From Blakey to Brown, Como to Costa, Eckstine to Eldridge, Galbraith to Garner, Harris to Hines, Horne to Hyman, Jamal to Jefferson, Kelly to Klook; Mancini to Marmarosa, May to Mitchell, Negri to Nestico, Parlanto Ponder, Reed to Ruther, Strayhorn to Sullivan, Turk to Turrentine, Wade to Williams… the forthcoming publication Treasury of Pittsburgh Jazz Connections by Dr. Nelson Harrison and Dr. Ralph Proctor, Jr. will document the legacy of one of the world’s greatest jazz capitals.
Do you want to know who Dizzy Gillespie idolized? Did you ever wonder who inspired Kenny Clarke and Art Blakey? Who was the pianist that mentored Monk, Bud Powell, Tad Dameron, Elmo Hope, Sarah Vaughan and Mel Torme? Who was Art Tatum’s idol and Nat Cole’s mentor? What musical quartet pioneered the concept adopted later by the Modern Jazz Quartet? Were you ever curious to know who taught saxophone to Stanley Turrentine or who taught piano to Ahmad Jamal? What community music school trained Robert McFerrin, Sr. for his history-making debut with the Metropolitan Opera? What virtually unknown pianist was a significant influence on young John Coltrane, Shirley Scott, McCoy Tyner, Bobby Timmons and Ray Bryant when he moved to Philadelphia from Pittsburgh in the 1940s? Would you be surprised to know that Erroll Garner attended classes at the Julliard School of Music in New York and was at the top of his class in writing and arranging proficiency?
Some answers can be gleaned from the postings on the Pittsburgh Jazz Network.
For almost 100 years the Pittsburgh region has been a metacenter of jazz originality that is second to no other in the history of jazz. One of the best kept secrets in jazz folklore, the Pittsburgh Jazz Legacy has heretofore remained mythical. We have dubbed it “the greatest story never told” since it has not been represented in writing before now in such a way as to be accessible to anyone seeking to know more about it. When it was happening, little did we know how priceless the memories would become when the times were gone.
Today jazz is still king in Pittsburgh, with events, performances and activities happening all the time. The Pittsburgh Jazz Network is dedicated to celebrating and showcasing the places, artists and fans that carry on the legacy of Pittsburgh's jazz heritage.
Live and Perform in the Pittsburgh area. Philly native, lived in LA for 10 years. Now I'm a Pittsburgher - nice place to raise kids.
Favorite Pittsburgh musicians/performers
The Patti Spadaro Band, Kenny Blake, theCAUSE, Blues Orphans, Jill Simmons, Tom Breiding, Poogie Bell, Jim Donovan's Drum the Estatic, Cheryl Ann Hawk, Jill West and Blues Attack, The Clarks, Bill Toms and Hard Rain, Rusted Root, and lots more...
I'm much more of a blues, improv-jam, rock player than a jazz player. Hope to get introduced to some great music and players here. Just put out a new CD out "Bringing Me Back". With Jim Donovan (Rusted Root) on drums, and Eric Kurtzrock on drums too. Skip Sanders (The Clarks) on keys. I'm a lead guitarist,singer,songwriter. Lived, toured, recorded, played and taught full time in LA area for 10 years. Now I play around Pittsburgh with my own band and many other fine performers, & hang out with my kids.
Hey Patti, You too sounded GREAT the other night! Thanks agin! Yes, had BIG fun at Moondogs playing whichu', Jeff and Ken. How fun to be joined by Nelson and his Trombetto too! Rock on SIstah! Enjoy your week!
Nice to meet you. We'll meet soon out and about I'm sure. I was actually planning on going to CJ's this or next Thursday to listen to Roger Humphries and the boys. I like to go out by myself sometimes when I listen to live music. I don't want to be with people who don't get it or enjoy it as much as I do and talk while I want to listen or leave before it's time. CJ's is the best place to go alone to just chill and listen to some good music with some good people. I may send Kenny Blake an email and let him know I'll be going. Hopefully, he doesn't have something going on and can stop by. He is one of my favorite musicians in town. He's the real deal. Great, honest, sincere guy... and he can play. He plays with Souled Out, which is one of my favorite bands around.
Anyway, let me know where and when you'll be playing. I'd love to support you. Welcome to Pittsburgh by the way. I've lived other places too but made my way back to Pittsburgh 11 years ago and have been home since. I'd love to show you the Pittsburgh I know. Interesting city filled with good people. Great music scene.
Have a good one Patti. Hopefully, I'll meet you soon.
Welcome. You are a Pittsburgh icon and you will meet new fans and friends here. We don't think fo the journalistic genres of our music as intrinsically valid so you belong here as a player, performer or a fan. Jazz cam from the blues and rock came from jazz if you look back toward the roots. Thanks for joining. Please post your performances here as well and voice your opinion as you see fit.