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PITTSBURGH JAZZ

 

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, Parlan to 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.

 

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Duke Ellington is first African-American and the first musician to solo on U.S. circulating coin

    MARY LOU WILLIAMS     

            INTERVIEW

       In Her Own Words
SANDY STALEY (VAPORETTI)
  • 79, Female
  • Brackenridge, PA
  • United States
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SANDY STALEY (VAPORETTI)'s Friends

  • Rick Hirsch
  • Rebecca Parris
  • Michael A. Constable
  • Jack Cenna
  • Paul & Gerry
  • The Tuesday Night Big Band
  • Dave Yoho
  • Deb Weible
  • Michele Bensen
  • Luther DeJarunett

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Profile Information

Pittsburgh Connection
FORTUNATE TO HAVE LIVED IN THE PGH. AREA SO RICH
IN JAZZ HISTORY. WISH I HAD BEEN BORN EVEN EARLIER
BECAUSE I JUST MISSED SOME GREAT JOINTS TO HANG
IN AND LEARN FROM THE PLAYERS WHO PLAYED THEM.
Favorite Pittsburgh musicians/performers
ANYONE WHO IS TRULY DEDICATED TO THE BUSINESS
OF MUSIC AND N O T SHOW BUSINESS.. ANYONE
WHO REALIZES THAT EVERYONE STILL HAS SO MUCH
TO LEARN. ANYONE WHO SHOWS RESPECT WHEN
DUE. PERFORMERS WHO RESPECT THE AUDIENCES
THAT SUPPORT THEM.
Favorite Jazz Radio or media station
WDUQ-FM
WQED-FM
Favorite Pittsburgh Jazz Venue
C.J.'S ON PENN ON THURSDAY JAMS
ANYWHERE THAT GREAT PLAYERS ARE PLAYING.
RHYTHM HOUSE ON SUNDAYS IN BRIDGEVILLE
SPIN IN SHADYSIDE (THANKS TO MICHELE BENSEN)
DIZZY'S IN THE STRIP (ONLY OPEN FOR A MINUTE)
About Me:
LUCKY TO HAVE A MUSICIAN FOR A FATHER AND A MOM
WHO SHOULD HAVE BEEN A SINGER. BOTH HAD VERY
DIVERSE MUSICAL LIKES AND I WAS EXPOSED TO EVERY
KIND OF MUSIC. HAD MAGNIFICENT MUSIC TEACHERS
BOTH IN SCHOOL & PRIVATELY. WAS MADLY IN LOVE
WITH SINGING SINCE FOREVER. MADLY IN LOVE WITH
LEARNING MATERIAL UNKNOWN TO ME. SOMEWHAT
OUTSPOKEN AT TIMES. ALWAYS TRUTHFUL ABOUT
MUSIC THOUGH. YOU EITHER CAN OR YOU CAN'T......
Artist or Fan
artist

Comment Wall (13 comments)

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At 6:15pm on November 23, 2009, Devorah Segall said…
I am shocked to just find out here, today, that Sandy Staley has passed..I am so saddened by this.
Sandy meant so much to me, and always will.
What a blessing to this world.
She was a swinging triumphant spirit throughout everything and her music, her generosity, her humor, her brilliance= her essence will always be an inspiration.

I miss you Sandy. Thank you for being here and for being my friend.
love and prayers,
Devorah
At 5:05am on September 12, 2009, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…
Dear Friends,

I hope that you can join us this coming Sunday at Schenley Plaza for a wonderful day of JAZZ, for the Pittsburgh Jazz Society Picnic!

I'm happy to be singing during the "Diva" section of the program at 1:30pm. See below schedule.

I want you to also know that I will there for most of the day sitting at the PJS table selling my dear friend Sandy Staley's CD, "Everything I love" for $15.00. Most of you on this email address list have already heard of her passing on September 1st. It's a terrible loss for the world and for the Pittsburgh Jazz scene.

I hope you will stop at the PJS table and treat yourself by buying one or more CD's of this great artist.

She was one of a kind and no one could ever take her place.

Michele Bensen
At 11:44pm on September 5, 2009, Buster Maxwell said…
Sandy, we miss you. Every vocalist in Pittsburgh has been inspired by you. Godspeed on your journey...
At 3:58pm on September 4, 2009, Sue Russell said…
I'm so sad to learn of Sandy's death. I studied with her briefly at Duquesne 25 years ago. I always think of her when I'm choosing songs or finding my own way into the lyric. We've kept in touch off and on through the years. She was an original...the real thing, and not enough known.
At 2:03am on September 4, 2009, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…
At 12:54am on September 4, 2009, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…
At 12:44am on September 4, 2009, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…
At 3:45pm on September 3, 2009, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…
Sandy,

We miss you so much! You pages will remain active so members and friends can post comments in your honor.
At 3:42pm on September 3, 2009, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…
Hi all,

Sad news for the Pittsburgh jazz community.... Michelle Benson called me yesterday to tell me that our dear friend Sandy Staley passed away at Forbes Hospice Tuesday evening. There will be no viewing, no service. A memorial service will be held later at a time and location to be announced.

Let's be thankful that her suffering is now over.

Scotty
At 5:54pm on May 5, 2009, Jack Cenna said…
Sandy, I gave your email address to my friend/DJ/ drummer, his name is John Nasshan, he is going to email you about your CD, that way theres no middle man {me}. Jack Cenna

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