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.
I really enjoyed playing with Billy Eckstein. There are so many great musicians from here that it would be impossible to name names. Let's just say most of my favorite musicians are from Pittsburgh.
Favorite Jazz Radio or media station
Sirius jazz and blues 72
Favorite Pittsburgh Jazz Venue
I came after the heyday of the Grill although it always was a treat to go there. Remember the Pink Poodle? Club Cafe, at certain points was a great club. Right now, we need to develop our local venues.
I've been blessed to play with some of the greatest musicians on the planet (from pgh) I try to share that experience through my playing and teaching.
I am a big fan of soccer, the world's game. It is so like playing jazz. Ask Dan Wasson about it.
Artist or Fan
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I would love to feature "you" as my guest on my show..If I am not your friend..please add me...also please call me @ the offc at 757 538 3540...757 971 3733 for details...click on the banner below to be a guest...JB
Just wanted to say how nice it was to catch up with you a few weeks ago at Wright's Seaford in Bridgeville. You sounded great and I sure got a kick out of all the musical lines you were laying down. My ears caught it all. I wish you the best. I know you have a very busy schedule, but I hope we can work together some time. It's way too long.
Hi Dave Pellow
So glad to see you here
Miss hearing your music and singing with you (Hopefully that will happen again before long) and watching you teach at CMU-wow(!) your students are very fortunate.
right now I'm still in California taking care of mom. The one year anniversary of my sister Linda's passing (here in Ca.)is coming up fast..still can hardly believe it.. I heard someone say recently that time is the most precious thing we have in this life..I get that.
I hope you are very well and very happy
Thanks for being here