PITTSBURGH 3D




Roger Humphries


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.






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



       In Her Own Words

Featured Blog Posts – February 2009 Archive (7)

THE STATE OF JAZZ podcast with Diva JC on

Nelson Harrison was my guest on my MUSICWOMAN LIVE! podcast on

February 18, about THE STATE OF JAZZ with other notable jazz aficianado's and musicians.

This show is archived at… Continue

Added by Diva JC on February 28, 2009 at 6:30pm — No Comments

The State of Affairs for Radio Advertising

Here is something that some of you will be interested in. Now if this is talking about commercial radio in general where do you think this leaves the remaining Jazz stations and public radio?



Signal Fading: Radio 4Q Revs Down 11%

by Erik Sass, Friday, February 20, 2009

Feeling the effects of the sharp economic downturn, radio took another big hit in the fourth quarter of 2008, according to the Radio Advertising Bureau. Total ad revenues… Continue

Added by Kevin Amos on February 23, 2009 at 4:46pm — No Comments

What happened to the Jazz Jam Session?

Early in the evolution of jazz music, jam sessions became the opportunity for players to develop musical ideas, learn repertoire and phrasing, performance conventions, and learn from their peers. Probably the most famous jazz jam session was held on Monday nights at Minton's Playhouse in Harlem, NY, starting in 1941. Swing Era soloists such as jazz saxophonists Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young, and jazz trumpeter Roy Eldridge joined the house band, which included Thelonious Monk, Kenny Clarke,… Continue

Added by Monika Herzig on February 23, 2009 at 12:07am — 4 Comments


There is a discussion on The Washington DC Network re: returning jazz back to commercially advertising radio stations. The discussion was initiated by my close friend and native Pittsburgher, Mickey Bass, an extraordinarily talented and venerated bassist. After reading the developing thread there I left a short comment but have decided to start another thread on this network that perhaps will move in another direction. Please join in both discussions if you like. It's all… Continue

Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on February 21, 2009 at 9:00pm — 17 Comments

Amazing young Jazz piano player Pittsburgh native Derrick Finch is killed in a car crash in Los Angeles on 2-17-09

I was just returning to 'The Village', walking over to my friend Matt to say hello and he informed me a few minutes ago that Derrick Finch was lost to us in a car accident. My breath literally leapt from my chest. I knew Derrick Finch quite well here in Los Angeles. I called him Dr. He stumbled over the correct pronunciation of my name... it was an inside joke we shared - and we shared it about a week ago here in Leimert Park.

Dr. Finch was a brilliant man. He loved Jazz. HE LOVED… Continue

Added by Waberi on February 20, 2009 at 1:30am — 3 Comments


It is with deep regret and and a heavy heart that we announce the death of member Derrick R. Finch, who was killed in an auto accident today in Los Angeles where he was attending graduate school. He was one of the finest pianists of his generation and destined to be a major star in the great Pittsburgh lexicon of jazz pianists. He was a good friend and an early member of this network. He is also the first member to pass through transition. He will always have a page on this network and… Continue

Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on February 19, 2009 at 10:30pm — 36 Comments


You go, Bro!

Seems like these brothers from Pittsburgh can't be stopped these days!

Thanks for the hedzup on this new film.

Every conscious and positive statement that can be made about and for Haiti is much needed, as much for us as for our legacy to future generations.

(Just this week I caught up to the September, 2008, issue of National Geographic -- a special on where food comes from, which has a brief but heart-wrenching article about the… Continue

Added by DR. LEO CASINO on February 5, 2009 at 8:05pm — No Comments

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