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 (424)


The Lester Young and Charlie Parker Birthday Celebration

Aug. 27, 28,&29 will present continuous, commercial-free radio, celebrating the birth anniversaries of Lester Young and Charlie Parker. Beginning August 27th, the genius of Pres and Bird will be displayed through Jazz rarities, interviews, expert commentary and, of course, their glorious music. Phil Schaap, Jazz historian and…


Added by Melissa Jones on August 24, 2016 at 5:00pm — No Comments


We are excited to announce the Ballroom is back open for business!!!

Because of all of your help and support we have been able to make all of the required renovations to the historic Ballroom.  It has truly been an amazing turn around, and all of us at James Street…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on August 22, 2016 at 6:47pm — No Comments

Charles McPherson Interview

Interview with Charles McPherson

Charles McPherson

I’ve had two lessons with Charles McPherson when on tour in San Diego. They have been utterly remarkable. The second one from last fall I taped: Thanks to Charles for allowing this transcription to be published on DTM.

This week Charles is playing at Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola Thursday through Sunday. It is a must-see gig for lovers of the…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on July 29, 2016 at 6:32pm — 1 Comment

Looking for solo participants for the Close-Up video series

Hi All,

For The Glassblock, I am filming solo performers playing two short pieces (1-5 minutes) for a series called Close-Up. The series places two cameras and a two mics in front of a performer to capture the performance.

Here's an example with Alejandro Pinzon.

The series…


Added by David Bernabo on July 27, 2016 at 4:15pm — No Comments

Mothers of invention: the women who pioneered electronic music

Mothers of invention: the women who pioneered electronic music

A new festival celebrates Daphne Oram, Laurie Spiegel and other female synth…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on July 3, 2016 at 4:49am — No Comments



From trumpets at the walls of Jericho to pop songs as torture in the Iraq War, sound can make an…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on June 30, 2016 at 3:27am — 1 Comment

Jazz on the Steps with Kai Ballard, Calvin Stemley, Keith Flowers and Kenzie!!

We're doing it again at Jaki Young's Jazz on the Steps at Carnegie Library, Homewood, this Wednesday, June 8, 5:30 - 7.  We will perform music of Herbie Hancock, Stevie Wonder, Steely Dan, David Sanborn.  It's going to be a wonderful day for music.  Come and enjoy.

Added by Kai Ballard on June 6, 2016 at 3:23am — No Comments


Dr. Bruce Marion's funeral expenses  - Let's thank Dr Bruce by bringing this campaign to fruition.

Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on May 30, 2016 at 5:00am — 4 Comments


James Johnson III's photo.


The Afro-American-Music-Institute is having a TWO week MUSIC summer camp from June 28th through July 12th...9am to 3pm . All you have to pay is a registration fee of only $25 dollars for your child and that's it. If your kids already have summer plans then spread the…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on May 29, 2016 at 3:00am — No Comments

That time when I was singing on stage and my mom and sister's house was burning.....

Thankfully my entire family was out of town.... no humans were home. While we sadly lost 2 kitties and a pet hamster, my sister, her partner Oliver, my nephews and niece and their housemate were all off at Louie's cabin in Pymatuning. They found out their home was on fire over facebook. I found out when my mother called me while Vinsantos (director of the New Orleans Drag Workshop) was explaining that to…


Added by Phat Man Dee on May 25, 2016 at 4:13pm — No Comments

Marian McPartland: What’s It Like To Be a Woman in a Man’s Jazz World? It Has Problems - 1957

by Dom Cerulli — 9/1/1957

An Exclusive Online Extra

Marian McPartland threw back her head and laughed. “You have no idea how often I’ve been asked that,” she said. “And, actually, I don’t know how to answer it.”

The questions were: What are your comments on being a woman in a man’s world, the world of jazz? Are…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on May 5, 2016 at 3:50am — No Comments

Erroll Garner: The Natural

by Harvey Siders — 10/19/1967

An Exclusive Online Extra

Yes, Virginia, there are leprechauns. I know because I’ve been running into one lately in Los Angeles. It seems everywhere I go, he’s there, listening, burying himself in some dark corner, just “quietly finding out what’s happening.” He must be a leprechaun. He’s 5'2"…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on May 5, 2016 at 3:30am — No Comments

Black Music is Black Music: Call it that!

Black Music is Black Music: Call it that!

by Fred Logan

April 18, 2016

Amiri Baraka said somewhere that, among other things, calling jazz (and other black music) "American" music ignores who created it and the

immense debt,…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on April 18, 2016 at 6:30pm — 5 Comments

Kai Ballard's Upcoming Gigs

April 15, 5-7:30, Backstage Bar with Calvin Stemley, Keith Flowers, Kenjie and myself.  This is a great group that Iove playing with performing music of Herbie, Stevie, Steely and others.  

Added by Kai Ballard on April 12, 2016 at 1:54am — No Comments

Film screenings! Theater openings! Strange weddings and a Jabberwocky!

Though the skies over Pittsburgh may be attempting to belie the truth, spring is here and for Phat Man Dee that means fabulous events, grand openings, social justice disco and more!

Join us this Friday April 8 when Lawrenceville's hottest concert hall and pizza palace, Spirit, turns 1 year old!…


Added by Phat Man Dee on April 5, 2016 at 9:10pm — No Comments

Who's Making $$$ on you music? Noy you!


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on March 28, 2016 at 1:34am — No Comments

Billy May

Hi all, 

This year is the 100th anniversary of the birth of Billy May, a jazz musician who was born in Pittsburgh. He grew up in East Liberty and graduated from Schenly High School. He is probably best known for his work with Charlie Barnet, and then arranging for Nat King Cole and especially Frank Sinatra.

I thought it would be nice if the Pittsburgh jazz community commemorated the anniversary of Billy's birth in some way. Anyone interested in…


Added by Stephen Tokarick on February 4, 2016 at 4:59am — No Comments

Jazz at Blue Moon Bar this Sunday! 23rd Annual Ides of March March! New videos about fascists and weddings!

Friends! So much is happening! It's crazy, how much is going on, it's hard to keep up with myself!

I am singing this Sunday March 13th at the Blue Moon Bar in Lawrenceville, with guitarist Carlos Peña! 10 pm, 21 and over, no cover, 5115 Butler St, Lawrenceville!…


Added by Phat Man Dee on March 11, 2016 at 6:38am — No Comments

Roy Eldridge

Happy Birthday to the incomparable, Pittsburgh Jazz Great Roy Eldridge! January 30, 1911.

Added by Melissa Jones on January 28, 2016 at 2:44pm — No Comments

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr On The Importance Of Jazz

On the Importance of Jazz…


Added by Dr. Nelson Harrison on January 18, 2016 at 9:55pm — 4 Comments

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