Pain Relief Beyond Belief





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

Profile -Gypsy Piano Blues Pittsburgh Museum Examiner week of 02/12/2010

The blues styling of Denise Peachey's Gypsy Piano Blues has been said to liven up the Avenue in the November 2009 performance series
in the Bloomfield section of Pittsburgh. A proud native Pittsburgher,
Denise has released three CDs, appeared on the "Code Pearl" tribute CD
to Janis Joplin (of which the proceeds were donated to Hurricane
Katrina relief efforts), and has played for the Baltimore Jazz &
Blues Festival and the Federal Hill Jazz & Blues Fest with her
former band Gypsy & Crazy Moon. Peachey has received radio play on
Bzoo Homegrown Radio, Pitt Radio, Crossfire Radio, Fat Cat Radio and
Nette Radio and has also gotten airplay in Australia, France and

At the age of four, Denise learned began her studies in music and piano
with her mother, who had majored in music and was a music teacher at
the University of Indiana PA. Eventually, her mother became her music
and math teacher at the local Catholic school she attended -- something
she notes she wasn't particularly pleased with. Denise lists Elvis
Presley andThe Rolling Stones as some of her biggest inspirations.

One of Denise's most treasured memories of her life as a musician is
when she played for 5,000+ people with one of her earlier bands, Gypsy
&The Crazymoon, at the Baltimore Jazz and Blues Fest in 2002 for
the Federal Hill Blues Fest. One difficulty Denise mentions she faces
as a musician is not being able to drive due to a heart condition she
has had since she was a child, therefore needing people to drive her.
When she was growing up, doctors told her she most likely wouldn't live
to the age of 30 and wouldn't be able to have children. A testament to
the fact that miracles to occur is that Denise is now in her
mid-forties and has two children.

Over the years, Denise has played at roadhouses "in the middle nowhere"
with Gypsy & Crazymoon, showings for which large audiences always
showed. She has played for towns in Pennsylvania she didn't know
existed, for colleges such as State College and Leigh High Valley, and
has been played for Womens Radio in Nevada Live 365 and Blues &
Boogie Live 365 in rotation.

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