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.
Hey Annie I moved back to Pittsburgh a year ago! Sat in with the Flow Reggae band and it was fun. I live in East Liberty or Larimer and close to many things. I need to bring some things from Harrisburg ie computer and music work. The gigs in Harrisburg come and go but I usually find out tbe happenings. There always is something here in Pittsburgh and I finally have a day job lol. I played in a jazz variety group 19 yrs and freelanced in Harrisburg from 1984 to 2003. Paid well and rehearsed more on freelancing than the regular group. Some cats have passed and others are getting old. Nice to come back here and see Lou Stellute and Jay Willis playing well. Gotta catch up to you sister.
I apologize for just getting to do this but I enjoyed your your story, your music, your comments, and your spirit. Keep on being who you are, speaking out - making a difference, and being a messenger of the music. In a way, your words about "the jazz loop" were prognostic in that they remind us from where the music has come. Your comments also beckons us that a change is coming, and it will because time brings about alot of changes (that what time does). I believe also that we must seek the future and be looking for it, if we intend to find it. Remember that the rudiments will always be somewhere in the mix. When I listen to some of the young musicians in the high schools and colleges, I'm confident that Jazz will be around and, even moreso, when it is integrated more (body, mind-soul and spirit), or when it dares to go outside of its box, taking the risk to stretch and, perhaps, continuing to add to lessor engaged musical forms, rather than as you stated simply being "stuck in the jazz Loop." Of course, there's also the marriage between Jazz music and the Business of Jazz! Maybe that topic is for another discussion. Thanks again for speaking your mind. God Bless. Bobby Fulton
I´d really appreciate it if you could take the time to look at my work and leave your impressions here or in the guestbook on my homepage -http://www.miartemartagracielabressi.webs.com/- where there are more samples of my digital art works, engravings and sculptures. The web site´s in Spanish but, if you want to read the texts in English, you can access my Livejournal:
You can also visit the website we created with the Belgian jazz musician Dirk Schreurs to make our recent video art collaboration known to the world:
http://www.mindsofglass.webs.com/ ¨ Minds of Glass: ¨All visual compositions perfectly match the soundtrack’s expressive aesthetics in terms of emotional content and artistic strength” (New York/Los Angeles Independent Media Board).
Where you playin' at Annie on the 8th of Jan.? I will be at Thunderbird sat the 7th if that is what you mean! I want to rock and reggae at Logan's in Oakland on Craig Street afterwards. Hit me up on me cellie- kev
Oh Annie! whats up? You know 60% of the time I took my horns out I did not get to sit in ! In my home town everyone is doing their own thing and not many have jams anymore and I know most of the artists. I go to Baltimore and have a drummer friend I grew up with based there and still I think he does not realize how to treat a guest with 7 THOUSAND BUCKS WORTH OF HORNS! Dr. Harrison, Dwayne Dolphin, Jessica Lee, NO PROBLEM! I still want you to look at my charts and maybe we could work on some with you playing bass on keyboard but my main man Dan Wasson hopefully will be available. Just newer tunes not many play I transcribed over 20 yrs . I got around to adding changes when someone gave me a 'rhodes' sounding keyboard and remembered I used to play bass so it was a great ear training time.- thanx -kev p.s. have a nice holiday season!
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Yes Annie. It has happened to each of us at sometime or other. Everyone just wants to be loved but some don't know how to get it, ask for it or accept it. Our calling as musicians is to move the spirits of our audience toward love whether we know them or not.