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 Kenny, I've finally taken some time out to get back at you.We go so far back, and I'm just glad you've stayed into your music. I enjoyed your take on "Foolish Heart" real nice. I'll be hooking up with you I'm sure. We'll do some standards and hopefully feel that Groove only Jazz can bring. I'm looking for a new set of Vibes, if you come across anything or anyone put the word out that Sweet William is looking for a Righteous Harp. In the mean time you be smooth and I'll be listening to all the melodies that make it all Happen. Later BH
I am definitely interested in hearing your release when it comes out. If you are interested, we could probably do a feature on the release or any upcoming gigs in support of it, since you're a local artist. When your CD is ready, you could send me a copy at work.
The address is:
The Daily News
C/O Eric Slagle
409 Walnut Street
McKeesport PA 15132
If you want to call me there, the number is 412-664-9161x1966.
By the way, 'm listening to "Moanin'" on your profile page. Sounds good. Any shows coming up soon?
Hey Ken this is Mary Anns' son Robert i got the scale you gave her and made a profile on here. Just so you know I am deticated and i will practice hard because music is a passion of mine so thank you for helping me
Nice to finally meet you in person. I enjoyed hearing you play last night at Tony's Jam session at April's. I captured some of everyone's playing. Go to my page and starting with song number 6 you will hear songs from last night. Hope to see you next time. Ahveekhy