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.
BOBBY IS NOT DOING SO WELL. TOO MANY THINGS
HAPPENING. JUST HAD HIS 80TH BIRTHDAY. CAN'T
BELIEVE IT! I STARTED WORKING WITH HIM IN HIS LATE
30'S.....DEVORAH, TIME CAN BE EVIL. I WISH YOU THE
BEST FOR YOU AND YOUR MOM.
THANKS FOR POSTING THE MESSAGE RE: BOBBY NEGRI.
I KNOW NEXT TO NOTHING ABOUT THE COMPUTER WORLD. THANK GOD I KNOW LOTS OF LYRICS!!!!!!!!!!!
HOPE YOU ARE WELL. LUCKY YOU IN CALIFORNIA. I
LOVE THE WHOLE STATE. SANG IN PALM SPRINGS LAST
YEAR. FOUND A MARVELOUS, MARVELOUS SINGER BY
THE NAME OF MIKE COSTLEY. WHAT A VOICE. HE CAN
DO IT ALL, ROCKERS, JAZZ, SCAT, POP, ETC. ORIGINALLY FROM BUFFALO. CHECK HIM OUT IF YOU
GET TO PALM SPRINGS. I CAN LET YOU KNOW WHERE HE
IS WORKING. HE WORKS ALL THE TIME THERE.
HOPE YOU ARE WELL AND YOUR MOM HAS IMPROVEMENT.
LET'S STAY IN TOUCH.
LOVE, SANDY STALEY
I'm copying this from my blog so more people will see it from Sandy Staly re; BOBBY NEGRI in Mercy Hospital
Comment by SANDY STALEY 1 day ago
CHANGING THE SUBJECT FOR A MINUTE... BOBBY NEGRI, A MARVELOUS PIANIST
AND FRIEND OF OVER 40 YEARS, IS IN MERCY HOSPITAL, I.C.U. AND HAS BEEN
FOR A COUPLE WEEKS. PLEASE SEND HIM YOUR PRAYERS EVEN IF JUST IN YOUR
THOUGHTS. HE HAS BEEN ONE OF THE UNHERALDED HEROES OF MINE IN THIS
CITY. HE COULD SWING LIKE NOONE AND KNEW 1,000,S OF SONGS, AND,
MIGHT I ADD, IN ANY KEY!!!!!!!!! FORTUNATELY, HE WAS OF THE SCHOOL WHEN
MUSICIANS COULD MAKE A LIVING PLAYING THEIR MUSIC. THANK GOD FOR
THAT. WITH SO FEW VENUES TODAY, I FEEL SAD FOR THE YOUNG PLAYERS.
TO GROW, YOU DO OR SHOULD "SHED" WITH OLDER PLAYERS TO STUDY WHAT
THEY HAVE LEARNED. MUSICIANS USED TO HANG AFTER THE GIGS BUT I DON'T
SEE WHERE THEY CAN DO THAT NOW.. AND HANGING IS FUN, ESPECIALLY WITH
PEOPLE WHO LOVE WHAT YOU LOVE. OH WELL, I'VE SAID MY LITTLE PIECE.
LOVE TO ALL WHO LOVE MUSIC.....
Thanks for writing. Good to hear from you.
I think the problem with jazz clubs here has been basically that the owners have not had a good business sense. Let's not mention names, but the owner of a major club Downtown didn't seem willing -- or able -- to bring in enough top talent to make the club a must-go site. Fans could only put up so far with his band being the Saturday night entertainment.
Other club owners were not dedicated enough to the music to feature it all the time.
It is not the best time for jazz in the city right now and we need someone who is willing to do more than talk about being the owner of a great jazz club.
I'm still in California trying to help my mom who is facing serious health challenges.
your prayers are greatly appreciated. She is amazing and still sings with me regularly. Its a trip to hear her sing St Louis Woman and Melancholy baby.
My sweet, beautiful sister Linda passed away here last August.
I hope to have a memorial service for her in Pgh at some point.
Will post that at the time.
I'm a bit shell shocked at this point but trying to stay focused on the positive and some overwhelming tasks at hand.
Hooked up with some beautiful musicians out here and working on writing some new music.
Will get back to my apartment in NYC when the time arrives...meanwhile I'm here.
Please stay in touch if any of you get out this way, please let me know.
We miss you a lot. I can't wait to see you sometime soon. Please come visit us when things lighten up for you out there. The doors are always open for you :-) Love, Kenia, Claudio & Lucas
Hey, Girl!! It's been years. I tried to get out and see you the last time you were in but something came up. Where are you playing or staying??? I would love to get together wnile you are in town. My dad died, so that is one of the reasons i am here. i haven't heard you since thwee Choir....I am sure you sound different. Mmy home number is 412-4215217. Hope to wee you!
The best thing for jazz and the future of jazz clubs and music sales is exactly what is happening on this site. We are the answer. By participating in this network and others like www.ilovejazz.ning.com we celebrate jazz and take it to a new level of awareness among the young people. As a result of my participation on ilovejazz.ning.com I got connected to Grapevine Star Entertainment Inc., which is now producing a series of jazz themed cartoons. Debotrah please come share with us at www.ilovejazz.ning.com