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.
“The work, the will, the passion, Joani is all the things that inspire. Part of her magic is her fine control of nuances; vocals that range from a whisper to a whip.”
• The Globe and Mail
Joani Taylor grew up on the stages of Vancouver nightclubs. While other teenage girls were glued to the radio on Friday nights, Joani was singing her heart out as the opening act for Stevie Wonder at Isy’s Supper Club on Georgia Street.
From clubs to concerts, television shows and film scores, Joani has sung in venues all over the world. Some of the names she’s worked with include; Bryan Adams, Jon Bon Jovi, Tom Jones, Little Richard, David Foster, Miles Davis, Cannonball Adderley, Fraser MacPherson, and Moe Koffman. This distinguished list of influencers, along with years of performing with Vancouver’s top players, has now given rise to Joani’s sixth album, In My Own Voice.
“It's been too long between records for vocalist, Joani Taylor,
who returns to the scene with In My Own Voice, which features nine
tracks she co-wrote. She is effective on the ballads, most notably
Jim's Lament. Taylor updates the Dave Brubeck number, Take 5 with
the help of hip hopper Jay Kin.”
• Marke Andrews, Vancouver Sun
Joani’s first love is jazz and she’s been an in-demand performer at the
Vancouver International Jazz Festival many times. Joani was nominated for the National Jazz Awards and her album The Wall Street Sessions received a Juno nomination in 2003.
A prolific writer and vocal arranger, Joani has embraced the art of teaching. An acknowledged jazz master, she has taught classes for singers, musicians and television performers. For Joani, jazz is a vehicle for communicating, and her students have studied in the classroom of her experience, “I teach them to make sure there’s a lot of space for the audience to be part of the song, to really feel the music. Jazz can’t be too serious either – I show them how to use humour to develop intimacy with the audience.”
Joani has just finished filming a dazzling new video for her song, Take 5. Shot in moody sepia tones, it is set in a late night secret party loft on the edge of the city. In an explosion of new-world street style and old world charm, Joani collaborated with edgy young cinematographer Chayse Irvin and a cast of hot young dancers to create a stunning portrait of the timeless jazz standard.
Jazz vocalist Joani Taylor changes things up on her latest album
In My Own Voice.
The disc features the finest musicians performing her tunes live in the studio.
Known as a master of interpreting other people’s songs this time out she co-wrote almost all of the
14 tracks. From her years as a standard-bearer for the jazz tradition Taylor knows what it takes to create a great song. Taylor fans know what to expect from her and they won’t be dissapointed --- deep ,intense
feeling operating at the highest levelof artistry. Start to finish the album is a sublime exercise in jazz
Thank you for sharing your impressive bio with us. If you post some of your music on your page, it will be more accessible to the membership. Many members don't know how to visit links yet and it would be a shame for them not to hear you.
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