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
Max Leake
  • 66, Male
  • Pittsburgh
  • United States
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Profile Information

Pittsburgh Connection
I live here, work here and generally have fun here.
Favorite Pittsburgh musicians/performers
I don't have enough time to list all that come to mind.
Favorite Pittsburgh Jazz Venue
Currently CJs in the strip. I miss the Balcony, the Top Shelf, the Tender Trap, Sonny Day's, the Encore, the Manteca, the Crazy Quilt, Too Sweet, the club downstairs at the Roosevelt Hotel. Man I could go on all day with that.
About Me:
Local jazz musician and a multimedia developer for the WISER institute at UPMC/Pitt.
Artist or Fan
artist, industry professional

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Comment Wall (25 comments)

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At 3:45am on April 6, 2010, Mara Rosenbloom said…
Hi Max,
Mara here. I see you are also a jazz musician, so I am writing to extend to you a personal invitation: My group, the Mara Rosenbloom Quartet will be on tour from New York City next week! We perform original jazz music, & will be kicking off our spring tour in Pittsburgh, Wed, April 14, 8:00pm @ Shadow Lounge. We make this music for sharing! So, I hope you'll be able to join us. You can have a listen at, or simply write me for more info!

Hope you can make it out!
At 4:04pm on February 23, 2009, Kennard Roosevelt Williams said…
Thanks for your response Max; it's always a pleasure to listen to one of Pittsburghs' best.

At 8:16pm on August 19, 2008, Michele Bensen said…
I drove around about 4 times looking for a place to park in Highland Park while the concert was on. I could have never walked that far to find a place to sit, but hwta I heard of your playing sounded great and what a great turnout for the concert . That's the way it should be here in the "Burg"! Friday's gig was fun too, thanks for making it Max.
Peace, Michele
At 5:23pm on July 23, 2008, KENIA said…
Hi Max,
We missed you last night :-( It turned out very nicely.Lots of friends and supporters. I am soooooo flattered. Let's talk soon,
At 3:04am on May 20, 2008, Marly Ikeda said…
Hi Max,
Nice to meet you, thanks for the friendship!
All the best.
At 6:34am on May 12, 2008, Andy Bianco said…
Max it was a pleasure to get to play with you at the Rhythm House; you sound wonderful. Thanks again!
At 1:27am on May 7, 2008, Virgil Walters said…
Thanks for giving the Grove my info. Hope something come of it. The old wid times FOR SURE!!
Hope to see you Thursday night.
At 7:37pm on March 19, 2008, Adam Brock said…
Hey Max,
Seeing if you remember me from the Rhythm House night with Sandy. Just saying hi on here!
At 11:39am on March 19, 2008, Linda Jones said…
What Budman said! ;)

Hope all is well with you too! LJ
At 10:04pm on March 18, 2008, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…

Thank you for joining this group. Your emailed comment is greatly appreciated and very important. Would you please post it on the discussion board so others can see it and respond? Thanks.



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