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

Event Details

Ed Skirtich

Time: January 22, 2009 from 8pm to 11pm
Location: 7th Floor Alumni Hall at University of Pittsburgh
City/Town: Pittsburgh, PA
Event Type: Musical, Theater
Organized By: Ed Skirtich
Latest Activity: Jan 22, 2009

Event Description

Kuntu Repertory Theater will be performing a muscial, "Clean Drums", about the famous drumset player Joe Harris that was written by Pittsburgh Playwright Rob Penny.

Kuntu Rep has both veteran and newcoming singers, actors, and actresses along with some veteran and newcoming musicians.

I'm very honored to be playing trumpet in this musical because I met Joe Harris once and he taught me about the business of music and networking skills.

Also my Dad, Joe Skirtich, taught at both Conolly and Fifth Avenue High Schools in the Hill District.

I'm really happy about all the wonderful things that happened in "The HIll" when my Dad worked there back in the day(1951-1977; he taught at Brashear High School from 1977ish-1985).

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Comment by Ed Skirtich on January 15, 2009 at 4:34am
Hi Folks,

That would be great to see all yinz at our performances starting on Jan 22nd through Feb. 7th.

Check out the Kuntu website for performance dates and times.

Ed Skirtich
Trumpet Player/Kuntu Rep Theater
(412) 422-4149 (H)
(412) 841-8046 (C)

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