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
Melvin C. Claytor
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  • Harrisburg, PA
  • United States
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Pittsburgh Connection
Born and raised in The Mongahela Valley. Performed with the Counts, High Society, We Three Trio, Pure Imagination, Sinceres, Four Shure, New Elegants, in the Pittsburgh Area during the 60's, 70's, & 80's era.
Favorite Pittsburgh musicians/performers
John Hovanec, Paul Berinsky, Mickey Gniadek, Richie Merritt, Barry Hindmarsh, Tony Janflone, Sr., Frank Pedrosky, Bill Cotton, Nelson Harrison, Gene Ludwig, Jess Pelligrino, Kenny Blake, Leon Cook (dec.), George Heid, John Shabatura, Max Leake,
Favorite Jazz Radio or media station
Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Harrisburg, and Philadelphia stations.
Favorite Pittsburgh Jazz Venue
Flashes (gigs) from the past - The Hurricane Club, The Hollywood Club, The Encore, Donora Elks, Uniontown Vets, & many others...
About Me:
Retired principal living in the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania area.
Member of several motorcycle clubs and enjoys riding my Gold Wing throughout the U.S.A.
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At 5:08pm on August 15, 2009, JOHN PAPI said…
Hey Melvin
Just checking in , Long long time, checking out your site Great.. Just ran into Johnny Vann and Richey Mettit and they are doing great.. Talk soon John Papi
At 8:27pm on January 1, 2009, Dr. Nelson Harrison said…
Looking forward to hearing some of your sounds here soon.

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