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

Melissa Jones's Blog – October 2017 Archive (2)

Dizzy Gillespie and the Pittsburgh Connection

John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie was born in Cheraw, SC, October 21, 1917. His virtuosity on trumpet was immediately recognized and through teacher recommendations, received a scholarship to Laurinberg Institute (NC), where he studied music with esteemed educator, Philmore "Shorty" Hall. Upon his exit, Dizzy headed to Philadelphia, embarking on a professional musical career. His ability had been realized by many, but not appreciated by all. As a member of the Cab Calloway Orchestra, Dizzy's…


Added by Melissa Jones on October 16, 2017 at 10:51pm — 2 Comments

Thelonious Monk - 100 years!

"Out To Lunch", a daily three hour broadcast of Jazz music provided by radio station WKCR, recently presented the music of Pittsburgh Jazz great, Ahmad Jamal. Host, Phil Schaap, profiled Jamal's career, highlighting his early Argo recordings (1956-62). Pittsburgh's Jazz legacy was cited and recognized as a major contributor to the Jazz narrative. The music was spectacular and the content informative, but why take my word for it? Partially into the broadcast, Phil was informed the great Ahmad…


Added by Melissa Jones on October 7, 2017 at 6:58pm — No Comments

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