PROGRESSIVE MUSIC COMPANY

AFRO-AMERICAN MUSIC INSTITUTE CELEBRATES 36 YEARS

BOYS CHOIR AFRICA SHIRTS
 
 
http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/building-today-for-tomorrow/x/267428

 Pain Relief Beyond Belief

                         http://www.komehsaessentials.com/                              

 

PITTSBURGH JAZZ

 

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.

 

WELCOME!

 

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Duke Ellington is first African-American and the first musician to solo on U.S. circulating coin

    MARY LOU WILLIAMS     

            INTERVIEW

       In Her Own Words
Pgh has such a rich jazz supporting heritage.I hope it doesn't become a thing of the past.
When I've been back to visit and to sing it has been so disheartening to see fewer and fewer venues still hanging in there.
There are so many really wonderful musicians there ( of course I include singers in that category).
They need the support of each other and of the Pgh audiences and potential employers.
The city needs the positive energy that is created from showing that support.

Music - jazz has the power to connect us to each other ....to lift us up and to transcend the so-called differences that separate us...age, race, ethnicity, gender, politics, religion . . . all of it!
I hope there is a resurgence of supporting live jazz in Pgh in a big way.
It makes a difference.
Make music!!!
blessings,
Devorah
PS this blog has more than one page..please continue to next page to read all entries and add yours

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Comment by Devorah Segall on May 25, 2008 at 3:32am
Reply to Sandy Staley's comments by Janelle Burdell 12 hours ago
So true, so true...the 'haaaaang' is where it's at!!! I feel so fortunate that as a puppy I had the sense to experience it. Yes, it was uncomfortable at times...for goodness sake-I'm a white girl who plays drums! Ha! But you know, you got to carry a hunger...and humility...with you to 'get it', i think. "Seeking Spirit" -in Eastern Philopsohy! Ha! I keep asking them to join me-yup, come by my apt/studio or...hell still a big fan of Ritter's for an after gig hang! Hahaha! We all luv to eat 'after' the gig! (And....it's still 'safe' enough here to do it with gear in car!!!!) Lots more to share--soon, promise. It's a much bigger matter we are discussing.

Big love going out to Bobby Negri-a champion.
Enjoy your weekend good people! smiles, -janelle
Comment by Devorah Segall on May 15, 2008 at 12:09am
Comment by Devorah Segall 1 day ago
You're welcome Nelson- Its something I care about a lot!
I recently heard about the Ava Lounge- how great.
When I was back in Pgh for a while a couple of years ago I spoke with Justin Strong (Shadow Lounge, Ava) about us partnering on a beautiful space in East Liberty on Highland Ave. that would serve as a kind of co-op jazz space/arts venue where the musicians would have a big role in keeping it going.
It almost happened..(someone else grabbed it and turned it into a hair salon!) and now it looks like the Ava Lounge may be somewhat following that path. I hope it thrives and the music keeps growing and being widely supported and heard. Anything I can do to help- let me know.

Thanks for what you said above, Nelson. Beautifully put. Also thanks for quoting Billy Ecstine on the subject of singers/players . I resonate with that of course!

Bless you Pgh..all you jazz artists and fans- make a joyful noise
Comment by Devorah Segall on May 14, 2008 at 4:00pm
Sending prayers for healing/recovery for the great Bobby Negri.
I ditto what you said here, Sandy, about this remarkable man and about what we (musicians/ humans) can learn from and give to each other.
Sandy, you are a very generous spirit...on behalf of all of us- thank you for sharing your learning and the wonderful music that you make.
Hanging is its own kind of playing! Like I mentioned earlier here, why do you think its called playing!!!
Miss hanging with you Sandy
What a blessing to be with, play with people who love what you love.
Love to us all
Get well Bobby- you are loved and appreciated
Devorah
Comment by SANDY STALEY on May 14, 2008 at 6:54am
CHANGING THE SUBJECT FOR A MINUTE... BOBBY NEGRI, A MARVELOUS PIANIST
AND FRIEND OF OVER 40 YEARS, IS IN MERCY HOSPITAL, I.C.U. AND HAS BEEN
FOR A COUPLE WEEKS. PLEASE SEND HIM YOUR PRAYERS EVEN IF JUST IN YOUR
THOUGHTS. HE HAS BEEN ONE OF THE UNHERALDED HEROES OF MINE IN THIS
CITY. HE COULD SWING LIKE NOONE AND KNEW 1,000,S OF SONGS, AND,
MIGHT I ADD, IN ANY KEY!!!!!!!!! FORTUNATELY, HE WAS OF THE SCHOOL WHEN
MUSICIANS COULD MAKE A LIVING PLAYING THEIR MUSIC. THANK GOD FOR
THAT. WITH SO FEW VENUES TODAY, I FEEL SAD FOR THE YOUNG PLAYERS.
TO GROW, YOU DO OR SHOULD "SHED" WITH OLDER PLAYERS TO STUDY WHAT
THEY HAVE LEARNED. MUSICIANS USED TO HANG AFTER THE GIGS BUT I DON'T
SEE WHERE THEY CAN DO THAT NOW.. AND HANGING IS FUN, ESPECIALLY WITH
PEOPLE WHO LOVE WHAT YOU LOVE. OH WELL, I'VE SAID MY LITTLE PIECE.
LOVE TO ALL WHO LOVE MUSIC.....
Comment by Dr. Nelson Harrison on May 13, 2008 at 11:04pm
Since you had the vision several years ago, you will be pleased with what Justin is doing with Ava. Visit the page of member J. Malls who has been adding a jazz DJ aspect to the Ava sets during the breaks and afterwards.
Comment by Dr. Nelson Harrison on May 13, 2008 at 9:36pm
Wherever there is difficulty there is also opportunity. We in the jazz community have been silent for so long that we have become easy to ignore. It is so important for us to speak up without fear of censure. We don't have to fear getting fired do we? ;-)

Art Blakey was often heard saying that "Jazz is the highest expression possible on a musical instrument. It comes directly from the Creator, through the artist to the people. It doesn't get any higher than that."

The voice was the very first instrument so I never make a distinction between instrumentalists and vocalists. Billy Eckstine told me that "A musician should play like a singer who sings like a musician... and a singer should sing like a musician who plays like a singer."

If we remember to practice the principle, "If it is to be it is up to me," we can surely demonstrate the high cultural values of our art to others. The educators are having difficulty valuing the arts, yet it has been demonstrated for decades in psycho-physiological research that students who play acoustic music actually grow more gray matter than those who don't. It makes one wonder what educators are thinking. The recent (April 18, 2008) demise of the 40 year-old International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE) is a major blow. However, the music came from the people not the schools and we can keep it alive and well. Education takes place in life, not just the classroom.

There is a new happening place that is fast becoming the clubhouse for the Pittsburgh Jazz Network. Next trip home make sure you visit the Ava Lounge at Highland Avenue & Baum Blvd. in S'Liberty from 8:30 - midnight every Monday. Howie Alexander Trio is the house band and host and we be jammin'.

This is such an important discussion. Thank you Devorah for initiating it and thanks to all contributors.
Comment by Devorah Segall on May 13, 2008 at 5:46pm
Bob Karlovits comments:
At 5:27pm on May 13th, 2008, Bob Karlovits said…
Devorah:
Thanks for writing. Good to hear from you.
I think the problem with jazz clubs here has been basically that the owners have not had a good business sense. Let's not mention names, but the owner of a major club Downtown didn't seem willing -- or able -- to bring in enough top talent to make the club a must-go site. Fans could only put up so far with his band being the Saturday night entertainment.
Other club owners were not dedicated enough to the music to feature it all the time.
It is not the best time for jazz in the city right now and we need someone who is willing to do more than talk about being the owner of a great jazz club.
Comment by Devorah Segall on March 13, 2008 at 6:34am
I remember that the great pianist John D'Amico and Rodger Ryan (one of a kind drummer and human) once told me about how at certain concerts and gigs, their trio would make a point of going out and talking to the people in the audiences about the music and the process of jazz -before and after they would play..This is so great!
I know that makes a difference .I'm sure it helped build a wider audience for jazz among some people who would not otherwise have become supporters and fans of this music.

People want to connect. Music matters Kids need it bigtime. The kids that I know love jazz when they're exposed to it...The improvisation and interplay inherent in this music is like where they (kids) go when they play...hey why do you think its called "playing"!! hmmmm....

The trend in public schools to get rid of music curriculum and other arts programs is terribly detrimental with far reaching effects. The music needs to be supported in order to grow and to promote the growth and enrichment of those who hear it.This is true in schools and in music venues. We all need to be pro-active to fuel the re-energizing of this powerful connecting music.
Miss you Pgh Keep playing
blessings!
Comment by Dr. Nelson Harrison on March 3, 2008 at 3:50am
Well put by a true pro. I fully agree it is our duty and responsibility to sensitize our audiences and help them become aware of the vicissitudes we face in trying to bring them music, always remembering, as you so aptly state, to thank them for their time, attention and presence. Too many of us sometimes forget to acknowledge the audience and then wonder why we don't see them more often. Standing in front of people playing a bunch of notes and then taking a long break in the corner of the club ignoring the people who are spending money waiting for more music is NOT the way to build a larger audience. If the schools respected musicianship more, we would have future generations of fans and musicians emerging to fill the shoes of their idols just as we did. We must take every opportunity to help people understand what it is we are doing and what it takes to do it. Live music in "entertainment" which is social interaction not just notes in the air. Politicians spend millions trying to get people to identify with and support their agenda. We can do it for a lot less.
Comment by SANDY STALEY on March 2, 2008 at 3:21pm
WHEN SOME SCHOOL DISTRICTS ARE TRYING TO
ELIMINATE MUSIC FROM THE ELEMENTARY
SCHOOLS ALTOGETHER, THIS IS PROOF OF THE
MINIMAL RESPECT THAT MUSIC IS GIVEN BY THE
MASSES. HARSH? WELL, I THINK IT IS TRUE.
JAZZ IS ONLY FOUND ON NPR OR A COUPLE
INDEPENDENT STATIONS. WHY? I DO BELIEVE
THAT PEOPLE HAVE BECOME SO COMPLACENT
IN REGARDS TO MUSIC. THINKING THAT WHENEVER
THEY CHOOSE (ON RARE OCCASTIONS, FOR SOME)
TO HEAR LIVE MUSIC, IT WILL BE AVAILABLE.
MEANWHILE, WE WORKING MUSICIANS ALL KNOW
THAT THE VENUES CONTINUE TO GO BY THE
WAYSIDE. ON MY GIGS, I TELL PEOPLE TO CHECK
ON THEIR LOCAL SCHOOL PROGRAMS, MAKE THE
EXTRA EFFORT TO HEAR LIVE MUSICIANS ON A
SOMEWHAT MORE REGULAR BASIS, TO BUY THE
RECORDED PRODUCTS OF THOSE ARTISTS THEY
LIKE, AND ALSO , I ALWAYS THANK THEM FOR
TAKING THE TIME TO SHARE WITH US, FOR
THE SAKE OF MUSIC...........

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