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

Denzel Washington Will Speak at the Grand Opening of the August Wilson House

Denzel Washington Will Speak at the Grand Opening of the August Wilson House

The restored Hill District home of the late playwright will be unveiled at a grand opening ceremony on Aug. 13.
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Abig name is coming to Pittsburgh to celebrate the grand opening of the August Wilson House, slated for Saturday, Aug. 13.

Denzel Washington, two-time Academy Award-winning actor, will join Wilson’s widow Constanza Romero-Wilson in delivering welcome remarks starting at 1:30 p.m. 

Washington has played a vital role in the restoration of August Wilson’s childhood home, located at 1727 Bedford Ave. in the Hill District. He was also recently named a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom — the highest civilian honor that can be bestowed in the U.S.

The building’s grand opening represents a culmination of a yearslong effort to raise awareness and funds for the project.

“August Wilson is one of the greatest playwrights in American history, in world history,” Washington said in a statement. “It is a privilege and honor, responsibility and duty and a joy to be a small part in keeping him alive. I will do everything I can to keep this structure alive and sound and a place for us all to grow.”

VIP ticket holders for the evening party are welcome to attend either or both of the 1-3 p.m. media event and the 5-8 p.m. celebration. The ribbon cutting will begin at 1 p.m., and the evening VIP event will also feature performances and several national August Wilson actors including Russell Hornsby, Stephen McKinley Henderson and others.

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The vision of a restored space at Wilson’s childhood home began after his death in 2005, when his nephew Paul Ellis formed the Daisy Wilson Artist Community, named after Wilson’s mother. The goal was to preserve Wilson’s legacy and benefit the community through programming, gathering spaces and small artists studios, as well as fellowships for local and national artists and scholars.

To commemorate the opening, August Wilson House’s Year of Celebration kicked off in April with an annual block party to celebrate Wilson’s birthday. Among other special events, Pittsburgh Playwright’s Theater’s production of Wilson’s “Jitney” will take place in the yard at the August Wilson House from Aug. 12-Sept. 18.

The public is also able to purchase a personal brick that will be incorporated into the house’s restoration through the Legacy Brick Campaign. 

Categories: The 412

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