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

Let's Rise Again-ABABIO Performance Series

ABABIO-In the Akhan language of Ghana West Africa means one who has gone and has returned.
"Let's Rise Again-ABABIO" performance series was produced to share some of my observations and thoughts (as an African American) on my 10 year experience of living in Ghana West Africa.
The performance series was largely funded by MCAI The Multicultural Arts Initiative based in Pittsburgh. We also received wonderful support from BDPA-PGH, Jamil's Global Village, Soul Pitt and Afrika Yetu. We thank you for your wonderful support
This musical performance series featured some of my original songs written while in Ghana along with cover songs by other African/African American and Carribean artists. The genres of music included Jazz, R&B,Reggae and what would be considered gospel.
I had a wonderful set of musicians that were committed to the success of this performance series, and who I want to express appreciation to for their part in making this performance series a success:
Tony Campbell on Alto Sax
Donna Davis on Keyboard
Paco Mahone on Bass Guitar
Jay Constable on Drums
Elie Kihonia on percussion
Special thanks also to Umoja African Arts Company
The message conveyed through the performances was relevant for all peoples and particularly to us African Americans who are suffering from particular issues that are keeping us down as a whole. The message of the songs I performed were of a spiritual nature without using a "religious" message: We as African people have hope and can rise again if we once again reunite and redevelop a close relationship with our original source of strength and blessings which is our Creator and Maker. When we Concentrate more on what we can do for ourselves and seriously importune our Creator for help, we can begin to change our destiny. The words from the song "Let's Rise again" (which I wrote as a theme song in 2005 for Youth Day held during the Pan African Festival called Panafest in Ghana) capsulized that message:

We've got to remember, that the power, of our Creator starts from within
Never think that they, can help us solve this mess we're in
But never lose hope, cause our solutions and cures begin
With the knowledge, of who we are, and reconnecting with our Creator inside you and me...
Excerpt from verse 2
...We can't blame them totally, for ourselves we must take full responsibility.
My thoughts are even though we need to know what happened in our past (very important), why not focus on what we can do to improve ourselves, and the other will take care of itself. Our destiny is in our own hands...
Check out all the words by clicking on the music tab on my web site:
The songs on this site come from the sound track of one of the shows in the performance series. The name of the album from the performance series is, Let's Rise Again-ABABIO. Click on the music tab found on the web sites: Hope you enjoy. Peace and Blessings Ahveekhy

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