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

Pianist Extraordinaire John D'Amico joined the ancestors on January 1, 2010

"It is with great sadness that I tell you my dear friend of 45 years, John Damico, passed away this morning at 11:35 AM. John was a giant of a person, a man of great faith and tenacity who fought a good fight with cancer these past 5 years. His suffering is over now, and I know he is at peace with his Lord.

I spoke with Donna just a little while ago - she said the funeral will likely be at Slater's in Greentree, but didn't know when. Our prayers are with Donna, the boys, and extended family as they grieve for their loss.

God blessed John, and blessed us all with his life and music."..
Bill Kuhn


Please add your comments and memories to this blog post. We'd like to create a place where he can always be seen and heard by those who knew and loved him and also by those who never had the privilege.


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Comment by Bill McCarthy on January 6, 2010 at 1:37am
John was the most down-to-earth artist that anyone could image, even though I only talked twice with him. I remember another musician's comment when I mentioned John's name, he said that John was a "monster" talent at the piano. He was soooo right. When playing jazz, John was an awesome player to behold. He will be sorely missed. Could somebody identify John's albums so that I can replace the 2 that I lost or lent out ?
Comment by Devorah Segall on January 3, 2010 at 10:43pm
John D'Amico- What a beautiful person and amazing, soulful musician. triumphant spirit. He used his musical gifts and skills in the highest way- bringing so much light into this world- connecting so many people from the heart..This is music manifested at its highest purpose(I believe) and what John brought into this world will never be extinguished. He was and always will be a blessing. May we all be inspired to go forward in lighting those lights through our own creativity and welcoming connection with each other. Music matters more than ever.Shine your light.
Comment by Steve Hubbard on January 2, 2010 at 10:50pm
John's son Jarrod D'Amico reports: "My dads viewings will be 2-4 & 7-9 Mon & Tues Slater Funeral Home Greentee road. Funeral 11 am Wednesday."
Comment by Troy W Campbell on January 2, 2010 at 10:40pm
I am shocked by this notice John was a great musician and friend and was a Fraterity brother of my son Scott Campbell who lives in Chicago. May the good lord give him peace and eternal life. Troy Campbell
Comment by Anthony (Tony) Janflone on January 2, 2010 at 10:21pm
The passing of John D'Amico. His suffering is done!! He is now in the Prescience of Our Lord Jesus Christ. He was a wonderful musiciac and man. Please those of who will pray for his wonderful family. Thank you all from all my heart.

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