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
Pitt Jazz Week 2009 to Feature Community Outreach Activities, Lecture, Film, and Nov. 7 Concert
International jazz masters to perform at 39th annual event

PITTSBURGH-Jazz enthusiasts from throughout the region will be on the University of Pittsburgh campus Nov. 3 though Nov. 7 for the 39th annual Pitt Jazz Seminar and Concert, the longest-running event of its kind in the United States.

A stellar group of international jazz musicians will hold free on-campus lecture/demonstrations, visit area schools and community venues, and convene for the annual concert at 8 p.m. Nov. 7 in Carnegie Music Hall, 4400 Forbes Ave., Oakland.

Guest performers include George Cables, piano; Terri Lyne Carrington, drums; Leon Lee Dorsey, Pitt assistant professor of jazz studies and coordinator of Pitt's Jazz Studies Program, bass; Benny Golson, tenor saxophone; Donald Harrison, alto saxophone; Jimmy Owens, trumpet; Yotam Silberstein, guitar; and Lew Soloff, trumpet.

Golson's participation in the Pitt event occurs the same year that the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts has honored the sax man-a composer, arranger, lyricist, and producer-with a concert titled “Benny Golson at 80.” Hosted by actor Danny Glover, with appearances by the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, Al Jarreau, Ron Carter, and others, the Jan. 24 concert featured Golson performing his compositions that have become jazz standards.

“Benny wrote the kinds of tunes people whistled and sang,” said Billy Taylor, artistic director for jazz at the Kennedy Center, adding that Golson is also popular with those who recognize his distinctive sound from various movie soundtracks and music for TV shows like “M*A*S*H,” “Mission Impossible,” and “The Cosby Show.”

Golson says he is looking forward to returning to Pitt to lecture and perform, an experience he says is “always fulfilling.”

Founded by Nathan Davis, director of Pitt's Jazz Studies Program, the Pitt Jazz Seminar and Concert was the first academic jazz seminar in the country to feature international artists connecting with aspiring students in a lecture format, then performing together as an ensemble.

Details on the Pitt Jazz Week events follow:

The Nov. 7 concert is a one-of-a-kind performance, given the diverse playing styles and the show's impromptu nature. Tickets are $18; students with a valid ID pay $8. Tickets are available by calling ProArtsTickets at 412-394-3353 or visiting Tickets also are available at the University's William Pitt Union (WPU) box office, 3959 Fifth Ave., Oakland. Student tickets can only be purchased at the WPU.

The Honorable William R. Robinson, District 10 representative on the Allegheny County Council and former Pennsylvania state representative, will serve as the evening's master of ceremonies. At intermission, one of the guest artists will be presented with the University of Pittsburgh Jazz Seminar Committee Award and two other musicians (one living and one deceased) will be inducted into the University of Pittsburgh International Academy of Jazz Hall of Fame.

Saturday, Nov. 7
10-11:15 a.m.
“Trumpet Kings: The Music of Roy Eldridge, Dizzy Gillespie, Chet Baker, and Miles Davis”
Lew Soloff

11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m.
“A Tribute to Jazz in Film: “The Terminal””
Benny Golson

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