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

Pittsburgh's Black Honors event takes place at CCAC

When and where: North Side’s CCAC-Allegheny Campus, Foerster Students Service Center, Saturday night.

Stop the Violence Pittsburgh and CCAC presented Pittsburgh’s Black Honors, a History of Black Pittsburgh from 1755 to present, honoring distinguished African-Americans in the Pittsburgh community working to uplift and inspire. Presentations included Samuel E. Black, director of African-American programs at the Heinz History Center, who spoke on the abolitionist movement; Sean Gibson, president of the Josh Gibson Foundation, who talked about achievements in sports; and Sonya Toler, Pittsburgh public information officer who talked about black politicians.

Why celebrate the achievements of African-Americans in Pittsburgh? “Our history of civil rights is important and we must continue to tell those stories to the next generation and show appreciation to those that came before us,” said William Marshall, CEO of Stop the Violence Pittsburgh. “I want my legacy to be someone who continued to highlight the legacy of others, bringing unity back to our community.” Charlene Foggie-Barnett of the Teenie Harris archive, Carnegie Museum of Art: oral history coordinator and archive specialist added, “We appreciate and carry on the work of those who came before us. Pittsburgh is particularly lush in community crusaders, and it’s an honor to honor them.”

#QuotableMoments: Media personality Chris Moore: “The world today is a reminder that the more things change the more they stay the same, and everything is a struggle. We must continue to fight for positive change and not become complacent.” Nelson Harrison of the Pittsburgh Jazz Network on the importance of music and culture: “Jazz is the only art form considered a national treasure. This music is so powerful. More powerful than any gun, it has the power to change the human spirit. That is the blues, so chase your culture, find your roots.”

#SEEN: Quintin B. Bullock, president of CCAC, who said: “This event engages and informs our youth, hopefully motivating them to lead by the examples set before them.” Also #SEEN enjoying entertainment by Soul Raydio and the Sankofa drum ensemble: Mary Henderson as well as event co-hosts Aerion Abney and Ashley Johnson.

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