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, Parlanto 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.
Pittsburgh is the understated cultural city of the world! There are more gifted artisans and musicians per square mile than you'll find anywhere!
Favorite Pittsburgh musicians/performers
Nelson, Rodney McCoy, Tony Campbell, Luther D, Kenny Blake, Ms E. (Etta Cox), Howie Alexander, Keith Stebler, Dwayne Dolphin, Flo Wilson (You should hear her sing HOME!), Leonard Johnson, Lou Brock, Roger Humphries - oooh, so many...they're all here!
Favorite Jazz Radio or media station
Favorite Pittsburgh Jazz Venue
Used to be Dowe's On 9th...don't have one now. (Our prayers are with Mr. Dowe)
I'm engrossed with the mechanics of music...loving the incredible artists who do it so well! I started looking for musicians - talented people here in Pittsburgh and found a bonanza! More later...just coming on board!
I am so relieved that you have finally joined us. You have been a pioneer in appreciating, showcasing and promoting Pittsburgh-based talent that we are greatly enhanced by your presence here. You'll find everything very user friendly and easy to do. Please post some vids, audios and pics when you get a chance so that we may share in your activities. Also let us know of any events you are planning. Thank you for joining.
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