He was also founder and director of the University of Pittsburgh Annual Jazz Seminar and Concert, the first academic jazz event of its kind in the country. He also helped to found the university's William Robinson Recording Studio as well as establish the International Academy of Jazz Hall of Fame located in the school's William Pitt Union and the University of Pittsburgh-Sonny Rollins International Jazz Archives. Davis retired as director of the Jazz Studies Program at Pitt in 2013. Davis also served as the editor of the International Jazz Archives Journal. One of Davis' best known musical associations was heading the Paris Reunion Band (1985-1989), which at different times included Nat Adderley, Kenny Drew, Johnny Griffin, Slide Hampton, Joe Henderson, Idris Muhammad, Dizzy Reece, Woody Shaw, and Jimmy Woode.
Davis also toured and recorded with the post-bop ensemble leading Roots which he formed in 1991. Davis composed various pieces, including a 2004 opera entitled "Just Above My Head". Davis is the author of 'Writings In jazz', an analysis of the history and development of the music. On October 5, 2013, Davis was awarded the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation's BNY Mellon Jazz Living Legacy Award at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Davis died in April 2018 in Palm Beach, Florida, at the age of 81. Discography As leader 1965: The Hip Walk (with Jimmy Woode, Kenny Clarke, Francy Boland, Carmell Jones) 1965: Peace Treaty (with Woody Shaw, Jean-Louis Chautemps, René Urtreger, Jimmy Woode, Kenny Clarke) 1965: Happy Girl (with Woody Shaw, Larry Young, Jimmy Woode, Billy Lewis Brooks) 1967: The Rules of Freedom (with Hampton Hawes, Jimmy Garrison, Art Taylor) 1969: Jazz Concert in a Benedictine monastery 1971: Makatuka (with Mike Taylor, Virgil Walters, Joe Kennedy, Don Depaotis, Nelson Harrison, Wheeler Winstead) 1972: 6th Sense In The 11th House (with Richard Davis, Alan Dawson, Roland Hanna) 1976: Suite for Dr. Martin Luther King 1976: If (with Abraham Laboriel, George Caldwell, Dave Palmar, Willie Amoaku) 1982: Faces of Love 1987: London by Night 1996: Nathan Davis 1998: Two Originals: Happy Girl & Hip Walk 1999: I'm A Fool To Want You 2003: Rules of Freedom 2006: Happy Girl 2009: The Best of 1965-76 2. Nathan Davis from North Carolina town of Southern Pines is a singer, songwriter and guitarist who died in 2006. 3. Another one Nathan Davis is an percussionist of a chamber avant-garde duo Odd Appetite.
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