Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks turn up the jazz volume
It was that period of "anything goes" in American history. World War I was over and The Depression has not set in. The only fly in the ointment was Prohibition.
An ace was a dollar bill, cheaters were eyeglasses, a flat tire was a bore, and if you were told to get a wiggle on, you'd best get moving.
That era of flappers, moonshine and swells comes to Wilton Sunday, Oct. 21, when Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks present a concert of toe-tapping big band music from the Jazz Era at St. Matthew's Church, 36 New Canaan Road.
Presented by The Arts at St. Matthew's, the program begins at 4.
The Nighthawks is a Grammy Award-winning 11-piece orchestra that presents 1920s-1930s classics and period popular songs on authentic instruments including an aluminum string bass, period hand-painted drums, enormous clarinet megaphones, and a Stroh violin with a horn.
Stephen Holden of The New York Times labeled the band's performance as "an erupting wellspring of euphoria: that would describe the vintage swing emanating from Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks..." He went on to say of the band's performance at the 92nd Street Y earlier this year, "In its lighthearted way, the music swing as intensely as any being created today."
"It's my calling," Mr. Giordano has said, "to help keep alive the spirit and excitement of this music."
In addition to being a musician, Mr. Giordano is a music historian, specializing in that period, and thus has been involved in many projects requiring vintage music for television and film.
Music from the film The Aviator features the Nighthawks playing Stardust, Yellow Dog Blues and Shake That Thing. Other films include Woody Allen and Sean Penn's Sweet and Low Down, Francis Ford Coppola's The Cotton Club, Robert DeNiro's The Good Shepherd, Michael Mann's Public Enemies, and Sam Mendes' Revolutionary Road and Away We Go.
The band's CD Cheek to Cheek features such standards as Shall We Dance?, A Fine Romance, and Night and Day. While It's De Lovely — The Authentic Cole Porter Collection features the band's renditions of Anything Goes and You're the Top.
Most recently, Mr. Giordano and his band headlined the Litchfield Jazz Festival and won a 2012 Grammy for their work on the first seasons of the HBO series Boardwalk Empire. The band can also be heard on the USA Network series Royal Pains.
The Nighthawks include Mr. Giordano on vocal, bass sax, tuba, and string bass; Andy Stein on violin, bari sax; Mike Ponella and Jon-Erik Kellso on trumpet; Jim Fryer on trombone; Dan Block, Mark Lopeman and Dan Levinson on reeds; Peter Yarin on piano; Ken Salvo on banjo and guitar; and Arnie Kinsella, drums.
Concert admission is $40 (patron), $20 (regular adult price), and $10 (student). Tickets may be purchased at the door or online at stmatthewswilton.org.