Here’s where Vince Giordano goes for good jazz
By Barbara Hoffman
July 9, 2016 | 3:22am
Giordano scours the Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market for music memorabilia.
Photo: Vanessa Lenz
If you saw “Boardwalk Empire,” you’ve heard Vince Giordano’s music. He and his band, the Nighthawks, help keep the jazz of the ’20s and ’30s alive. Now the Brooklyn-born and -based 64-year-old is the subject of a new doc, “Vince Giordano: There’s a Future in the Past,” screening Sunday at the 92nd Street Y. He and his band play the Iguana NYC club on 54th Street on Monday and Tuesday nights but, as he tells BARBARA HOFFMAN, you’ll find him elsewhere on the weekends.
I’m an avid reader, and there’s this place in Midtown called Chartwell Booksellers. It’s small — I like to keep the small businesses going, because I’m a small business myself! — and it doesn’t have everything under the sun, not the self-help books, not the “something for dummies” books. The fellow who runs it is a jazz fan. He gets lots of books on Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington, and he’s got nice jazz music playing in the background.
Every weekend there’s another great treasure hunt at the Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market. I’ve found a lot of sheet music, piano rolls (I have one of those player pianos) and pictures of bands and stars from the ’20s and ’30s. I found a beautiful 11-by-17-inch picture of the legendary group the Boswell Sisters, who were a great influence on the Andrews Sisters, and I got it for $10.
Birdland is probably one of the longest-running jazz establishments in the city. They always have exciting music there. I’ve seen Michael Feinstein and Freddy Cole, Nat King Cole’s brother, who’s a pianist and singer, and certain times of the year they have a Django [Reinhardt] festival. I like their “quiet” policy: They have little cards on the table that say something like, “Please respect the musicians — no unnecessary talking.” I’ve seen one or two people asked to leave because they were upsetting the rest of the people there. The food? It’s great. I’m getting up there in the age department, so I just get a big garden salad and some fish or chicken — I don’t test their gourmet capabilities.
Vince Giordano – There is a Future in the Past – Trailer MANIFF2016