Vince Giordano began his odyssey into the world of music at the age of five. The discovery of a slew of 78-rpm-period records in his grandmother's attic, ranging form grand opera to Joe "King" Oliver, ignited the flame. He soon learned tuba, string bass, and bass saxophone. By the age of 15, he was a working musician.
His love of the vintage music of the '20s and '30s led him to explore other facets of this music. He began to read books about jazz. He also began a self-initiated apprenticeship with the legendary William Challis—arranger for the Paul Whiteman Band and the Jean Goldkette Orchestra in the 20s—that lasted four years. This gave Vince the education he sought: a thorough grounding with first-hand experience in the sounds of the great Jazz Age era from Challis and the other older musicians he met and played with.
Vince continued to expand his musical abilities and was soon fully established as a free-lance musician in New York, playing in Broadway pit bands as well as recording sessions and traditional jazz bands. He began collecting original jazz charts, and he soon established Vince Giordano's Nighthawks—a band dedicated to playing the golden era of jazz repertory.
Vince's attention to the authenticity of transcribing arrangements from old recordings, his insistence on precision, and his love of re-creating the music transformed his Nighthawks into the most sought-after jazz band in New York City. Vince Giordano's Nighthawks have been booked for black-tie galas at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the New York Public Library, the New York City Ballet, the Waldorf Astoria, and for private parties for many prominent New Yorkers, as well as the Rainbow Room, the Carlyle Hotel, "21," and the Copacabana.
Vince has been invited to perform at the Smithsonian, Carnegie Hall, the JVC Jazz Festival, Lincoln Center, and the Breda Jazz Festival in Holland. Described by one critic as a "poet of the jazz repertory frozen by time... the authenticity of the music coupled with his first-hand knowledge of the original material provides him with insights, experiences, and an integrity that is unique to the musical world."
Giordano also lent his talents to Bix: An Interpretation of a Legend (RCA), the original soundtrack from the 1990 film. He was typecast as a bass player in Sean Penn's band in Woody Allen's Sweet and Lowdown, and he and the band are featured in Gus Van Sant's latest film, Finding Forrester. Also a big-band historian and collector, Giordano has more than 30,000 scores in his collection, most of which were found on cross-country trips spent poking around in musicians' basements.