Jerry Vivino: Reviews
Jerry Vivino: Back East (CD)
April 19, 2014
Giving him the kind of freedom and security it would take a Pete Christlieb to explain to you, Vivino's sax has been part of Conan's show band for 20 years and it really lets him explore jazz. However, he's a New Yorker and the one thing a secure west coast job doesn't give him is New York---until he gets to take his busman's holidays. This set is as New York as 52nd Street and it's a real breath of fresh air in a vastly polluted world. Not trying to be retro or nuevo, Vivino is just kicking it the way he feels it, and you're going to feel it too. Killer stuff.
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Jerry Vivino & the LA/NY Jazz Trio: Half Moon Bay, CA
June 9, 2013
By Bill Leikam
Published: All About Jazz - June 22, 2013
Three top-flight jazz musicians--saxophonist/falutist Jerry Vivino (soprano, tenor and baritone), the ever-inspiring pianist Mitchel Format and stand-up bassist Keven Axt (touted as being Los Angeles' busiest bassist)--presented themselvesl on a breezy, sunny afternoon at the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society, aka the Douglas Beach house. As these three jazz musicians took the stage, they carried with them deep histories and experiences, hving played with some of jazz's legendary bandleaders and musicians: Forman played with Stan Getz and Gerry Mulligan; Axt played with Chuck Mangione and Phil Woods; and Vivino packed with him his present gig as a member of the Basic Cable Band, the house-band for televisions's The Conan O'Brien Show, Wynton Marsalis and many nore. As they walked on, the audience acknowledged them with hearty applause, having come to ehar selections from the song books of traditional jazz composters including George Gershwin Cole Porter, John Coltrane, Thad jones and Thelonious Monk, among others.
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ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
Amateur Night? Not for These Bands
By TAMMY LA GORCE
Published: New York Times: December 30, 2007
AMONG the familiar tenets of successful musicians—play loud, live fast, blame the bad stuff on the drummer—there’s one that is rarely heard beyond the tour bus.
“It’s well known in the business that New Year’s Eve is amateur night for bands,” said Jerry Vivino, saxophonist in the Max Weinberg 7, the featured players on “Late Night With Conan O’Brien.” He is a veteran of many Dec. 31 gigs with his own jazz quartet. “People are out getting drunk,” he said, “so the music doesn’t matter. Anybody can play and people will have a good time.”
But Mr. Vivino—a Paterson native and brother of the rock guitarist Jimmy Vivino (who also plays in the Max Weinberg 7) and the comedian Uncle Floyd Vivino—was speaking broadly. For the third time since 2004, he and his band will play this New Year’s Eve at Shanghai Jazz in Madison, where revelers, he said, are respectful. “This is an educated crowd,” he said. “If people are looking for a certain type of party—loud, a lot of drunk people—they’re not going to find it in this setting.”
Across New Jersey, more than a few well-known clubs and the home-grown artists who love them are doing their best to erase the amateur-night designation. Like Jerry Vivino, who now lives in Nanuet, N.Y., the New Brunswick-based post-punk band Thursday will play the room they consider their home venue, according to Geoff Rickly, the front man: Starland Ballroom, in Sayreville.
Not that Thursday is expecting the same dressed-up, well-behaved crowd that Mr. Vivino is.
“We’ve done a holiday show the last four years, but never New Year’s Eve,” said Mr. Rickly, who just completed a tour with Thursday behind this year’s “Kill the House Lights” (Victory Records), a live CD partly recorded at Starland Ballroom. “This year we’re taking the plunge.”
What he expects, he said, is what he usually sees at the Sayreville haunt, only with “more of a buzz.”
“We’ll have the young kids who see us on TV”—the band is an MTV staple—“and then we’ll also get the biker rock dudes who hang out at the bar.”
At midnight, the crowd can expect surprises beyond the typical countdown. “It’s the band’s 10th anniversary, and Starland Ballroom is a special room to us, so we have some stuff planned,” Mr. Rickly said. “We also have a song called ’Jet Black New Year.’ We’ll play that.
“People not familiar with the scene probably would think otherwise, but over all it’s a very optimistic vibe when we play—it’s a party. That’s what we’re expecting New Year’s Eve.”
Farther south at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park, the Shore-based jam band Juggling Suns will hold court for the second year in a row.
“At this point, it feels like family for us, because we’ve played there a lot and been on the Jersey Shore our whole existence,” said Mark Diomede, of Point Pleasant, the singer-songwriter who formed Juggling Suns a decade ago. “It’s a great night to play, because people want to relax. But they’re also in a really good state of mind—they’re with friends, and they’re reflecting on the year and thinking good things or hoping to forget about it.
“It’s just a great hometown gig,” he said. “If anybody gets rowdy, it’s usually in a good way.”
Even if it’s not, the Stone Pony is continuing an arrangement it made last year with the nearby Berkeley Carteret and Empress Hotels. “They’ve made some special deals for rooms, and they’re both a short walk away, so if you do get really drunk, there’s no need to worry about driving,” said Mr. Diomede, who said he plans to make the rounds to join fans and friends at both hotels after the band wraps its set, probably around 3 a.m.
For some musicians who will play New Year’s Eve in New Jersey, including the Brooklyn-based indie rocker Mike Doughty, who will perform at Mexicali Blues in Teaneck, the comfort of welcoming the new year alongside a hometown crowd is missing. Which can make the midnight protocol daunting.
“I have a bunch of questions that still aren’t answered,” Mr. Doughty said earlier this month by telephone from British Columbia, where he was touring. “What if I have two minutes to kill before midnight? What if I’m in the middle of the song when it’s midnight? Do I do the countdown or does someone else?”
Ultimately, he figures, he will follow his instincts: “I guess I’ll observe the first rule of rocking,” he said, “which is to keep on rocking.”
Jerry Vivino: Article from Essex Journal
Jerry Vivino: Review from Jazz Times
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