The Blue Vipers of Brooklyn are an early jazz, swing, and blues band, composed of acoustic guitar/vocals, upright bass, homemade washboard percussion, trumpet and saxophone. Their repertoire of witty songs from 1920's and 30's is augmented by original tunes with moving yet often bawdy lyrics and catchy 4 part vocal harmony.
“I Love them. They set a great tone for any event.” Bette Midler 5/2010
“The Blue Vipers of Brooklyn provided fantastic entertainment.”
Willie Nelson 6/2007
Featured in New York Magazine Weddings “The Ultimate New York
Wedding Planer” “The Best Bands” Winter 2010
2007- “Subway Idol” contest winners. A month long live performance feature on FOX’s nationally syndicated “The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet.” Voted the top spot by the studio audience and viewers at home.
2010 - Target Free Thursdays David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center, Bette Midler’s New York Restoration Project 15th Birthday ‘Hulaween’ Party at The Waldorf Astoria featuring Paul Simon, Bette Midler’s NYRP Picnic hosted by Nathan Lane. The Vipers’ performance was personally requested by Bette Midler; appeared performing in a May episode of MTV’s “The City”; American Roots Music Symposiums, Gruyeres Switzerland
2009 - Frankie Manning’s 95th Birthday Festival, Manhattan Center Studios; Hogg’s Breath, Green Parrot, Blue Heaven, Key West FL; Target First Saturday Festival, The Brooklyn Museum; Wedding reception for Lisa Loeb, New York City
2008 - The Rochester International Jazz Festival, Rochester, NY; Tropical Heatwave Festival, Tampa, Florida; Long Beach Jazz Festival, Long Beach NY; Bayshore Harbor Festival, Bayshore NY; Brooklyn Public Library Concert Series; Brooklyn Waterfront Artist Coalition Art show; Pierson Park Jazz Concerts, Tarrytown NY; Fort Green Market Concerts, Brooklyn NY; Garrison Art Center Fair, Garrison NY; Ukiah Sundays in the Park Festival, Ukiah CA; Summer Nights! Live Concert Series, Windsor CA; Roots Americana Festival, San Jose CA; Babylon Village Arts Festival, Babylon NY; Summer Hummer Concert Series, Wynnewood PA; featured on WAMC Northeast Public Radio show "Performance Place"
Tropical Heatwave Festival, Tampa, Florida
2007 - “Soundcheck” with John Schaefer on WNYC radio; “Hey Mr. Jesse” featured on Yehoodi.com radio; September Concert” commemorating 911; “Keep America Growing” sponsored by Farm Aid, NYC. The Vipers played for Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the Farm Aid board of directors; the 2nd and 3rd annual “People Building Peace Concert” sponsored by Peace Boat at the United Nations in NYC
2006- “Lincoln Center Out Of Doors Roots of American Music Festival,” Lincoln Center Plaza, NYC
Billy Nemec-guitar/lead vocals
Billy was born in Howells, Nebraska in 1977. Around the age of eighteen he joined up with a traveling carnival “Culpepper Concessions,” which eventually dropped him off in New Orleans. It was under the mentorship of clowns, jugglers, mimes, acrobats and legendary street performers like Anthony “Tuba Fatts” Lacen and The New Orleans Jazz Vipers that Billy honed his musical and performing ability. He spent four years playing for crowds on the streets of New Orleans and traveling with another carnival “Circus Ridikkulous.” In October 2001 Billy moved to New York City and brought with him a vast repertoire of early swing, Dixieland, gospel, country and blues music as well as an amazing ability to draw and hold large crowds wherever he performs.
Chris entertains audiences throughout the week as co-leader of the popular jazz group Lapis Luna, and also as a member of the rousing early swing band The Blue Vipers. In addition to playing everywhere from the Allen Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center to the Rainbow Room and other top venues, Chris is a regular entertainer in Central Park when the weather turns clear. As is a member of double bass section of The Greenwich Village Orchestra Chris timeless works from Bach to Bartok as well as contemporary classical compositions. Chris has had the good fortune to perform with Grammy Award winners Norah Jones, Steve Miller, and Tom Jones, as well as Jane Monheit, Barry Harris, Junior Mance, Anthony Braxton, Bobby Sanabria, Grant Green, Jr., and Billy Harper. Chris is a graduate of The New School of Jazz NYC, where he was educated by accomplished musicians such as Reggie Workman, Buster Williams, Andy McKee, Makanda MacIntyre, and Arnie Lawrence. He is currently studying privately with John Schaeffer, retired Principal Bassist of the New York Philharmonic.
David Langlois-washboard percussion/vocals
David was born in Paris, France, where he took up the drum set at age fifteen and quickly started performing at several jazz venues throughout Europe. At the age of twenty one David invented his signature washboard instrument and refined his technique, which immediately attracted several avenues of professional work, including performing at the highly esteemed Montreux Jazz Festival. Inspired by New Orleans jazz, David founded his own four piece band in 1993 called the “Sun Side Jazz Band,” which recorded two albums and performed in festivals throughout France and Switzerland. It was at this time that David traveled extensively in Africa, especially Senegal, where he collaborated with various bands as a freelance percussionist. In 2004, David arrived in New York, where he had the privilege of playing with Dorado Schmitt, Paquito de Rivera, Angelo Debarre, Brian Torff, Scott Robinson, Gil Goldstein, Andrew Sherman, Orrin Star, Stephane Wrembel, and John Jorgensen. He played as a special guest at the Django Reinhardt Festival at Birdland and Lincoln Center. He has performed at festivals including Djangofest Northeast, Chili Pepper Fiesta at the Botanical Garden in Brooklyn, French Tuesday, and the Django Reinhardt Book Release. He recently toured the West Coast with mandolin master David Grisman as a member of Stephane Wrembel’s Hot Club of New York.
Sam Hoyt was born in Sharon, Ct., and grew up in Millbrook, NY. He started playing traditional jazz with his father, and went on to complete his musical education at Wesleyan University. Sam has had the pleasure of performing and/or recording with such notables as Anthony Braxton, Roswell Rudd, Skah Shah, and Jorge Ben Jor, among others. He resides in Brooklyn, NY with his wife and daughter.
Thom Abbott was raised in a family of musicians in Orem, Utah. He has studied with Tony Malaby, Dave Glasser, Ray Smith, Tim Price, and at the New School University Jazz Program in New York City. A prolific composer and arranger, Abbott also plays and studies a variety of musical instruments, including baritone, alto, and tenor saxophones, clarinet, mandolin, banjo, bass clarinet, flute, bassoon, and piano.
Contact: Chris Pistorino 718.755.6016 firstname.lastname@example.org