Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians
V, Frankie (Frank Vardaros)
Growing up in Long Island, New York, Frankie V (Frank Vardaros) chose his instrument after hearing a recording of legendary trumpeter Maynard Ferguson (Live at Jimmy's). Classically trained trumpeter Frankie V's musical career began to take shape at an early age. FV spent his early years developing the craft of screaming lead trumpet by performing with countless numbers of big bands, including a two year stint at Disney World in Florida. Later, while attending Berklee College of Music (on a full tuition scholarship), he combined lead trumpet and jazz soloing over the backdrop of his jazz funk group Future Reference.
In 1996, FV began to seriously think of the flugelhorn as a solo instrument, though the trumpet remains his main voice and first love. In summer 1998, Frankie V toured in the trumpet section with Arturo Sandoval's Hot House Big Band beginning at the Boston Globe Jazz Festival, passing through the Saratoga Jazz Festival, JVC Jazz Festival at Carnegie Hall and eventually making its way to the Newport Jazz Festival. Frankie V serves as the trumpet soloist and music director for the Ryles Jazz Orchestra, the house big band for Boston's famed Ryles Jazz Club. FV founded the Ryles Jazz Orchestra in 1997, keeping in mind the great tradition of a house big band in a major jazz venue (i.e. the Village Vanguard Band, Thad Jones Mel Lewis, and Birdland Dream Band, to name a few). Throughout the year, the band performs with many national guest artists, most recently Bobby Shew, Bob Mintzer, Slide Hampton, the late Nick Brignola, Jon Faddis and Bill Watrous.
In the fall of 1999, FV traveled to London England and Abbey Road Studios, where he was the Associate Producer for the debut recording of the John Williams Trumpet Concerto featuring Arturo Sandoval with the London Symphony Orchestra for an upcoming album. In May of 2000, Maynard Ferguson and Arturo Sandoval, along with the Boston Metropolitan Orchestra and Frankie V performed in a concert. Frankie V served as artistic director for the event, and performed in the symphony orchestra's trumpet section. As part of the evening's events, FV performed on flugelhorn his original composition, "Mi Amiga Mi Amore" with the orchestra, Arturo Sandoval's rhythm section, and featured Arturo Sandoval on piano. Frankie V also composed the overture for the concert, Summon the Legends; as well as arranged several of the evening's music for full symphony orchestra.
Frankie V was asked to arrange two Duke Ellington compositions for the San Francisco Symphony with Jon Faddis conducting. The concert took place in June of 2000. He's also been guest soloist with Maynard Ferguson and High Voltage, guest soloist with Arturo Sandoval and the Latin Train, and featured soloist with the Boston Metropolitan Orchestra's Smooth Jazz Holiday Pops Concert, 1999. He's done performances as a sideman with Don Menza, Frank Foster, Ann Margaret, Nick Brignola, and Clark Terry, to name a few. He's also performed with the Orlando Pops Brass and with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. He's a voting member of NARAS (National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences), since 1996.
He received an artist/clinician endorsement from Boosey and Hawkes Music Corporation, 1995 and from Yamaha Musical Instrument Corporation, 1994.
Future Reference: Objective: Boston (1992), Funky Talk (1993), Live at the Regattabar (1995); My Heart Will Go On [Love Theme From Titanic] (single) (1998); Oceans of Dreams (1998);
Smooth Ride (featuring Arturo Sandoval) (2001);
James McKenna: Looking For You (1996); Kai: Let Love Be Your Guide (1999); Artie Barsamian's Boston Big Band: It Always Happens To Me; Tom Roli Big Band: Caricature;
Marvin Stamm: Tribute To Duke Pearson; Various Artists: Boston Jazz, Boston Jazz '96
In 2002, Frankie V was a recepient of a Boston Artist Fellow Award for 2002 from Boston Mayor Thomas Menino and the Boston Cultural Council in a Ceremony at the Parkman House.
The award is in recognition for his performances and concerts and contributions to the community of Boston.