Zupe and Nichols to perform free concert Sunday afternoon
Zupe and Dave Nichols will perform a free concert Sunday, Jan. 22, at Hancock Performing Arts/Community Center. (Submitted photo)
After all, their work has been featured on some of the top shows on television.
They've also lent their music talents to radio and television commercials.
But they're not just about soundtracks and jingles.
The men known as Zupe and Nichols can play a mean blend of blues, jazz and rock.
In fact, their "Speechless" album received a Grindie Award from RadioIndy.com, recognizing "the work of virtuosos" and "top quality production."
In 2011, "Step on It," was nominated for "Best Instrumental Composition" in the Hollywood Music in Media Awards. And both men are multi-year recipients of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) Plus Award, honoring writer members of any genre whose performances are primarily in venues not surveyed.
The duo will bring their distinct sound to the Tri-State area when they perform in concert at the Hancock Performing Arts/Community Center at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 22..
The event is sponsored by the Hancock Arts Council and is free and open to the public.
Both men admit their music is "a smorgasbord of influences."
As a child, Zupe, who lives in Altoona, Pa., remembers his father breaking out his accordion while he and his siblings would dance.
"And my mom was always a fan of pop radio," he said. "My earliest music memory is listening to her radio in the kitchen and Buffalo Springfield's & 'For What It's Worth' came on."
But, at night, classical music on the living room record player filled the house.
Zupe said he was a huge fan of all the music variety shows, including "The Andy Williams Show" and the "Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour."
And when he began his formal music education in elementary school, his teachers instilled a love of music from the big band era.
"So while most of my friends listened to Led Zeppelin or Van Halen, I was getting into Duke Ellington and Count Basie," he recalled.
As a young trumpet student, he also was inspired by Herb Alpert, Doc Severinsen and Miles Davis.
But, in addition to the trumpet, Zupe was a pianist, "so the pop music at the time didn't go unnoticed. The synth-based new wave bands like The Cars, The Babies, The Tubes and Gary Numan definitely made an impression."
For Dave Nichols, who resides in Somerset, Pa., music was a part of his life even before he could read.