Once upon a time...

Nino Frasio was born in Milano (Italy) in 1950.
He was graduated in 1976 from the Universitá degli Studi of Milano and he has worked for more than twenty years with several companies as AFC manager.
In 1999 he started a new career as a business consultant and in December, 2000 he became senior partner of an Italian consulting company.
His first steps in music were taken in 1964 as a guitarist and banjoist.
He studied with Enea Vallesi, one of the more requested orchestra and studio musicians in Milano active from the early '30s throughout the '50s, and followed the Beatles craze - as virtually all the teenage players did then - playing lead guitar and trying to sing in a somewhat understandable English.
The latter was the worse performance of the two.
In 1969 he joined the Italian cast of Up With People! and played many shows on lead guitar and tenor banjo.
He quit in 1971, when he started his 'day job' career, and since then has dedicated himself exclusively to Classic Jazz.
Deepening his studies on banjo, he discovered the 'other' four string tuning and soon was able to double on tenor and plectrum banjo.
RAI, the national Italian TV network, invited him to the broadcast Musica insieme dedicated to the various musical instruments to show the role of the banjo in Classic Jazz.
He founded in 1972 the Olympia Ragtime Band, a pure New Orleans style band in which he played banjo.
In the early '80s he left the Olympia Ragtime Band in the able hands of Roberto Bacciocchi (tpt). to start a busy musical career as a free-lance performer with the many jazz bands active in Northern Italy.
In late 1973 he was enlisted in the Italian Air Force and, during the duty, began the study of cornet and tuba. When he was discharged in 1975 his day job asked him firmly to choose between the two due to the lack of time ... and he chose the tuba (rectius: Sousaphone).
In 1984 he joined, on Sousaphone, the Ambrosia Brass Band which has gained a wide popularity all over Europe by playing in the truest and happiest 'marching style' of the great brass bands of New Orleans.
The band has been invited to all the more important European Jazz Festivals, giving sway to all its 'second liners'.
Do not forget that there are two CDs for sale at the New Orleans based recording company GHB-Jazzology:
In the meantime Nino didn't stop his free-lance gigs on banjo and guitar, and participated in a long-lasting series of weekly live radio broadcasts of the EUROPARADIO network, under the baton of his old pal Vittorio Castelli (reeds).
In 1992 he went back briefly to his beat roots and founded, following that twenty years later or - more exactly - twenty kilos later craze, the Rockodrilli, a small combo consisting of two guitars, keyboard, bass and drums.
Their repertory included 'warhorses' such as Satisfaction or Ticket To Ride, along with the Italian covers of many other international those were the days beat tunes.
Four of the five guys also being managers and professionals by trade, even gained some attention from the monthly magazine Capital - no explanation needed for that name, we think - dedicated to the yuppies world.
A little bit disgusting, isn't it?
1994 saw the end of that overdose of amplifiers, PA systems, electric stringed broomsticks and he went back to Classic Jazz with a new project: the Odd Fellows New Orleans Quartet & Band.
His new goal was - and still is - to offer the young players a good rhythm section to play with: it seems that he succeeded in it.
His ego is also very much satisfied, as he can freely play banjo, guitar and tuba - not simultaneously, he swears - while under other batons he has to stay with what they ask him for.
At the beginning the band played mainly in the Milano area but soon came invitations to Jazz festivals such as the Sommer Jazz Festival in Wendelstein (Germany), the Festa New Orleans Jazz Music 2000 in Rapperswil (Switzerland) and the New Orleans Jazz Festival of Celerina (Switzerland).
In 1997 he joined, on banjo and guitar, the Jumpin' Jazz Ballroom Orchestra, a ten piece band that played a repertory of Classic Jazz tunes of the '20s, '30s and '40s, philologically performed using both original and newly written scores.
His poor sight reading improved slightly for that reason but not as much to hurt his playing.
Anyway it seems that he began to like all those little black spots, because in 1999 he accepted an offer by Vittorio Castelli to join on guitar a similar reading outfit, the Blue Feeling Orchestra.
Vittorio Castelli is widely well known all over Europe as a Jazz writer and journalist and, also as a competent Ellington connoisseur.
Getting older, Nino slowed down his free-lance playing and started to look for his old music pals ... thus, in September 2000 he once more joined his very first band, the Olympia Ragtime Band, happy to have the chance again to play his banjo in a strict New Orleans style under the baton - that sometimes turns out to be a bat instead - of Roberto Bacciocchi.
In January 2001 the original roster of the Ambrosia Brass Band split: it may happen after more than 16 years of living and playing together !
The 7/9 of that band - and Nino is among them - promptly decided to found a brand new band, by the name of Pegasus Brass Band.
Soon came invitations to important European Jazz festivals, whose organizers didn't forget the musicians that gave to the old band its spirited swing.
In April 2002 Nino was invited to play regularly with the Milano Rhythm Kings led by Giorgio Alberti, the very well known Italian cornet player that has been one of the stars of Bix Beiderbecke Memorials in Davenport (USA).
In 2007 he become a member of the Savannah Serenaders, a very interesting band led by Roberto Meroni.
From time to time he also plays gigs with Luciano Invernizzi, the famed trombonist, and his Bovisa New Orleans Jazz Band.

Nino has played also with the Criterion Brass Band (GB), Bill Carter (USA), Herbert Christ (D), Rudy Balliu (B), Teddy Fullick (GB), Jim Gunton (GB), Kenny Milne (GB), Emile Martyn (GB), Philippe Desmet (B), John Service (GB), Rowan Smith (AU).

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