Sound Scene Express

Deutschtown Music Festival Preview – The Chiodi Trio – Interview

The Chiodi Trio will be opening the Wigle Whiskey Barrelhouse and Whiskey Garden (1055 Spring
Garden Ave.) at 12 PM. The outdoor all ages venue will be hosted by Hugh Twyman of HughShows
music blog. Check out our interview below with Chiodi Trio consisting of bassist JT Chiodi, the father of Nico Chiodi, 15, and Enzo Chiodi, 14, both on the tenor banjo.

Band Profile:   “The Chiodi Trio is a father-and-his-two-sons band, playing lots of old-style favorites and
Americana music on two banjos and a bass. Their music is upbeat and lively and gets toes
tapping. They can be seen regularly in various venues throughout the city, including in front
of Wholey’s Market in the Strip nearly every weekend.”

Sound Scene Express:   When did you form your band? What inspired you to make music

Chiodi Trio:   We formed our trio to participate on-stage at the banjo conventions we
travel to each year. Because the boys are the youngest players at any of
these conventions, everyone wanted the chance to see their progress each
year. They didn’t want to go on stage alone, so Dad agreed to back them up
on bass. We had such a good time playing together and coming up with play
lists and performance idea, we decided to keep playing year round.

SSE:   Have you been in any other bands?

CT:   We were born out of The Pittsburgh Banjo Club, where
we’re still active members. Jt started playing with them in 2002 and by
2003 Nico and Enzo were featured singers for one song per show. By 2008,
they were sitting in the 2nd row playing along with all of the other

SSE: Do you play original music?

CT:   We cover the oldies.

SSE: What genre of music do you consider your work to be? Who are your
major influences?

CT:   Traditional jazz and Americana music. Jazz with a twang, Bluegrass with
some improv.

The Pittsburgh Banjo Club has been our biggest influence.

SSE:    What band would you love to open a show for?

CT:   Anyone? Anywhere?… The Decemberists or The Devil Makes Three would be

SSE: Where have you performed? What are your favorite venues?

CT:   We’ve made a few rounds in our young life. Kennywood, Carnegie Museum,
Carnegie Library, Phipps Conservatory, Mellon Park and many others. We love
our home base at Wholey’s in the Strip District. Nothing prepares you for
the big stages like playing on the sidewalk with no barrier between you and
your listeners. We always come home with great stories of the people we see
and meet.

SSE: Do you perform outside of Pittsburgh?

CT: We attend banjo conventions each year in Springfield, OH and Detroit, MI
and another that rotates cities. This year, we’re going to Branson, MO

SSE: What are your rehearsals generally like? Do you have a set time each
week, in which you practice or are rehearsals more spontaneous?

CT:   We have rehearsal on our calendar for every Monday evening. It gets a
little rough to stick to in the summer when we’re playing out 4-5 times per
week, but we try. It’s one of the perks of being a family band… we’re
already under one roof, so scheduling is a bit easier than for other bands,
we suppose.

SSE: What do you think of the Pittsburgh Music Scene?

CT:   We love it. Pittsburgh was just named by Time Magazine as one of the top 25
music scenes in the country. Considering The Pittsburgh Banjo Club was
given as one of the reasons for the ranking, we couldn’t agree more.

SSE: Who is your favorite Pittsburgh band/ musician?

CT:   Too hard to choose! Nico and Enzo have 2 cousins who are also active in
Pittsburgh bands and we have many musical friends.

SSE: You guys have a pretty early set, what bands do you plan on seeing at
Deutschtown Music Festival.

CT:   We hope to catch Commonheart. Wish we could see the Shelf Life String Band,
but they’re playing at the same time! The struggle is real.

SSE:   Where cans fans gain access to your music?

CT:   We have a CD fresh off the press. Our first, titled The Chiodi Trio Family
Album. We’ll have it for sale on and
eventually our website at You can also see a few videos

We’d love to have more Facebook and Twitter followers keeping up to date on
our performances.

SSE: Is there anything else you would like to add?

CT:   We’re so thankful for the Deutchtown Music Festival Committee for choosing
us. We know we’re not the conventional choice, but we think we’ll bring a
lot to the family-friendly element of the event and look forward to a great

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