Singer Chris Ruggiero at age 23 is from an era far removed from the vintage 1950s rock and roll sounds of The Duprees, Paul Anka, Frankie Valli and other musical stars of the era.
However, Ruggiero is a fervent fan of the rock and roll era and will showcase his love and skills in performing vintage songs ranging from the 1950s through early 70s at his concert on Friday, March 17 at Aventura Arts & Cultural Center in Aventura.
“I have to thank my grandfather, a rock and roll fan, who introduced me to the music of all his idols and I feel so blessed to come and know these great performers, such as ‘The Duprees’, ‘Jay and the Americans’, and so many others,” said Ruggiero.
Chris Ruggiero (Photo credit: Leesa Richards)
Although Ruggiero did not consider himself a professional singer when he was 18, producer TJ Lubinsky, known for his multiple nostalgic music Public Broadcasting Service specials used to augment fund raising drives for PBS, asked Ruggiero to perform on the 2018 PBS Special on Doo Wop 1950s music.
“I was so excited that so many of the performers I heard of came on stage, like ‘Jay and the Americans’, ‘The Del Satins’, ‘The Skyliners’ and Charlie Thomas of ‘The Drifters”. At 18, I was so inspired to sing the music that I loved with them on stage.”
Prior to his appearance on the 2018 Lubinsky “My Music PBS Special”, Ruggiero never performed live on stage. But because most of the vintage 1950s musical stars were vocally past their prime years by 2018, Lubinsky wanted Ruggiero and other young singers to sing with the vintage groups in recreating the range, depth and emotions of the songs made famous.
Chris Ruggiero (Photo Credit: Leesa Richards)
Lubinsky was impressed with Ruggiero, noting how much he sounded like the vintage singers on the PBS Special. Lubinsky asked Ruggiero to sing two Paul Anka hit songs “Diana” and “Put Your Head On My Shoulder.” to much applause from the live audience.
However, the moment that impressed Lubinsky and viewers of the 2018 “My Music’ PBS Special the most was Ruggiero being the lead singer backing up “The Dupree”s in singing their original hit song “You Belong To Me.”
“It was surreal, such a memorable performance. ‘The Duprees’ were always one of my favorite groups. I always loved these groups that presented music with such class.”
Since his PBS appearance in 2018, Ruggiero’s career has blossomed, touring across the United States, scoring multiple appearances in Las Vegas, performing in another PBS “My Music” television fund raising special and recording four CDs.
Ruggiero’s most well-known CD is “I Am Chris Ruggiero”, featuring twelve songs, such as “Anyone Who Had A Hart”, “My Cherie Amour”, “This Magic Moment” among others. Ruggiero credits music arranger Charlie Callelo’s skills for putting the right chords, notes and instruments together with his singing voice to make the 50s songs vintage.
Ruggiero will perform songs from his four albums, including one of his favorites “Unchained Melody” in his concert at Aventura Center.
Ruggiero is especially proud of helping audiences reconnect with the vintage songs of a bygone era.
“I tell my story through the songs and share on stage how I came to love the songs. I want the audience to feel like they are my family. I love taking audiences back to the time of their first kiss, the first prom, or a daydream they fondly remember.”
Although most of the audience will be fans who remembered the vintage songs, Ruggiero will not be surprised to see many fans in the Aventura Center audience from his generation.
“These songs are beautiful and timeless, so I have seen people my age at my shows, enjoying the songs in the same way that I did when I first heard them from my grandfather,” said Ruggiero.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Singer Chris Ruggiero will sing vintage rock and roll music from the 1950s-70s with his band in concert on Friday, March 17 at 7:30 P.M. at Aventura Arts & Cultural Center, 3385 NE 188 Street in Aventura. Tickets are $45-55. For tickets and more information, go to aventuracenter.org or call 954-466-0222.
To learn more about Chris Ruggiero, go to chrisruggierosings.com