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‘Shadow Man: The Sammy Nestico Story’ Celebrates 94 Years Of The Jazz Giant

Jazzed Magazine • News • April 4, 2018

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A new documentary  on 94-year-old Sammy Nestico entitled “Shadow Man: The Sammy Nestico Story” profiles the jazz and big band giant. After 16 years in the making, the campaign for the film recently finished on Kickstarter.

The feature-length documentary explores the music, art, humanity, impact, and life of Sammy Nestico. Filmmaker diane estelle Vicari notes she wanted to preserve Nestico’s legacy through the film.

“Over the past century, Sammy Nestico has been a giant contributor to the world of music,” says Vicari, “a true maestro – as a composer, orchestrator, writer, and arranger across the genres of classical, jazz, and big band sounds. He is also a quiet giant, helping to mold careers of musicians, some considered icons. He often worked behind the scenes … like a shadow. That’s the basis for the title of the film.”

Sammy Nestico recently turned 94 years old His most recent Grammy nomination came only a year ago, at the age of 93.

“The film is also a profile in Americana, and the post-Depression American Dream,” says Vicari. “Sammy grew up in the heartland, was the man of the house at 10, was a self-taught musician, became a master arranger in the Big Band Era, and always put music and musical sounds above ego and image. It’s an honor and a privilege for me to tell his story and I am proud to have become a good friend with Sammy and his wife Shirley.”

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