Matt Tolentino, who shares his birthday with Fred Astaire, was born May 10, 1985 in Dallas, TX, and has worked hard to preserve the music of generations past, to bring the music of yesterday to the modern audience of today. A true multi-instrumentalist, he is equally at home on accordion, piano, clarinet, tuba, piano, tenor guitar, banjo, and saxophones, particularly C melody and bass sax.
When he was 8, he was given a compilation of recordings from the 1920s and early 1930s, and was his first exposure of this niche music... it wouldn't be long before he began haunting junk shops and estate sales for sheet music and records.
Matt Tolentino began his musical venture at 11 with clarinet in the school band, and within a few years had added saxophone, tuba, piano, and accordion to the ranks. High school was spent playing in school bands, and on weekends playing private parties and restaurants. Flash forward to 2006 when he began to travel and tour with bands from Texas and Pennsylvania, providing him with much needed experience - things you can't learn in school.
In 2007 he assembled his now renowned Singapore Slingers orchestra. With a few hundred 'stock' arrangements in his collection, all he lacked was a band with which to play them. He assembled a group of dedicated, talented players, a great number of which are still with the orchestra to this day. A hallmark established early on was an emphasis on variety, thus they perform just about everything from 1895 - 1935. He didn't want to form a jazz band, a swing band, or a ragtime band - he wanted one band that could do it all, and that's tradition of variety continues to this day.
Matt would soon create The Matt Tolentino Band and various smaller incarnations of the orchestra to play for dances, clubs, private and corporate parties - anywhere hot jazz and dance music is requested. And while a great focus is on ragtime, jazz, and swing he is also well versed in the traditional European and ethnic music. The need and request for a polka band was answered when he organized his Royal Klobasneks polka band which is seen at festivals across the country.
Some of his great and varied influences include Vince Giordano, Adrian Rollini (Matt owns one of his bass saxophones), Al Bowlly, Paul Whiteman, Scott Joplin, and Myron Floren. He has traveled far and wide to play - his music has made him a lot of friends, and even brought his wife Danielle and him together, through a mutual love of this music- what started as friendship in 2006 led to marriage in June 2010.
Today Matt makes his home in Cincinnati, Ohio, and divides his time between there and his native Dallas, TX. Matt will continue to bring the music of yesterday to the audience of today, presented with respect and reverence - the way it should be.