NEAL & THE VIPERS are a Rhode Island-based band who play American Roots Music encompassing blues, rock & roll, rockabilly, and surf, that will get you up out of your chair to dance all night long! When the show is over, you will feel full of energy and looking forward to catching the next show.
The Vipers are professional musicians; experts in each of their instruments with decades of playing experience, which is one of the keys to their amazing performances. You can feel the chemistry between the Vipers as they play many original songs off their CDs as well as covering classic songs such as "Little Wing", "Hey Joe", "Right Place Wrong Time" and instrumentals like "Sleepwalk" and "Pipeline". The Vipers always put their own spin on these classic songs, making them their own. Some fans even say that they enjoy hearing their versions better than the original.
Maybe you're thinking, how did it all begin? Neal Vitullo, lead guitarist, and Dave Howard, lead vocalist are the original founders of what started as "Young Neal and the Vipers" in the early 1980s. Steve Bigelow joined the band a few years later and they played all over the northeast and regularly in New York City, where they caught the attention of Atlantic Record founder and president Ahmet Ertegun. He signed them to their label in 1989. Later that same year, the Vipers were signed to Atlantic Records and played 300 shows.
Their first CD, "Hooloovoo" was released on "Big Noise" records in 1991, where it went on to be the best selling CD in 1991 and 1992 by "TheNicePaper" as well as the 1991 Critic's Choice Award from "The Providence Journal". "I'm Finally Alone", their second CD also released by "Big Noise", went on to be the best of 1993 from "The Providence Journal" and the best selling CD of 1994 from "TheNicePaper". They continued to win awards from "Best Music Poll," "The Providence Phoenix," and the "Best of Bands" to the "Best of Blues Acts" from the "Hartford Advocate".
Steve Bigelow and Dave Howard decided to leave the Vipers back in the early 90's to pursue other projects while Neal continued as the lead vocalist and lead guitarist, playing as a trio with The Vipers. Neal never stopped recording CDs and touring as far west as Texas as well as all over Europe. Neal was signed by Bob Greenly to King Snake Records for 4 albums, in addition to 2 self-produced Live CDs between 1991-2012. The Vipers also have tracks featured in 9 other compilation albums released by Big Noise from 1992-98.
Current drummer Mike LaBelle joined the Vipers in 2003 when The Vipers were still a trio until Dave Howard and Steve Bigelow reunited with Neal in 2010, coming "full circle". In October 2010, after 20 years of not sharing the same stage together, Neal, Dave, and Steve reunited together with Mike on drums to play at the Knickerbocker Cafe in Westerly, RI. Soon after, they recorded the 8th CD "Full Circle".
Today, NEAL & THE VIPERS continue to play shows every week and they finished their 9th CD, "One Drunken Kiss" that was released June 1, 2018, and is available for sale on this website's online store and at all shows.