Saturday, February 07, 2009

Joe Livoti

Today, we look at the talented violin concertmaster of the Welk show, Joe Livoti.

Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on September 24, 1912; he first took up playing the violin after attending a musical recital with his parents where he heard the legendary violinst Mischa Elman perform. At the age of twelve, his talents earned him a scholarship to study at the Boston Conservatory of Music.

Later, Joe went out to Hollywood, where he worked as first violinist for the NBC orchestra, and later with the Warner Brothers staff orchestra. He also worked with notable musical directors such as Gordon Jenkins and singers such as Frank Sinatra.

He joined Lawrence Welk and his music makers in 1962, and as first violinst there....his skills and fame as a concertmaster grew....especially when it came to those great instrumental medleys conducted by George Cates.

One of his more popular numbers is "Wild Dog", in which he performed along with Neil Levang at guitar....a great blend of country and classic blending together.

Joe and his wife Erma, were the parents of two of them, daughter Sylvia guested many times on the show in the early 1960s as a singer.

He passed away in 1998, but his legacy lives on with the Welk Show. There's a new generation of musicians who want to play the violin so beautifully, look no further than the recordings made by Joe Livoti!



R. Lieb-Warmsworth said...

I am a longtime viewer of the Lawrence Welk Show on PBS. Having lost my own father when I was 3, I wished even when I was well in my adult years that Joe would be my father.
I hope that he was indeed as nice and sensitive a fellow - with some regret that he never made it as a concert soloist - as he appears to be on TV.
R. Lieb-Warmsworth, P. O. Box 179, Ramea, Newfoundland A0N 2J0exePriv

Anonymous said...

I dated his son Bob. Any news on him? I hope he's doing well.
Lynne - formerly from L.A.

Anonymous said...

Hi Lynne. My mom also dated Bob when I was growing up. One of the nicest people I've ever known. I hear he's doing great. :)