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Joseph "Joe Valino" Paolino, Jr
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Birth: Mar. 9, 1929
Death: Dec. 26, 1996

The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 28, 1996, page D-13:
Joe Valino, 67, a singer from South Philadelphia who recorded several popular songs in the 1950s and performed for years in nightclubs on both coasts, died of a heart attack Thursday at the home of his mother in Southwest Philadelphia. Born Joseph Paolino Jr. on March 9, 1929 he bagan singing at a club in Philadelphia when he was 11. Mr. Valino, who once sang with the Woody Herman and the Benny Goodman Bands, enjoyed his best years in the 1950s, when he recorded "Garden of Eden" - his most popular song - "Tenderly" and "MacArthur Park." He also sang the title song in the John Wayne movie Legend of the Lost. Though he never took music lessons, he played several instruments, including piano, guitar and drums. In Philadelphia, Mr. Valino was noted for having discovered a song that Frank Sinatra made popular. Mr. Valino was the first to record "Learning the Blues," by Philadelphia area composer Vicki Silver. Unfortunately, it was Sinatra's version, released a short time after Mr. Valino's, that became a big hit. Mr. Valino was in Hollywood in the 1960s and 1970s, returning to the Philadelphia area for a heart bypass operation in 1977. Through the next several years, he had several heart attacks and a stroke, and underwent a second bypass operation. He is survived by his son, Joe Paolino 3d; his mother, Mary Dadario Paolino; a brother; a sister; and a dear friend, Elaine Faye Frening. A Funeral Mass will be offered at 11 a.m. Tuesday at St. Clement's Church, 71st Street and Woodland Avenue 9:30 and 11 a.m. Entombment will be in St. Matthew's Mausoleum in Conshohockon. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to the church.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mr. Valino, who once sang with the Woody Herman and the Benny Goodman Bands, enjoyed his best years in the 1950s, when he recorded ``Garden of Eden'' - his most popular song - ``Tenderly'' and ``MacArthur Park.'' He also sang the title song in the John Wayne movie Legend of the Lost.

Though he never took music lessons, he played several instruments, including piano, guitar and drums.

In Philadelphia, Mr. Valino was noted for having discovered a song that Frank Sinatra made popular. Mr. Valino was the first to record ``Learning the Blues,'' by Philadelphia area composer Vicki Silver. Unfortunately, it was Sinatra's version, released a short time after Mr. Valino's, that became a big hit.

Mr. Valino was in Hollywood in the 1960s and 1970s, returning to the Philadelphia area for a heart bypass operation in 1977. Through the next several years, he had several heart attacks and a stroke, and underwent a second bypass operation.

He is survived by his son, Joe Paolino 3d; his mother, Mary Dadario Paolino; a brother; a sister; and a dear friend, Elaine Faye Frening.

A Funeral Mass will be offered at 11 a.m. Tuesday at St. Clement's Church, 71st Street and Woodland Avenue, where friends may call between 9:30 and 11 a.m. Entombment will be in St. Matthew's Mausoleum in Conshohocken.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to the church.

Credit: Andy Wallace, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Philadelphia Daily News January 16, 1998, page F-17:
...At the age of 11, Valino (whose real name was John Joseph Paolino) began singing and performing in clubs here. His mature tenor voice and knack for playing an assortment of instruments made him a noteworthy local prodigy. After a brief stint as a professional boxer, Valino got his first major break in 1955 when his song "Learnin' the Blues" was released and began its climb up the charts. But his friends took the record to Frank Sinatra, and Sinatra, though struggling in his own career at the time, brought the cover to the top of the billboard charts for the first No. 1 hit of his career, explained radio personality Jerry Blavat. "Joe was a very talanted man. Philadelphians loved him, because he was a local guy. He could've been a superstar with 'Learnin' the Blues.' In fact, Vicki Silver had written the song for Joe, but when Sinatra heard Joe's voice, which sounded so similar to his own, he did the cover and Frank had a reputation; Joe couldn't compete with that," Blavat said. Determined to stick with his singing career, Valino released another hit song, "Garden of Eden," in late 1956, and again appeared to be on the threshold of stardom. But Valino was again undermined by controversy. While "Garden of Eden" was on the rise (it would climb to No. 12 at its peak), he was arrested and charged with arranging an illegal abortion for a girlfriend. Valino pleaded not guilty, but he was convicted on all counts and in 1957 he received a 17-year probation. All of his records were pulled off store shelves and his music was banned from radio play. "It was really a shame," said Pat Delsey, owner of WSSJ and a long-time friend of Valino's. "He was a nice person and a good friend. He just had such a run of bad luck... His talent was never fully realized." He continued to sing, hoping to revive his career, but in 1977 he suffered a major heart attack. He then had a stroke, and lost his abilities to walk and sing. But he taught himself to do these things again, and remained a constant lounge act here for the remainder of his life. After six more strokes and two more heart attacks, Valino died in December 1996, at age 67. At the time of his death, he had been overseeing the release of a personal greatest hits album. Despite years of obscurity, Valino's recordings are now preserved for anyone who wants to hear the music he once described as "close enough for jazz, but more or less an innovating style of classical, pop-culture fusion."

Timeless CD liner notes:
...The singing career of Joe Valino began at age 11 with a man size guitar and an unusally mature tenor voice. At the age of 16 Joe was playing piano for the late Sarah Vaughn at the 500 Club while Frank Sinatra was appearing in the room beside him. By the age of 18 he was already performing with big bands such as Woody Herman and Tommy Dorsey and his orchestra. In his early twenties, Joe began his recording career with Gold Star Records. Along with some of his closest friends he created a world with his singing. Joe's recording of Learnin' the Blues was rising up the Billboard charts, and his career was about to skyrocket. The song was well on its way to becoming a hit for Joe, until one of his friends forwarded Learnin' the Blues to Frank Sinatra, who covered it and released it within seven days, taking it to #1. Joe believed you couldn't be just a good singer, you had to be great. Joe was great. So great, that he eventually signed to the RCA VIK organization and United Artists where he recorded the theme song for the John Wayne / Sophia Loren hit movie "Legend of the Lost." Again, as fate had it laid out for him, Joe achieved another hit record with "The Garden of Eden." This went to number one, selling over 700,000 copies in the first few weeks after it's release. Along the way, he received the usual acting offers that popular young singers were receiving, but remarkably enough, he turned them down. He had an unwavering desire to fulfill his goal - to be a great singer. During the 70s, while Joe Valino lived in Hollywood, the many regulars who would come to see him perform included Sammy Davis Jr., Natalie Cole, Tony Bennett, Joe Cocker, Dean Martin, and of course Frank Sinatra. You must know your competition, and his competition knew him well. At the height of his career, Joe proclaimed "Music whether classical, jazz, or rock and roll, can be a magnificent thing. I have no ax to grind for a particular style or special interest in any one field. In the end, only the public will judge what music will last and what music will fall by the wayside." Joe Valino's music will not fall by the wayside. As a matter of fact, Joe's music has been one of the best kept secrets of the last 40 years. Now his music can be heard and his story can be told. Joe's world was created around the love, compassion, respect and peacefulness found within the art of music, company of his dear friends and strength of his family. For the young and old who have never had the pleasure of seeing or hearing Joe Valino, be prepared, for this is only the beginning. The story of Joe's spectacular rise to the top, the battles he fought throughout his career and of his determination to be not just a good singer, but a GREAT one, are not only remarkable, they will be forever "TIMELESS." 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  Joseph Paolino (1896 - 1984)
  Mary Paolino (1904 - 2000)
 
 Sibling:
   Joseph Paolino (1929 - 1996)
  Nicholas M. Paolino (1930 - 1983)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Note: Famous South Philly Singer AKA Joseph Valino
 
Burial:
Saint Matthews Cemetery
Conshohocken
Montgomery County
Pennsylvania, USA
 
Created by: Researcher
Record added: Aug 11, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 28949332
Joseph Joe Valino Paolino, Jr
Added by: Researcher
 
Joseph Joe Valino Paolino, Jr
Added by: Researcher
 
Joseph Joe Valino Paolino, Jr
Added by: Chotsie Kelly
 
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- Cinnamon Girl
 Added: Jul. 29, 2014

- Joyce
 Added: Jul. 2, 2014
What a good looking young man.
-Anonymous
 Added: May. 30, 2014
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