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Al Viola



* Born 16 June 1919, Brooklyn, New York
* Died 21 February 2007, Studio City, California

Al ViolaAl Viola studied guitar and followed jazz guitarists Charlie Christian and Oscar Moore before he was drafted in 1941. The Army placed him in a trio with a pianist and bassist, billed as “The Three Sergeants.” Page Cavanaugh replaced the original pianist and after discharge, the trio won a recording contract with RCA under his name. Viola settled in the LA area and worked as a studio musician and in an occasional trio with Bobby Troup and Lloyd Pratt. He played with Ray Anthony, Harry James, and Nelson Riddle, and backed Julie London and Frank Sinatra on several tours. Viola was the guitarist in the sextet that accompanied Frank Sinatra on his legendary 1962 tour. His greatest notoriety as a studio musician came from his mandolin work on Nino Rota’s great score for The Godfather.

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