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Cortese, Dominic (16th October 1921-9th August 2001)

He was an accordion player born in New York City who began playing young but was drafted into the military in WWII.

He began concentrating on his musical career when he came out of service and became a session musician through membership of Musicians’ Union Local 802.  Possibly the most sought after accordionist in New York’s recording studios, he accompanied artists for over fifty years in every genre of music and they included Bob Dylan, Phil Bodner , Raymond Scott, Billy Joel on around six of his albums, Elvis Presley, Loudon Wainwright, Art Garfunkel, John Pizzarelli, Spike Jones, Al Caiola, Dick Hyman and Uri Caine.

Appearing on literally thousands of recordings he can be heard on his own Accordion Party, Accordion Italy Summertime in Venice and Accordion Continental among others and also features on albums that include Viva Las Vegas by Elvis Presley , Desire by Bob Dylan , Whispers and Promises by Earl Klugh, Forever: An Anthology, Bread and Roses and Judith by Judy Collins, The Stranger, My Lives, Storm Front, Innocent Man, Nylon Curtain and Complete Hits Collection by Billy Joel, Coconut Telegraph by Jimmy Buffett , All American Alien Boy by Ian Hunter, Mamaloshen by Mandy Patinkin, Wind Beneath My Wings by James Galway, Carry It On by Peter, Paul and Mary, Naturally by John Pizzarelli, Sweetest Days by Vanessa Williams and Sings Cole Porter by Dionne Warwick.

Taking time to step into the world of the silver screen he has been seen in movies such as The Cradle Will Rock and Moonstruck and played on the soundtracks for Broadway Danny Rose, Everyone Says I Love You, Beauty and the Beast and Happiness.

He died in Quogue, New York, in 2001 aged 79 at a time he was due to appear with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and Doc Severinsen.