Perry ComoBig Band | 2006
Pierino Ronald “Perry” Como, born in 1912 in Pennsylvania, was an Italian-American crooner who set the standard for smooth vocal stylings. Throughout a career spanning more than half a century, he recorded exclusively for the RCA Victor label after signing with them in 1943. He sold millions of records for RCA, beginning with his 1945 hit version of the pop ballad “’Til the End of Time,” based on Chopin’s “Polonaise in A-Flat.” Como was the first artist to produce 10 records that sold more than one million copies. He also pioneered a weekly musical variety television show, The Perry Como Show (also known as The Chesterfield Supper Club and The Kraft Music Hall), from 1948 to 1963 on two different networks and received an Emmy Award. In 1958, he was the first recipient of the Grammy Award for Best Male Vocalist for his hit “Catch a Falling Star.” Como, who considered Long Island his home after settling there in the 1940s, passed away in 2001. To this day, a generation of Port Washington residents still remembers the gentle man who always had a smile for them during weekly church services throughout the 1960s and 1970s.