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Beatles, Blues And Everything Between

Hicksville resident shares musical talent,

success and passion with community

Music has always been a part of Hicksville resident Ronnie D’Addario’s life. Born and raised in the Theater District of Manhattan, D’Addario grew up surrounded by music, as his father played the saxophone and horns for The Four Seasons and Frank Sinatra and his mother was a talented piano player and singer.

“But on Feb. 9, 1964, everything changed,” said D’Addario. “I saw the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show and that was it. Music became my passion then.”

That summer, his mother bought him his first guitar – and he became obsessed. He started writing and recording songs immediately. He wrote his first song “Please Don’t Make Me Blue” at just 11. This marked the beginning of his long and successful musical career, one in which he crossed paths with many notable names in the entertainment industry.

“The first famous person that I knew pretty well was the director and actor Otto Preminger,” D’Addario reminisced. “My mom worked for him for 25 years and there were always celebrities in and out of the office.”

He met many musicians while playing with Clancy Brothers member Tommy Makem at Makem’s New York City club, Makem’s Irish Pavilion. Among these musicians were Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Bono and Eric Clapton. D’Addario also played with Tommy Makem on PBS Television specials and made an appearance with him on the Rosie O’Donnell Show.

About 10 years ago, D’Addario moved to Hicksville, where he now lives with his wife, Susan Hall, and their two children, Brian, 15, and Michael, 13. D’Addario’s success as a musician and Susan’s history as an actress sparked their son’s involvement in music and acting. Brian has been successful on Broadway, playing roles such as Gavroche in “Les Misérables” and Flounder in “The Little Mermaid.” Michael starred in the feature films “People Like Us” and “Sinister.”

In addition to acting, D’Addario’s sons are heavily passionate for music, showing talent both instrumentally and vocally.

“Their resumes are pretty impressive,” said D’Addario. “My wife and I are very supportive.”

D’Addario now works at Kellenberg Memorial High School in Uniondale, where he has applied his skills as a musician and recording artist for the past decade. The high school releases two musical albums each academic year, and it is D’Addario’s job to guide students musically and lyrically. He then produces recordings of the songs and puts them on the albums.

“[The students] are thrilled with the results,” said D’Addario. “They gain experience and confidence, and they enjoy their first time in a recording studio.”

Although he’s busy raising his family and working at Kellenberg, D’Addario continues to share his music with others. He is a member of a successful local Irish band called The Irish Mist, with which he plays many gigs at various local restaurants and pubs. D’Addario also has three albums that are for sale online and he is currently halfway through writing his fourth album.

And though the times may be a-changing, D’Addario doesn’t seem too fazed.

“I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing – raising my children, writing songs and playing gigs,” he said.

News

Jaclynn Demas always loved film and television. She dreamed of having a hand in its creative process. and wanted to shape the moving image. The East Williston resident’s obsession paid off after taking home a Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Award for Outstanding Pre-School Children’s Animated Program last month as producer of PBS KIDS’ Peg + Cat.

“I’ve loved TV and was a movie buff since I was a little kid,” she said. “All I’ve ever wanted to do was make films. I was just upset at how things were made. When I got older, I took a lot of courses in TV and video production.”

Get out your needle and thread, glue gun, beads, and paint. Creative Cups, the popular, life-affirming fund raising event of the Adelphi NY Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline & Support Program, is back. This is the fourth time that Creative Cups has happened on Long Island and allows artists, breast cancer survivors, their friends, family members and others to use originality and creativity to transform ordinary bras into works of art. Creative Cups celebrates the lives of those living with breast cancer and those we have lost to this terrible disease. All are invited to participate by creating an “art bra” or becoming a sponsor.

Fran Mulholland from Hicksville along with her friend Emilia Goncalves decorated a bra for last year’s Creative Cups. Their bra was themed “Celebrating Another Birthday.”


Sports

Hicksville High School senior Kyle Carroll recently participated in the prestigious Blue Grey Super Combine in Canton OH. Over 7,000 high school football players are invited to combines sponsored by Blue Grey Football throughout the country. Carroll was recognized for his overall scores and abilities during the one on one drills and was honored to have been chosen as one of 140 athletes invited to the Super Combine at the Football Hall of Fame. From there, a select few will be invited to play in the Blue Grey All-America Bowls in December in Texas and in January in Florida.  

The Super Combine in Canton took place on Fawcett Field at the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The combine featured some of the top football prospects from around the country. Carroll fit seamlessly into the drills as he displayed impressive work with fast feet and hip turns as well as skilled ball handling ability.

Madeline Huffman, a fourth grade student at Our Lady of Mercy School in Hicksville, recently became the New York State Free Throw Champion in the Knights of Columbus Free Throw Competition, 9 Year Old Girls Division at the United States Military Academy, West Point.

Huffman’s journey to the state championship began at her home parish, Our Lady of Mercy Roman Catholic Church in January. The local qualifier was sponsored by the Knights of Columbus Joseph F. Lamb Council #5723. Boys and girls ages 9 through 14 competed, each receiving three warm up shots and 15 free throw attempts.


Calendar

Soccer For A Cause

August 2

Blood Drive

August 2

Holy Family Church Fair

August 13-16



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com