I have fond memories of Joe Amato

Byram /
| 01 Mar 2021 | 06:32

To the Editor:

Thank you for the article, “Whatever happened to Joe Amato?” in last week’s edition. So sorry to hear of his passing in 2017.

Judy and I first met Joe at Feher’s Country Inn in the late 1970s. Performing, he was so skilled not only vocally but also instrumentally. Very entertaining. He was also very personable and it was easy to have a friendly conversation. I shared my DJ experience in the vinyl record, turntable days with WLR/WLRN while in college as well as my vocal experience in church choir and high school operettas not knowing the commonality of our roots. Joe was an entertainer. I was a party-pooper — a police officer.

We followed Jack Fry and Joe to the Lafayette House occasionally calling ahead to see if Joe was playing that night. One night, Joe asked me to do a duet and, likely to the disappointment of other paying customers, it turned into my solo.

After losing contact for some time, we were traveling from CA to AZ and decided to spend a night in Laughlin, NV. At midnight, it was 110 and we decided to hit a show. We stumbled on Legends in Concert starring Joe Amato as Conway Twitty and Hank Williams Jr. “It can’t be Sussex County’s Joe Amato!” It was. We sat down-front and ordered drinks before the show. Joe came on stage and immediately saw Judy and me, waved and announced that friends from New Jersey were in the audience.

The show was great and we enjoyed a brief visit with “Conway Joe” afterwards. We remember Joe whenever we see “Legends in Concert.” In our book, Joe Amato is a legend.

Eskil S. Danielson