|JO ANN CASTLE|
|She's known as the Queen of the Ragtime Piano and during her ten years on the Lawrence Welk Show, Jo Ann Castle has brought life and fun to television sets across America....and her fans, especially the men, are always asking for encore after encore!
And even today, her talents and flair for showbiz continues to excite folks from coast to coast.
Born Jo Ann Zeiring in Bakersfield, California on September 3, 1940; she made her first professional appearance as a peformer at age three by singing and dancing. When she was eight, she was playing piano at banquets and other functions and when she turned ten, began taking accordian lessons in which by that time her family had moved to Ventura, California.
It was in Ventura where Jo Ann first met the Maestro, and that increased her passion for the accordian.,plus took Castle as her last name from Castle Accordians.
She and her family relocated to Los Angeles to further her musical training, where at age fifteen was an accordianist-singer on Tex Williams' network radio show. Her television debut came at age seventeen when she played both the piano and the squeezebox on the "Ina Ray Hutton Show" and later performed on Arthur Godfrey's "Talent Scouts".
When Jo Ann made her first guest appearance on the Lawrence Welk Show in 1958, she already had her own act, the Castle Quartet which consisted of Jo Ann and three men that performed engagements at the Fremont Hotel in Las Vegas and at the Dunes Hotel. That was followed by more guest appearances on the Welk show until 1959, on her birthday was invited to be a regular cast member.
Jo Ann was a mainstay on the Welk Show until 1969, she played her honky tonk piano, did accordian duets with Myron Floren, and appeared in numerous comedic novelty skits with Larry Hooper, Bob Lido and Jack Imel. She also recorded and released several solo albums featuring her work on the piano.
Today, Jo Ann is the mother of two grown children, Joanie and Billy.....and continues to entertain a new generation of fans, either at the Welk Resort in Branson or anywhere across the country.
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