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A  Tribute  To  My  Brother

Donald  Vasta

June  10th,  1946  -  September 6th,  2007

Donald Vasta

My brother Donald was a talented musician who played the drums,  guitar, and keyboards.  Along with these talents he was a singer,  songwriter, arranger,  and performed as a "Show Drummer".

He was the original drummer of   "The Innocents Band",  with Herb Alpert,  as the manager.  He was a drummer for the The Dick Grove Big Band  and was a graduate of the Dick Grove School Of Music.

Donald also served in the Armed Forces performing with the   "Strategic Air Command Band"  USAF  ( March Air Force Base - four years as an instrumentalist, singer and announcer )  and performed at USO Shows with Bob Hope.  Donald was awarded the Gold Medal by President Richard Nixon.


Our Dad (Carlos Vasta),  Don, and me

At the age of five, Donald made his first appearance on the "Live Like A Millionare" TV show that was broadcast from New York City in 1951.

Our Mom (Betty Hathaway) Dancing On Skates

He appeared on the show with our mother, Betty Hathaway, who performed in variety shows doing dance routines and tap dancing on roller skates.  She won 1st prize on the show and received the interest on a million dollars.  Donald sang  "I'm Looking Over A Four Leaf Clover".

More pictures at  About  Carl  Vasta


In 1953, our parents moved to La Crescenta,  California.  During high school,  I started a 13 piece band.  It was hard to so I finally settled on a four piece group that included my brother on drums.  It wasn't long before Donald was attending drum clinics with Philly Joe Jones and performing with the Buddy Rich Big Band.

The Innocents Band

Donald took a job with The Karin Coffee Review at the Show Boat in Las Vegas for a year.  He joined The Innocents Band and was with them until he was drafted and joined the Air Force.

After the service,  Donald worked locally with different rock bands,  then he signed up with the Dick Grove School Of Music.  He worked with professional people,  including Henry Mancini, studying composing and arranging for big band.  He learned to play keyboards and guitar,  and graduated at the top of the class.  He continued to pursue writing music for movies and even did some acting when sickness started taking it's toll.

He is survived by his loving wife Beverly,  his son Donny,  and me.


by Carl Vasta  /  copyright 2007

The Hug

The  morning
brings  the  rain,

My  tears  may
ease  the  pain


My  brother's
gift  to  me,

A  childhood


Your  music
lingers  on

A never
ending  song


Your  spirit
now  is  free

Your  love
remains  with  me

Don & Carl Performing

The Music Of Carl Vasta
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