Obituary: Albert Natale, Native of Boston’s North End

Albert Natale, 96, a native of Bostons North End, died on April 28, 2020 at the Sancta Maria Rehabilitation Center. A resident of Belmont and recently Brightview Assisted Living in Arlington.

Mr. Natale was a renowned and gifted professional musician, showing early promise as a child playing the bugle then trumpet in the St. Anthonys School band. Albert studied with talented musicians and began his professional career by performing in nearby theaters. During his earlier career he traveled throughout the country playing with the Goodman, Dorsey Brothers, Glenn Miller, and Harry James Orchestras. When he returned to Boston, Mr. Natale performed in local venues like Blinstrubs, The Frolic, and Pauls Mall to name a few, playing for entertainers such as Paul Anka, Pat Boone, Johnny Mathis, and Sammy Davis Jr. and comedians such as Henny Youngman, Flip Wilson, and George Carlin.

In the 1960s, he formed Albert Natale and the Tijuana Brass Sounds, and was chosen to play for Mayor Kevin Whites inaugural ball. Another highlight was playing the Boston Garden rally for presidential candidate John F. Kennedy. Mr. Natale served as vice-president of the Boston Musicians Union, meeting such notables as Frank Sinatra to whom he presented an honorary life membership in Local 9-535. This he recalled as one of the greatest moments of his career. Mr. Natale always appreciated his good fortune in life, remembering his roots in the North End.

He was a benefactor for many organizations, in particular St. Leonards Church which was and is so important to the Natale family. His love for the trumpet inspired him to establish an ongoing scholarship at Berklee College of Music. Albert and his band performed for many charitable causes throughout Boston and in more recent years at Belmonts Beech Street Senior Center. He was honored for his talents and his philanthropy, and for these efforts received the prestigious Il Migliori Award from the Pirandello Lyceum. In 2015 he was recognized by the St. Joseph Society for his notable good works and Mayor Walsh declared October 3 Albert Natale Day in Boston.

Albert was born on August 18, 1923 to Zaccaria and Virginia (Moschella) Natale, the youngest of twelve children: Peter, Alfred, Vincent, Henry, Zachary, Ernest, and Lillian Natale; Adeline Richie, Helen Fanciullo, Alice Tortorella, and Mary Viliott. He is survived by his devoted companion of many years, Elaine Buchanan, as well as many loving nieces and nephews. Uncle Albert held a special place in the hearts of his large family, for whom he took special care. Generations grew up knowing his kindness, his twinkling eye, his love for music. He was the consummate gentleman, and a model for all.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Alberts memory to the Belmont Council on Aging, 266 Beech St., Belmont, MA 02478 would be sincerely appreciated. Due to the current restrictions placed on all of us because of COVID-19, all services will be held privately for the immediate family and a celebration of his life will be scheduled when it becomes possible.

7 Replies to “Obituary: Albert Natale, Native of Boston’s North End

  1. Al was a very good friend to me and my family. He supported many organizations in the North End. He loved sharing his musical talents and his music with his friends in the North End. Al and his Big Band Orchestra were part of North End Against Drugs’ North End Family Pride Week for many, many years, as well as many other celebrations, events and activities in the North End. Al supported us even when he could no longer perform with the band! He will surely be missed by everyone in the neighborhood. Rest in peace my friend!!

  2. Al was a tremendous friend to the North End Library and always graciously accepted any time he was asked for an appearance. He also generously but quietly donated to the library as long as we fed his band!
    He was a lovely man.

    1. Al always willingly performed for our Christmas Open House and always was a hit. He was a great gentleman and one I personally will miss.

  3. Farewell to you my favorite uncle you will be missed by many will never forget all the fun we had through the years may you rest in peace you will always be remembered

  4. Uncle Albert. Living in Florida I was not able to visit as I did in past years But oh we talked many times so glad. Was just a month ago and when u we’re in Hospital You sounded so good Youre passing is very sad. All my Aunts and uncles we’re very special to me they are so missed as my Dad also Now God has another Angel who will forever be missed. RIPUncle. 💔 Forever niece Joyce.

  5. As a board member of the Friends of the North Library(FONEL), I had the pleasure of working with Al for several years. He was a kind and generous man who helped make our branch library one of the best in the city. Al’s band made the library’s open house an extremely popular event and he donated his pay to the FONEL. His generosity can be seen throughout the library. He donated the security mirrors, paid for the cleaning of the Dante frieze and bought several memorial bricks. I am grateful for having known Al.

  6. Al was a dear friend He was a talented musician and a shrewd businessman. He was very generous and never forgot his North End roots. He will be missed by all

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