Hall of Fame – 2020
Casey Siewierski (1921-1995) was born in Chicago, Illinois on February 25, 1921. At the age of seven, he began concertina lessons whenever he had money. At the age of eleven, Casey played his first wedding, along with his father and brothers, Eddie and John. When Casey’s father retired, the “Siewierski Brothers” continued. The Siewierski Brothers proved to be very versatile, each of them switching instruments during a performance. During the Depression Era, they started performing polka music on Division Street in Chicago, which later became known as “Polish Broadway”.
At the age of 21, Casey married his childhood sweetheart and was drafted into the United States Air Force. After Casey was discharged from the service, he started searching out musicians in order to form a group of his own. Li’l Wally asked Casey to join him instead, so he did. That’s when Li’l Wally and The Harmony Boys came into existence.
Although Casey’s career with Lil Wally was successful, in 1948 Casey had a dream to start his own band and he did. They recorded many of his distinctive style originals. His band traveled across the country and appeared on TV and radio shows across the nation.
He composed over 700 songs and recorded on many labels, including Balkan Records, Ridgemoor, Jay-Jay, Rola, Bel-Aire, and Chicago Polka Records. Casey gave his music and lyrics to other bands and guided many young musicians in the polka field.
Casey was inducted into the International Polka Association Polka Music Hall of Fame in 1981. He passed away on December 26, 1995 at the age of 74.