Anthony "Tony" Costa, of Scranton, died unexpectedly on Saturday, June 14, 2014, at Geisinger Community Medical Center. Tony was a musical icon in Scranton. He started his professional music career at the age of 15 in radio on WCDL Carbondale with his sisters as the Costa Trio. He went on to gain national success with the musical group he formed, the Town Pipers. His musical group was awarded the Key to the City of Scranton.
The Town Pipers performed in Las Vegas and California for audiences that included Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. The Town Pipers opened for Louis Prima, and were regulars on the Tonight Show with Steve Allan and the Steve Allan Show with the Smothers Brothers and Jim Nabors. Tony was befriended by show business legends, including Don Rickles, Trini Lopez, Ann Margret, Joey Bishop, Kenny Rogers, Stevie Nicks and Jason Miller.
Tony was a consummate pianist, composer, guitarist and vocalist. His greatest gift was for musical arrangement. Tony's musical arrangements were filled with emotion and complexity. He was fluent in all musical styles, but loved jazz the best. He performed on national television shows, and in the country's finest venues, such as the Oscars, the Playboy Mansion and La Costa Country Club. Tony Costa was a musician's musician.
Finally returning to Scranton, Tony played in nightclubs, restaurants and special occasions in and around the Scranton area. His music touched our souls, and his humor touched our hearts. He was a friend to all, and his unsurpassed talent will be greatly missed.
Tony was the son of the late Helen and Anthony "Pete" Costa, and is survived by his sister, Rose and her husband, Salvatore LaBella, San Diego; his sister and caretaker, Paulette Karwoski, Scranton; Linda Costa, caregiver and former wife, Scranton; five children, Adriano and Angelo Costa, Los Angeles; Chrissy Kassebaum, New Jersey; Toby Costa, Poconos; and Chad Costa, Texas; and stepsons, Jamie and Sean Toole, Scranton. He is also survived by former wives, Joan Costa, Old Forge; and Sandra Costa, Los Angeles; seven grandchildren, one niece and three nephews. He is loved by all.
The family would like to thank Dr. Steven Brunetti and the staff at Geisinger Community Medical Center Emergency Department for the kind and compassionate care they provided for Tony and his family.
The funeral will be conducted Friday from the Solfanelli-Fiorillo Funeral Home Inc., 1030 N. Main Ave., Scranton, with Mass of Christian Burial at 9:30 a.m. in St. Lucy's Church, 949 Scranton St., Scranton. Interment, Cathedral Cemetery.
Friends may call Thursday from 4 to 8 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Tony Costa Memorial Fund in care of 1510 Wood St., Scranton, PA 18508.
Please visit www.solfanellifiorillofuneralhome.com for information, directions or to send an online condolence.
Solfanelli-Fiorillo Funeral Home
1030 N Main Ave Scranton, PA 18508
Published in Scranton Times on June 17, 2014