This article relies largely or entirely on a single source. (March 2014)
|Birth name||Joseph Anthony Lala|
|Born||November 3, 1947|
Ybor City, Florida, U.S.
|Died||March 18, 2014 (aged 66)|
Tampa, Florida, U.S.
|Occupation(s)||Drummer, actor, voice actor and percussionist|
|Years active||1966–2014 (musician)|
|Associated acts||Blues Image, Stephen Stills, Manassas, The Byrds, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Neil Young, The Stills-Young Band, The Bee Gees, Whitney Houston, Joe Walsh|
Life and career
Lala was born in Ybor City, Tampa, Florida, to parents from Contessa Entellina (one of the Albanian communities in Sicily). His father was Sicilian, and he left the family when Joe was a child, so he was raised by his mother on her own. Lala's mother, Janie Cacciatore, an avid dancer, took her son to as many shows as she could. Lala spoke fluent Spanish and Italian. He started out playing the drums in several Florida bands, before forming the band Blues Image. He also occasionally sang lead vocals, most notably on the song "Leaving My Troubles Behind". As a drummer and percussionist, he worked with The Byrds, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Manassas, The Stills-Young Band, The Bee Gees, Whitney Houston, Joe Walsh, Andy Gibb and many others. He played the trademark congas that drove the Bee Gees' 1976 US chart-topper You Should Be Dancing, subsequently included on the multi-million selling Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. Lala provided the wide selection of percussive effects on Barbra Streisand's 1980 worldwide No. 1 album Guilty, and contributed to Whitney Houston's eponymous 1985 debut album. Throughout his career, Lala accumulated 32 gold records and 28 platinum records. He played on the movie soundtracks of Saturday Night Fever, Staying Alive, D.C. Cab, Streets of Fire, All the Right Moves, Breathless, Defiance, The Lonely Guy and Airplane!. A severe case of carpal tunnel syndrome ended Lala's career as a percussionist. It kept him from performing full-time, but he continued to record with Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, the acoustic band Firefall, Dan Fogelberg, Dolly Parton, Rod Stewart and many others. Joe Lala was the last in the drummer stool for the handful of concerts given in February 1973 by the disintegrating Byrds.
He made the most of his Italian-American background and his mastery of Spanish, Cuban and Puerto Rican accents with TV roles in Miami Vice, General Hospital, Melrose Place, Seinfeld, Hunter, and Who's the Boss?, and starred in a summer replacement show named Knight & Daye. He portrayed another native of Ybor City, Dr. Ferdie Pacheco, in Ali: An American Hero, and co-starred with Andy Garcia in For Love or Country: The Arturo Sandoval Story. His films included Active Stealth, Sugar Hill, On Deadly Ground, Deep Sleep, Havana (with Robert Redford), Out for Justice, Marked for Death, Eyewitness to Murder, and Born in East L.A., plus many more.
Lala also guest-starred on several animated shows; Batman: The Animated Series, Pinky and the Brain, Quack Pack, The Angry Beavers, The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, Danger Rangers, ChalkZone, Johnny Bravo, Ozzy & Drix, Superman: The Animated Series, The Woody Woodpecker Show (the 1999 version), and many more. Additionally, he voiced Kun Lan in the 2005 video game Killer7.
He had ultimately walked away from the entertainment business in the mid-2000s in order to care for his mother, who had dementia. Lala coached young actors at the Italian Club in his native Ybor City. Joe Lala died suddenly from complications of lung cancer on March 18, 2014, at approximately 7:00 AM, at the age of 66.
|1992||It Came from the Desert||Koolman||Video game|
|1995||Pinky and the Brain||Francois||1 episode|
|1995||What-a-Mess||Additional Voices||3 episodes|
|1997||Demolition University||Carlos Ramos||Direct-to-video|
|1997||The Legend of Calamity Jane||Additional Voices||13 episodes|
|1999||Golgo 13: Queen Bee||Don Roccini, Gomez||Video|
|1999||Our Friend, Martin||Reporter #2, Demonstrator||Direct-to-video|
|1999||Batman Beyond||Spike, Sailboat Captain||1 episode|
|1999||Johnny Bravo||Raoul||1 episode|
|1999||The Brothers Flub||Additional Voices||1 episode|
|1999||An American Tail: The Mystery of the Night Monster||Bootlick||Direct-to-video|
|1999-2002||Hey Arnold||Miller, Cop #1, Cop #2||2 episodes|
|2001||Static Shock||Security Guard||1 episode|
|2001||Time Squad||Leonardo Da Vinci||1 episode|
|2001||Monsters, Inc.||Spike Jones||Direct-to-video|
|2002||Hunchback of Notre Dame II||Guard #1||Direct-to-video|
|2002||Samurai Jack||Passenger #1, Owner, Engineer||1 episode|
|2003||Ozzy and Drix||Hector's Dad||2 episodes|
|2004||Jimmy Neutron: Win, Lose and Kaboom||Sr. Estevez||TV Movie|
|2004-2005||The Batman||Crime Boss 1, Crime Boss 3, Bomb Tech||2 episodes|
|2005||All Grown Up||Enrique, Doctor #1||2 episodes|
|2005||Danger Rangers||Hector Delgado, Joey Clams, Raccoon Dad||1 episode|
|2005||Killer7||Kun Lan||Video game|
|2006||W.I.T.C.H.||Guard #1, Mayor||1 episode|
With Barbra Streisand
- Guilty (Columbia Records, 1980)
With Stephen Stills
- Stills (Columbia Records, 1975)
- Illegal Stills (Columbia Records, 1976)
- Thoroughfare Gap (Columbia Records, 1978)
- Man Alive! (Pryamid Records, 2005)
With Dionne Warwick
- Heartbreaker (Arista Records, 1982)
With David Crosby
- Oh Yes I Can (A&M Records, 1989)
With Joe Walsh
- The Smoker You Drink, the Player You Get (ABC Records, 1973)
With Dan Fogelberg
- Souvenirs (Epic Records, 1974)
- Nether Lands (Epic Records, 1977)
- Twin Sons of Different Mothers (Epic Records, 1978)
- The Innocent Age (Epic Records, 1981)
- Windows and Walls (Epic Records, 1984)
- Exiles (Epic Records, 1987)
With Don Felder
- Airborne (Asylum Records, 1983)
With Bill Wyman
- Monkey Grip (Atlantic Records, 1974)
With Ringo Starr
- Stop and Smell the Roses (RCA Records, 1981)
With Neil Diamond
- Beautiful Noise (Columbia Records, 1976)
With Jackson Browne
- Hold Out (Asylum Records, 1980)
With Kenny Rogers
- Eyes That See in the Dark (RCA Records, 1983)
With Graham Nash
With Neil Young
- Trans (Geffen, 1982)
With Rod Stewart
- A Night on the Town (Warner Bros. Records, 1976)
- Perrone, Pierre (May 7, 2014). "Joe Lala: Sought-after percussionist who switched careers when illness struck to become an actor and voice-over artist". The Independent. Retrieved April 14, 2015.
- Meacham, Andrew (March 19, 2014). "Legendary Tampa percussionist Joe Lala dies at 66". Retrieved April 15, 2015.
- Jeff Giles (March 19, 2014). "Drummer Joe Lala Dead at 66". Ultimate Classic Rock. Retrieved April 15, 2015.
- "Drummer Lala, who teamed with a generation of rock stars, dead at 66". Archived from the original on 2014-03-19. Retrieved 2014-03-19.