Niagara Gazette


March 18, 2013

Charles Paul Chiarenza

HOLLYWOOD, CA — Charles (Charlie) Paul Chiarenza, 82, of Hollywood, CA, died on Thursday, March 14, 2013, at his residence. Born April 13, 1930 in Niagara Falls, NY, he was the son of the late      Matteo and Domenica  "Mamie" Chiarenza who immigrated to the U.S. from Sicily, Italy.

Charlie graduated from Niagara Falls High School and also served in the United States Air Force.

At a young age, Charlie learned to play the guitar, studied under local musicians, and played for various events and at many local music hot spots in Western New York. In the 1950s, Charlie moved to Los Angeles and like his good friend, Tommy Tedesco from Niagara Falls, became a studio musician.

In the 1960s-80s, Charlie recorded, toured and gave national television performances with Julius Wechter and the Baja Marimba Band, and with Burt Bacharach. In addition, Charlie musically performed as a screen extra in many television programs and motion pictures.

From the 1980s and on, Charlie co-owned and operated several restaurants in the Los Angeles area. This included his first Italian restaurant called Pasta Michi's in Sylmar, CA, and a popular Jazz club called Alfonse's Restaurant in Burbank, CA, and Charlie's in Valencia, CA. At these restaurants, many international celebrities (actors, musicians, etc.) dinned, performed and befriended Charlie. Most recently he was host at Miceli's Restaurant in Hollywood, CA.

Regardless of who you were, Charlie showered you with hospitality, kindness, generosity and was well-known for hard work and love and sacrifice for family and friends.  

Charlie is survived by his four children, Cynthia (Von) Vontellrop of Los Angeles, CA, Charles Jr. "Cha" Chiarenza  of Los Angeles, CA, Colleen (Steve) Frandsen of Green Valley, CA, and Cameron (Lei) Chiarenza of Las Vegas, NV; former wife, Claudia Treadway; four grandchildren, Nicole Chiarenza, Kawai Nainoa, Kayla Frandsen and Cody Frandsen; sister, Joan (Joseph) Chiarenza Stalteri of Phoenix, AZ; predeceased sister, M. Grace (Carmen) Previte of Niagara Falls, NY;  several nieces and nephews, Carol Scott, Robert Previte, Esther Thurau, Jeanne Green, Richard Previte and Jennifer Stalteri; and several cousins.

Visitation will be held on Wednesday, March 20, from 5  PM to 9 PM at the Mission Hills Catholic Mortuary, 11160 Stranwood Ave., Mission Hills, CA 91345, (818) 361-7387, where a funeral mass will be held on Thursday, March 21, from 9 AM to 10 AM, followed by interment at 10:30AM at the same location.

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