Michigan Accordion Society

Honorary Member

Mr. Ray Battani
April 28, 1928 - March 25, 2014

Honored by MAS on November 3, 2002

Ray Battani received his first button accordion at the age of five and played Jingle Bells for his kindergarten class and that started it all.

Ray has perfect pitch, which made his advancement on the accordion go at a rapid pace. As a youth, Ray was a winner on the Horace Heidt Show, was on staff at WJR Radio in Detroit, and logged in over 200 hours of musical entertainment for the USO "SERVICE SERENADE."

Ray was a music major at Cass Tech High School in Detroit and then went on to Wayne State University to further his musical studies playing baritone horn and piano.

Ray was too young for World War II service but was one of the first draftees called in for Korean War duty and after basic training, was transferred to the 330th Army Band at Fort Mc Coy, Wisconsin, where he was made Band Director. Ray’s Army Band would meet every year.

After two years of Service, it was back to Detroit and many years of accordion work with his "GOTHAM TRIO" playing all the top supper clubs in the area and also recording with his other group "THE SUNSETTERS."

Ray also taught Accordion for the Gus Zoppi Accordion Center.Ray has accompanied many great singers in the Detriot Area.

Ray was member in good standing of The Detroit Federation of Musicians Union for over 50 years. He could play most songs in any key required, and you could find Ray performing with his dance combo or with strolling violins or accompanying singers on the many requests he received for his musical talents.

Ray was gifted with perfect pitch. He could hear a song and then play it. If a train went by he could tell you what key the sound of the train whistle was or what key the sound of an automobile horn was honking in. Ray was simply an amazing musician!