The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

No Beer In Heaven, But the Polka King Is There Now

By Julene McCoy in Arts & Entertainment on Aug 22, 2006 5:14PM

2006_08_polkaking.jpgLast week the Polka King, Walter "Li'l Wally" Jagiello, passed away in Miami. Li'l Wally is known for reviving the true sounds of polka with his slower tempo reminiscent of the Eastern European sound. He was the first musician inducted into Chicago's Polka Hall of Fame and his album Polish Feelings was nominated for a Grammy in 1985.

He co-wrote the song "Let's Go, Go-Go White Sox" which was revived during last year's World Series run. Jagiello often said that the highlight of his career was playing for Pope John Paul II, which is no small honor.

On Wednesday, join Polkaman Jack Baciewski for a heartfelt tribute to Lil' Wally on his
pre-recorded edition of POLKA JAMBOREE airing from 12 - 2 p.m. For a great read on Li'l Wally's life written in 1999, check out this from the Miami New Times.

Jagiello's last request was to have his body brought back to Chicago and a service will be held at Pietrynka Funeral Home on Saturday for his fans to pay their respects to the man whose influence has been likened to Charlie Parker and Muddy Waters.