Arts & Entertainment

Singer Howard Crosby (yep, related to Bing) plans Tri-City concert

Entrepreneur Howard Crosby is on the board of many corporations around the globe, has consulting offices in New York City and London, but it's his love of music that keeps him grounded.

And despite the fact his uncle is the iconic crooner of all time -- Bing Crosby -- the 54-year-old Walla Walla man didn't even think he could sing until he hit his 20s.

"My dad was Uncle Bing's older brother," he said in a phone interview this week. "Even though I spent a lot of time with my uncle I never really thought about singing myself.

"My parents wanted me to play the piano, and though I never had any formal training as a singer, I discovered I had a natural ability while I was in college."

Crosby, who has lived in Walla Walla since 1999, performs a benefit concert Jan. 30 at the Battelle Auditorium in Richland. Admission is free but donations are welcome.

His closeness to his uncle evolved more from their shared love of golf and not singing music.

"I was a pretty good golfer and earned a golf scholarship to the University of Idaho," Crosby said. "And as you probably know, Uncle Bing was an incredible golfer himself. He even invited me to play in the Bing Crosby National Pro-Am (now called the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am) four times."

But Howard Crosby's golf clubs are usually set aside whenever he travels for music.

The Tri-City concert includes some of the tunes Bing Crosby is famous for, along with other American songbook favorites. Also performing with Crosby will be pianist Randy Kaping and harpist Gwen Lyons.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Ferguson Gonzaga Crosby Memorial Educational fund and the Rosie Armijo Scholarship fund for Tri-Cities Prep High School in Pasco.

To reserve a seat for the Pocket Full of Dreams concert, call Keri at 546-2465.

w Dori O'Neal: 582-1514;