The first member of the Sochin family to come to Amsterdam was Lewis Sochin, who settled here after migrating from Russia in 1895. He opened a fabric dyeing business on Guy Parke Avenue (then known as Spring Street) and a few years later in 1908, he added an apparel store. He had two sons, Albert and Joseph. Both would work at the clothing store with him. In 1949, the Sochin store was moved to Market Street. Both of the Sochin grandson’s Lenny and Albert would help out in the store after school and on weekends. Lenny would end up taking over the store one day while Albert had another career in mind.
Today’s Amsterdam Birthday celebrant Albert Sochin was born on March 21, 1927 the son of Joseph and Violet DaCosta Sochin. From a very early age it was evident that this young man had a magnificent singing voice. He sang in the St. Ann’s Episcopal Church Youth Choir as a boy and was often a featured soloist at area weddings, funerals and events. When he became a student at Wilbur Lynch High School he sang in the school’s choral groups and drama club productions.
He then joined the Navy at the tail end of WWII and when he was discharged, he attended the Julliard School of Music in New York City. He wanted to become an Opera singer. Always believing he was a baritone, he participated in a 1950 Metropolitan Opera “Audition of the Air” competition…
DaCosta shares his March 21 birthday with this former Amsterdam Assemblyman.