The product of a Turkish father and a Russian-Polish mother, Neil Sedaka was born in New York and raised in the city's perennially ethnic Brighton Beach neighborhood. After demonstrating a high level of musical aptitude in his second grade choir class, his teachers told his parents of his knack for musical inclination, prompting his mother to purchase an upright piano for her young son. Sedaka learned quickly and soon won a scholarship to the Juilliard School of Music's Preparatory Division for Children. Though Sedaka's mother had dreams of her son becoming a well known, classically trained pianist, he was discovering the new sounds of pop music and composing music that clearly reflected this. Soon, after meting up with other musicians, Sedaka was writing songs that were receiving a good amount of attention from commercial audiences in the late 1950s. Although, Sedaka's fan base started to wain after the British invasion of the 1960s changed the musical landscape. Never one to shy away from a challenge, Sedaka updated his sound and won over a wide swath of fans. It has been decades since Sedaka first emerged with his early songs in the 1950s, but with a characteristic style and wholesome image, Sedaka has managed to remain a figure who's forever affixed to the American pop music scene.