“Weird Al” Yankovic

Yankovic in 2011, Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com

Birth Name: Alfred Matthew Yankovic

Place of Birth: Downey, Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: October 23, 1959

*father – Slovenian, Croatian
*maternal grandfather – Italian
*maternal grandmother – English, small amounts of Irish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, and more distant Dutch, Welsh, and Scottish

“Weird Al” Yankovic is an American parodist, satirist, singer, songwriter, record producer, actor, music video director, film producer, and author.

He is the son of Mary Elizabeth (Vivalda) and Nick Louis Yankovic. His father was of Slovenian and Croatian descent. His maternal grandfather was Italian, and his maternal grandmother had English, and small amounts of Irish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, and more distant Dutch, Welsh, and Scottish, ancestry.

“Weird Al” is married to Suzanne Krajewski, with whom he has a daughter.

“Weird Al” is not related to accordion player and polka musician Frankie Yankovic.

“Weird Al”‘s paternal grandfather was named Matthew/Mattan Yankovic/Yankovich (the son of Steve Yankovich and Ann). Matthew was from Črnomelj, Slovenia.

“Weird Al”‘s paternal grandmother was named Mary A. Braj/Bray. Mary was an ethnic Croatian, and was born in Požega-Slavonia.

“Weird Al”‘s maternal grandfather was named John Battista Alfredo “Alfred” Vivalda. John was from Turin, Piedmont, Italy.

“Weird Al”‘s maternal grandmother was Fairy Mae Kidwell (the daughter of Thomas Elden Kidwell and Elizabeth Dobbs). Fairy was born in Kentucky; her family had lived in the United States for many generations, and had English ancestry. Thomas was the son of Louis Palestine Kidwell and Elvina Baker. Elizabeth was the daughter of Jeremiah Dobbs and Eliza Mobley.

Sources: Genealogies of “Weird Al” Yankovic – http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com

“Weird Al”‘s father on the 1920 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org
“Weird Al”‘s father on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

Genealogies of “Weird Al”‘smaternal grandmother, Fairy Mae Kidwell – http://records.ancestry.com


Curious about ethnicity

30 Responses

  1. madman says:

    Matthew Yankovic was Slovenian.
    Mary Bray was Croatian.

  2. madman says:

    Mary Bray/Braj was born in Croatia. Of course, she could still be of Serbian descent though. Matthew was the son of Steve Yankovich and Ann. John was born in Italy. Fairy Mae Kidwell’s great-great-grandfather, Smith Foote, was Irish. Her great-great-great-grandmother was Rachel Van Winkle, who was most likely of Dutch descent. There are some other ethnicities in there as well.

    *Serbian, Croatian (father)
    *Italian (maternal grandfather)
    *English, small amounts of Irish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, and more distant Dutch, Welsh, and Scottish (maternal grandmother)

    Genealogy of “Wierd Al” Yankovic – http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=PED&db=dowfam3&id=I604324

    Another genealogy of Al’s maternal grandmother, Fairy Mae Kidwell – https://familysearch.org/tree/#view=ancestor&section=details&person=9HW8-K9G&parents=KJWF-ZX9_KJWF-ZFV

    • follers says:

      Not to start another Malarkey here, but do we know that Yankovic’s grandmother was an ethnic Croatian?

      • madman says:

        Definitely not, there were many Serbians living in modern day Croatia at the time.

      • bablah says:

        I don’t know of a Serbian or Croatian last name Braj, I do know however of a Serbian last name Brajović.
        Book Мојдеж – прилози за хронику села и родослове mentions Brajović family of Mojdež, Montenegro, and it mentions them as being a part of Bjelopavlovići clan that came to Herceg Novi from Konavle. It also says that the family left in Konavle (in Croatia) converted to Roman Catholicism.
        To conclude, yeah, I don’t know, maybe, maybe not.

      • madman says:

        On all censuses, Matthew Yankovic and Mary A. Bray are both listed as being born in Yugoslavia, except for the 1930 census, where Mary is listed as born in “Yugoslavia Croatia”. However, as you imply she could still have been an ethnic Serbian.

  3. Alina says:

    I don’t know why his hair is such a big deal. It is not super uncommon for Serbians to have really curly hair like his and Italians can have very curly hair too.

  4. sarahle says:

    I know serbians with curly hair….

  5. midori29 says:

    Its always suspect when whites have spiral curly brown hair, thats and African black trait.

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