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Frankie Valli: The Surprising Things You Might Not Know

Frankie Valli (born Francesco Stephen Castelluccio; May 3, 1934) is an American singer, known as the frontman of The Four Seasons beginning in 1960. He is known for his unusually powerful falsetto voice.

Valli scored 29 Top 40 hits with The Four Seasons, one Top 40 hit under The Four Seasons alias The Wonder Who?, and nine Top 40 hits as a solo artist. As a member of The Four Seasons, Valli’s number-one hits included:

“Sherry” (1962)


“Sherry”

Sherry, Sherry baby
Sherry, Sherry babySherry baby (sherry baby) baby (Sherry baby)
Sherry can you come out tonight?
(Come, come, come out tonight)
Sherry baby (Sherry baby)
Sherry can you come out tonight?(Why don’t you come out, come out)
Come out to my twist party
(Come out) Where the bright lights shine
(Come out) We’ll dance the night away
I’m gonna make you mineSherry baby (Sherry baby)
Sherry can you come out tonight
(Come come, come out tonight)
(Come come, come out tonight)
You’d better ask your mama (Sherry baby)
Tell her everything is alright(Why don’t you come out, come out)
With your red dress on
(Come out) Mmm. you look so fine
(Ccome out) Move it nice and easy
Girl, you make me lose my mindSherry baby (sherry baby) baby (Sherry baby)
Sherry can you come out tonight?
(Come, come, come out tonight)
(Come, come, come out tonight)Sherry, Sherry baby
(Come, come, come out tonight)
Sherry, Sherry baby
(Come, come, come out tonight)
Sherry

“Big Girls Don’t Cry” (1962)


“Big Girls Don’t Cry”

Big girls don’t cry
Big girls don’t cryBig girls don’t cry
(They don’t cry)
Big girls don’t cry
(Who said they don’t cry?)My girl said goodbye
(My oh my)
My girl didn’t cry
(I wonder why?)(Silly boy) Told my girl we had to break up
(Silly boy) Hoped that she would call my bluff
(Silly boy) When she said to my surprise
“Big girls don’t cry”Big girls don’t cry
(They don’t cry)
Big girls don’t cry
(Who said they don’t cry?)(Maybe) I was cruel
(I was cruel)
Baby, I’m a fool
(I’m such a fool)(Silly girl) Shame on you, your mama said
(Silly girl) Shame on you, you’re cryin’ in bed
(Silly girl) Shame on you, you told a lie
Big girls do cry

Big girls don’t cry
(They don’t cry)
Big girls don’t cry
(That’s just an alibi)

Big girls don’t cry
Big girls don’t cry
Big girls don’t cry
Big girls don’t cry
Big girls don’t cry

“Walk Like a Man” (1963)

“Walk Like A Man”

Ooo-Wee-Ooooooh-Wa
(Walk, walk, walk, walk)
Ooo-Wee-Ooooooh
Walk like a manOh, how you tried
To cut me down to size
By telling dirty lies to my friends
But my own father
Said give her up, don’t bother
The world isn’t coming to an endHe said walk like a man
Talk like a man
Walk like a man my son
No woman’s worth
Crawling on the earth
So walk like a man my sonOoo-Wee-Ooooooh-Wa
(Walk, walk, walk, walk)
Ooo-Wee-Ooooooh-WaFine eyed baby
I don’t mean maybe
We’re gonna get along somehow
Soon you’ll be crying
On ‘count of all you’re lying
Oh yeah, just look who’s laughing nowI’m gonna walk like a man
Fast as I can
Walk like a man from you
I’ll tell the world
Forget about it girl
And walk like a man from youOoo-Wee-Ooooooh-Wa
(Walk, walk, walk, walk)
Ooo-Wee-Ooooooh-Wa
(Walk, walk, walk, walk)
Ooo-Wee-Ooooooh-Wa
(Walk, walk, walk, walk)

“Rag Doll” (1964)

“Rag Doll”

Ooh, ooh
Ah, Rag doll ooh, ooh
Rag doll, ooh(Hand me down)
When she was just a kid her clothes were hand-me-downs
(Hand me down)
They always laughed at her when she came into townCalled her Rag Doll
Little Rag Doll
Such a pretty face
Should be dressed in laceOoh, ooh
Ah, Rag doll ooh, ooh
Rag doll, ooh(Shag rag doll)
I’d change her sad rags into glad rags if I could
(If I could)
My folks won’t let me cause they say that she’s no goodShe’s a rag doll
Such a rag doll
Though I love her so
I can’t let her knowOoh ooh
Ah, Rag doll
I love you just the way you are
Oh, Rag Doll, ooh
Oh, Rag Doll, ooh

And, “December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night)” (1975).


“December, 1963 (Oh, What A Night)”

Oh, what a night
Late December, back in ’63
What a very special time for me
As I remember, what a nightOh, what a night
You know, I didn’t even know her name
But I was never gonna be the same
What a lady, what a nightOh, I
I got a funny feeling when she walked in the room
Hey, my
As I recall, it ended much too soonOh, what a night
Hypnotizing, mesmerizing me
She was everything I dreamed she’d be
Sweet surrender, what a nightAnd I felt a rush like a rolling bolt of thunder
Spinning my head around and taking my body under
Oh, what a nightOh, I
Got a funny feeling when she walked in the room
Hey, my
As I recall, it ended much too soonOh, what a night
Why’d it take so long to see the light?
Seemed so wrong, but now it seems so right
What a lady, what a night

Oh, I felt a rush like a rolling bolt of thunder
Spinning my head around and taking my body under
Oh, what a night (Do do do do do, do do do do)
Oh, what a night (Do do do do do, do do do do)
Oh, what a night (Do do do do do, do do do do)
Oh, what a night (Do do do do do, do do do do)
Oh, what a night (Do do do do do, do do do do)
Oh, what a night (Do do do do do, do do do do)
Oh, what a night (Do do do do do, do do do do)

Valli’s recording of the song “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” reached number two in 1967. “You’re Ready Now”, a Valli solo recording from 1966, became a surprise hit in the UK as part of the Northern soul scene and hit number eleven on the British pop charts in December 1970. As a solo artist, Valli scored number-one hits with the songs “My Eyes Adored You” (1974) and “Grease” (1978).

Valli, Tommy DeVito, Nick Massi and Bob Gaudio – the original members of The Four Seasons – were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990 and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1999.

Happy Birthday Frankie Valli:

TRIVIA:

  • Elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (as a member of The Four Seasons) in 1990.
  • The Broadway musical, “Jersey Boys”, about the beginnings of The Four Seasons, was awarded four Tony Awards in 2006, including Best Original Musical, Best Actor (John Lloyd Young), Best Actor in a Featured Role (Christian Hoff) and Best Lighting Design in a Musical.
  • When The Four Seasons finally made it, their age was something of an embarrassment. They were a good ten years older than The Beach Boys. The record companies thought no teenagers would listen to a band in their 30s. Valli was 28 when “Sherry” became a hit, and his record company–VeeJay–thought it would be better if he were considered 25, so his age was changed. However, his real age and birth date (1934) were on the back of an album Valli made as part of The Four Lovers, a group he was in before The Four Seasons. Then, when The Four Seasons were arrested in Columbus, OH, for not paying for the hotel rooms the prior year, Valli’s mugshot became public and, based on his driver’s license and police record, it became obvious that he was born in 1934.
  • Father of three daughters (Antonia, Francine and Celia), a son (Francesco Valli) and twin boys (Emilio and Brando).
  • His son, Francesco Valli, also made a small appearance in the same Full House (1987) episode, Full House: D.J.’s Choice (1995), in which his father appeared.
  • On July 4, 1987, Valli and The Four Seasons appeared live on an HBO TV special as part of an all-day benefit for Vietnam veterans titled “Welcome Home”.They performed several of their hits, including “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You”, the signature song from The Deer Hunter (1978).
  • In 1965, due to contractual considerations with Vall singing at an even higher pitch, The Four Seasons released two singles as “The Wonder Who”: “Don’t Think Twice It’s All Right” (#12 US Pop) and “(Look Down) That Lonesome Road” (#89 US Pop).
  • He was inducted into the 2010 New Jersey Hall of Fame for his services and contributions to Arts and Entertainment.
  • Was a member of The Four Lovers, who had a minor hit in 1956 with “You’re The Apple of My Eye” (RCA Records). After the group broke up, Valli and fellow group member Tommy DeVito joined a group that eventually became The Four Seasons.
  • Had three daughters and three sons. Sadly, two of his daughters died less than a year apart. His stepdaughter Celia was killed in a car accident in 1980. Six months later his daughter Francine died of a drug overdose.
  • Was a barber before turning to music.
  • Grew up in a tough, public housing project in Newark, NJ. According to Tommy DeVito, “There was only three ways out: You could join the army. You could get mobbed up. Or you could become a star.”

(Sources: IMDb & Wikipedia)

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