Frankie Valli, NJ’s Own, Turns 87 and Still Cranks Out the Hits
New Jersey entertainment icon Frankie Valli has been performing in front of sold out audiences for 60 years.
As a performer who had his initial success in the 60’s, Frankie maintained his popularity throughout the 60’s then the late 70’s and into the 80’s with his number one hit Grease from the movie and Broadway hit musical and then came his character on the Soprano’s along with the success of Jersey Boys on Broadway.
It seems Frankie is impervious to entertainment failure. The phrase “Frankie’s back!” is a falsehood, he never left, and he’s always been on top of his game, always touring and always entertaining the very crowded audiences that adore him worldwide.
The New Jersey Hall of Famer and the 1990 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee turns 87 this week. He’s still touring at 87 and as a matter of fact he’s scheduled to be at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in his home town of Newark this November.
Frankie is Jersey tough, growing up on the streets of Newark in the Stephan Crane Housing project taught him to be street smart but it also provided him with a talented cast of friends and bandmates who all shared the same passion for music. As a matter of fact one of those friends was actor Joe Pesci who some say was an honorary member of the Four Seasons.
Frankie and the boys would eventually become the Four Seasons and would sell over 100 million records. They had an amazing popularity and were successful even though they were in the middle of the Beatles takeover of US radio airplay.
Frankie and the Four Seasons kept a pretty even keel during some questionable times that included a huge surge of success and some inner band ego problems and management issues. Most bands lose it after being confronted with that but they survived and if anything became a stronger, more focused group that put music and entertaining first.
I’ve had the very special privilege of working with Frankie and hosting several of his shows. I noticed that everything runs succinctly, like a fine tune watch, the pre show run through is tight, the music is awesome and Frankie hits every mark on the stage with a comfortable ease. I got a chance to talk with him briefly and we talked about his ability to keep going, he said that light exercise and diet help him stay fit and the love of the music and his fans keeps him going strong. I don’t think you can get any stronger. Frankie Valli at 87, still cranking out the hits. Happy birthday Frankie and thank you.