There was a time when the Four Seasons were tremendously popular. They were THE band before some fellows from Liverpool name George, John, Paul, and Ringo came onto the scene. Then they had their thunder stolen just a wee bit. They had quite a run, though, and they wound up in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990. This video of them singing “December 1963 (Oh, What A Night” will show you why they were so popular.
In the video, drummer Gerry Polci is lead singing with some back-up from Frankie Valli. I’ve always liked singing drummers. Phil Collins, for example. Jimmy Marinos from “The Romantics” is another. The song was a hit as soon as it came out in 1975. It hit No. 1 on the weekly charts in the United States and Canada and reached as high as No. 2 in other countries. It was No. 4 on Billboard’s “Hot 100” at the end of the year in the United States.
Valli has one of the most recognizable singing voices out there. While some may not have liked his falsetto, it was what distinguished him and it made them a real big hit in the ‘60’s. This time, he’s not the one singing falsetto… it’s Don Ciccone doing it – Frankie’s singing in a normal register. They all look like they are having fun with this song .
Bands make a lot of changes to a song during its composition. For example, this was originally supposed to be about 1933, when Prohibition came to an end. Valli wanted it to be about a one-night stand of sorts, so they made it December, 1963, which was when the song’s writer and his co-writer, his wife, met. The cast of the “Jersey Boys” movie.. the one about Valli and the Four Seasons, sing this at the end of the movie.
What was your favorite Four Seasons song? Did you like “Jersey Boys”?