March 22, 2008

The Mob and the Original Jersey Boys

March 22nd, 2008

Telegraph’s Roya Nikkhah states that the musical Jersey Boys has made Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons the toast of the West End, winning them rave reviews and standing ovations. Yet the pop stars whose appeal in the Fifties and Sixties was their clean-cut image had links to the Mob, who helped them in their early career – an unsavoury connection that they strove to keep secret from adoring fans.

Growing up on the streets of Newark, New Jersey, Frankie Valli, Tommy DeVito, Bob Gaudio and Nick Massi had frequent brushes with the law themselves, as well as close links with the Mafia.

In an interview with The Sunday Telegraph, Gaudio, 65, the co-writer of many of the group’s hits, has revealed that at the height of their fame in the Sixties, it would have been impossible for The Four Seasons to come clean about their lives.

“Back then, things were a little clean-cut, don’t forget, so the idea of our story getting out was horrifying to us,” he said.

“We certainly rubbed shoulders with a lot of unsavoury characters, but you know, the clubs were essentially owned by the Mob so it was very difficult not to be involved or around them,” Gaudio said.

Visit the Telegraph website to read the entire interview.

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