February 10, 2012

Friday Flashback: Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons Performing ‘Dawn’ in 1982!

February 10th, 2012

Do you guys remember this television special celebrating Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons’ 20th anniversary that was recorded at Park West in Chicago back in 1982?

A little trivia about “Dawn”: It debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 on February 1, 1964 and peaked at #3 in March. The song was co-written by Bob Gaudio and Sandy Linzer and remained in the Hot 100 for 13 weeks.


  1. Charlie Calello stated in an interview that the song was originally written as a folk-flavored tune. While I’d like to hear a version of that arrangement, I’m so glad he transformed it with the spectacular arrangement we’re so familiar with.

    Comment by George O'Brien — February 10, 2012 @ 7:54 pm

  2. Even more Trivia;
    Because the guys were involved in a royalty dispute with Vee-Jay records, Dawn was withheld from Vee-Jay. It was then offered to Atlantic Records who rejected it.
    The group then signed with Phillips Records who did release Dawn and within 4 weeks was up to #3, which is where it stayed because the Beatles had 4 Top Ten hits surrounding Dawn at the time…

    Comment by Jerry D — February 13, 2012 @ 1:23 pm

  3. Please bear with me if I keep repeating myself. “Dawn (Go Away)” was recorded on November 20, 1963, along with “No Surfing Today”, and a couple more recordings singing backup for Larry Santos and Larry and the Legends. The studio session was arranged by Larry Santos, who wrote “Candy Girl”.

    There were acetate recordings of “Dawn” floating around the radio industry by “late December, back in ’63″ and early January, 1964. ARSA, Oldiesloon, and ct30 show the record charting or being played on WKBW and WLS in early January. Joey Reynolds brought an acetate to WTRX in “December, 1963″ and they were playing it around Christmas, 1963. The song then mysteriously appeared on the very first CKLW chart on January 28, 1964, at #1! That would indicate that it had been played and showed up in record request research for at least three or four weeks. Even the Beatles didn’t debut at #1, and certainly not without significant previous airplay.

    If only it had been officially released at the time the acetates were floating around, it would have been a mutiple week #1.

    Comment by Ted Hammond — February 13, 2012 @ 8:34 pm

  4. It may be interesting to note that some of the delay in releasing “Dawn” might have had something to do with the assination of JFK.

    It seemed like the whole country was “on hold” along with many industries like pop music during the mourning period.

    Comment by Ray — February 17, 2012 @ 7:14 am

  5. Dawn showed the range of Frankie’s voice especially his falsetto. It also was not a stereo recording.

    Comment by Marty Hoffer — February 17, 2012 @ 9:47 pm

  6. Great chart discussions! Okay, I’d love more details: So, Atlantic Records rejected “Dawn”? Any details on this? thanks…

    Comment by Susie — February 17, 2012 @ 11:05 pm

  7. I have heard that there were problems negotiating with Atlantic regarding who owned what rights. I think David and some others here know more about this.

    One thing is certain. Atlantic could not have rejected “Dawn (Go Away)” based on the quality. It is unquestionably a great record. I can’t believe any recording executive could have rejected it on that basis.

    Besides “Dawn” and “No Surfing Today”, four other recordings recorded that day, of which there were an A and B side of two singles, all backed by The Four Seasons, WERE released by Atlantic. One single was attributed to Larry Santos, the other to Larry and The Legends. Neither single charted nationally. Goldmine says those were released in 1964 also, giving credence to the theory mentioned by Ray that the nation was “on hold”.

    Comment by Ted Hammond — February 18, 2012 @ 12:00 am

  8. Don’t Pick On My Baby-Larry And The Legends-Released by Atlantic in 1964.

    I assume that it is Larry Santos singing in a higher register, sounding more like Del Shannon than the “Whirlpool” advertisement song singer we’re more familiar with. But Frankie and Nicky are clearly heard on this. Maybe Patti remembers this.


    Flip side was “Creep”.

    Comment by Ted Hammond — February 18, 2012 @ 2:20 pm

  9. Don’t pick on my baby, Have to look into this one. I do have to add, when it came to Frankie and Nicky putting there voices together on any material will always be an “AWSOME” blend.
    The mix of this recording could have been a lot clearer.:)


    Comment by Patti Massi-Candeliere — February 20, 2012 @ 7:43 am

  10. This is taken right off the 45 RPM record, Patti, probably the one shown. The song was written by Crewe-Calello-Santos, arranged and conducted by Calello, and produced by Crewe, reading from the record pictured on the video. Being from an old 45, it’s not a really good recording, Patti. I wonder where the masters would be for this, but then again, if there were masters, maybe there would be a true stereo remix done for “Dawn”.

    Nick sounds like he is singing a unsion bass part with someone else in some places, but alone in others. The part that I think is clearly Larry Santos, but in a tenor falsetto range, is where he sings “but she’s not a run around” and then “or I’ll chase you right out of town.

    My favorite jingle by Larry Santos is “The Boat Show”, which he sings with his daughter. I can’t find it anywhere, and few even remember it. But you can hear his same unique voice pattern through the tenor falsetto on “Don’t Pick On My Baby”.

    Comment by Ted Hammond — February 20, 2012 @ 1:14 pm

  11. Thanks Ted,
    Another tune of Larry Santos is Candy Girl. And as proud as he is I’m sure of “The 4 Seasons” singing and blending on that song. WoW! May I say as always, one of my many favorites. Its hard when you love and know them all.


    Comment by Patti Massi-Candeliere — February 20, 2012 @ 7:42 pm

  12. Ted,
    I hope its the same Santos who did “Candy Girl”….
    Just assume it would be Larry?


    Comment by Patti Massi-Candeliere — February 20, 2012 @ 8:03 pm

  13. The only other famous Santos I can think of is Joe Santos, who plays Sgt. Becker on “The Rockford Files”, the show where FV4S fan David Chase previewed some of the same plot situations that were later used in “The Sopranos”. “The Sopranos” probably also helped spark interest in JB, Patti, due to the many FV4S songs played, episodes named, and Frankie Valli’s portrayal of Rusty Millio on later episodes of The Sopranos.

    Yes, it’s certainly the same Larry Santos, who later lived in Michigan for many years, where he started in a TV show called “Hot Fudge” in the 1970s. Oneonta, NY may claim Larry Santos, buy he’s contributed so much in so many areas, that people think he must be more than one person.

    Comment by Ted Hammond — February 21, 2012 @ 9:15 pm

  14. I just discovered that Angelo Garepe (Joe Santos) was a close associate of Rusty Millio (Frankie Valli) on The Sopranos. So they must know each other also!

    Comment by Ted Hammond — February 23, 2012 @ 9:29 am

  15. “DAWN” being put as a single, on Philips Label, 1964 there was also an album. “DAWN” (GO AWAY) THE 4 SEASONS,and 11 other “GREAT” songs.

    Frankie Valli, Bob Gaudio, Nick Massi, Tommy DeVito.

    “Dawn”, Bob Gaudio-Sandy Linzer co-wrote


    A Bob Crewe: Production
    Musical Arrangement: Bob Gaudio
    Vocal Arrangements by: Nick Massi

    I add this to my list of favorites, as I do all the albums and love each song and each album better than the next.Love the message that is shared on this album by someone very “Special”. Seems to go like this:

    GREETINGS…to the swingin’est of all swingin’ you Teen-Agers, (and all the young at heart), in this here nation.

    Here is the bootin’ album that you have asked for by the not-teasin’ 4 season!!!

    Dig the smash sound of “DAWN” (GO AWAY)!!…and the Socko “BIG MAN’S WORLD”… and the Rockin’ “ONLY YESTERDAY”!!!! A triple threat, man, plus 9 of the gassiest golden-goodies any red-blooded music lover would want…Everyone a winner the first time around, and now twice as tough due to the wailin’ sound of ranky-tanky little Frankie and his pleasin’ Seasons. Listen, friends…dig “16 CANDLES” and all the other all-timers… and swing with 3 gassy new ones headed for golden-oldie-land themselves!!!! Got it ?????Go with it…and know why these four guys prove once again why they continue, hit after hit, to remain AMERICA’S hottest and coolest VOCAL group.

    The Boss with the hot sauce
    The Man who brought the sound to town
    The Geater with the Heater
    Jerry Blavitt, Radio Station WHAT,
    Philadelphia, Pa.

    Jerry loved and smiled on how you phased this on the “DAWN” album. I remember these songs as if it were “ONLY YESTERDAY”. And how you felt of these great guys in the 60′s right up to this future. Your special. Glad Bob Gaudio added on there albums songs of other artists so we get to hear how they add there own style and make it there own. I must say we have good taste in loving and admiring such a wonderful group. And just imagine without “THE 4 SEASONS” there would be no “JERSEY BOYS”. So blessed and thrilled that We and the WORLD get to enjoy! them both. History is repeating itself. During these years I can honestly say when it comes to You, cousin Brucie, Joey Reynolds (will hopefully be adding another station in this upcoming year) will always be my favorites in this area of Radio This album will be played all week from my car to the house, and remembering all these songs and tearing up more when I hear that solo done by my dad, Nick Massi on “DON’T LET GO” and so
    sounding just like the king Elvis, who also put this song out a while back….

    Thanks for letting me share on the song “DAWN” and what this album meant to me as a kid, and now along with all the others.

    CIAO, :)

    Patti Massi-Candeliere

    Comment by Patti Massi-Candeliere — February 24, 2012 @ 9:52 am

  16. For those who never heard this song, “DON’T LET GO” its a must listen too!!!along with all the other songs on this album…. Nick Massi’s deep voice gives that style of Elvis.
    Besides his bass playing and vocal arranging, its a song worth enjoying by the Late, Great Nick Massi. All these songs,they are so “The 4 Seasons”… As we look back on just one of many albums these “JERSEY BOYS” did in those early days together…..



    Comment by Margie and Patti Massi — March 8, 2012 @ 5:08 pm

  17. Back in 1964, WINS in NY had a feature whereby each week, each of their DJs would pick a new release by an unknown or little-known act that the jock thought would become a hit, and put it in his rotation for that week. The morning man at the time was Ed Hider, and if memory serves, Hider selected Don’t Pick On My Baby as his “Hider High-Rider” for the week. I’ve always loved that song and it was disappointing that it never took off.

    Comment by Randy Dannenfelser — January 26, 2014 @ 11:43 pm

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