February 24, 2008

Update on the First-Ever Four Seasons/Jersey Boys Tour!

February 24th, 2008

NJ.com’s Julie O’Connor has a follow-up on today’s Four Seasons/Jersey Boys tour. O’Connor states that it was nostalgia, the spirit of adventure and love of doo-wop music that drew together the unlikely group of devotees who trekked through the Newark area on the first-ever Jersey Boys tour.

From New Jersey and places as far away as Virginia and California, 15 fans of the 2006 Tony-winning Broadway show Jersey Boys toured sections of Newark and nearby Belleville by mini-bus to check out the roots of Frankie Valli, frontman of the 1960s group The Four Seasons. Some had seen the musical, which chronicles the ascent of The Four Seasons, more than 10 times. Others grew up humming to Valli tunes like “Walk Like A Man” or “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” and more recently watched him guest star on “The Sopranos.” All had discovered the tour through an ad on a show-related blog.

“It’s really been born out of the incredible response to the Broadway show,” said Audrey Rockman, the Edison resident who envisioned the tour, and who has seen Jersey Boys 20 times. “We’re adding more and more sites … I’m having trouble squeezing them in.”

Stops included the site of Valli’s first on-stage performance, group musician Bob Gaudio’s former Montclair mansion, various restaurants and locations of the show’s promotional shoots, and the Belmont Tavern in Belleville, which cast members visited prior to their Broadway opening to soak up local atmosphere.

“They have tours of New Orleans, of the homes of Hollywood stars — but here, nobody knows this,” said the tour guide, Walt Gollender, a retired talent scout from West Orange who rattled off local music history and personal recollections. “This is like digging up dinosaur bones.”


  1. Audrey, you did a fantastic job today with the bus tour, Walter was a great tour guide and the bus was filled with dedicated Jersey Boys fans who I’m sure has a great day. it was a pleasure meeting with all of them and I wish I had more time to talk to everyone, I was happy to see Howard and I seem to think this tour will be on again and again, maybe every season winter, spring, summer, and fall, a tour for all seasons, all 4-SEASONS………………

    Comment by jim petrecca — February 25, 2008 @ 12:47 am

  2. Yes…Audrey did a GREAT Job and Both My Mother and I had a GREAT Sunday outing with other 4 Seasons Fans and saw sites that we could have NEVER found by our-selves…Thanks to all it was FUN..
    Best to all 4 Seasons Fans…
    Jim Simmons
    NJ-HOME of the 4 Seasons!

    Comment by Jim R. Simmons — February 25, 2008 @ 2:19 pm

  3. today (mondays nj star ledger) has a 1/2 page article on bus trip with photos and a nice write up, thanks audrey for all you did. i was called by a lot of friends and customers about my store and bus trip, they want to be on next one. the coverage was statewide in nj because i got calls from south jersey and north jersey. it will get more coverage next time im sure, and also its on ch-16 cable tv this friday at 730pm on comcast. i will tape it for sure in case anyone cant get it. thanks again audrey jp yesterdays treasures ………..http://www.nj.com/printer/printer.ssf?/base/news-9/120391774620870.xml&coll=1

    Comment by jim petrecca — February 25, 2008 @ 7:55 pm

  4. thats on chan 26 friday nite at 730 pm its called big joes show

    Comment by jim petrecca — February 25, 2008 @ 7:56 pm

  5. http://www.nj.com/printer/printer.ssf?/base/news-9/120391774620870.xml&coll=1

    Comment by jim petrecca — February 25, 2008 @ 7:59 pm

  6. Thank you, Audrey, so much for all the hard work, late night drive-bys, and whatever else it took you to plan, organize and orchestrate the FIRST ever Four Seasons Tour (I’m hoping for future outings!) The trip was fun and informative, and well planned out from transportation, to locations to colorful guest commentators. It even included time for shopping…for Four Seasons/Jersey Boys memorbilia, of course!

    I enjoyed the trip by itself, but then it became even larger than life that very afternoon. We ended up in Manhattan at a well-known Jersey Boys’ referenced building…and then I was lucky enough to purchase the LAST cancellation ticket to the matinee. (I know, I know…the stars were in alignment!) The curtain rose & I saw the Jersey skyline just as I saw it a few hours earlier…I saw those Bloomfield/Fairfield signs on the tour…and the bar where the guys hung out…and the neighborhoods/homes where they lived. What I saw on the tour really completes the picture that begins on stage and deepens the connection we all feel with this magical show. I experienced the show on a whole different level, and I thank you for that, Audrey.


    Comment by LuluThompson — February 27, 2008 @ 12:32 am

  7. Audrey, the bus tour you planned was a wonderful way to spend a Sunday morning/afternoon. The sights were a blast to see, the music and commentary during the drive was fun and informative, the guest speaker, Walt G., was both knowledgeable and entertaining, and the stop at Jim’s P.’s Yesterday’s Treasures was a one-of-a-kind experience (what a collection of memorabilia!! — from The 4 Seasons and other musical groups, baseball and other sports-related items). And, best of all, was having the opportunity to hang out with a group of great folks with a similar interest. The tour was even mentioned the next day on New York City radio station WCBS-AM 880 with a link on their website to an article about the bus tour appearing in The Star-Ledger. Once again, Audrey, thanks for all your efforts in pulling this outing together!!!

    Comment by Len Gersten — February 27, 2008 @ 5:18 pm

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