Tight Talent

There’s no denying the lasting impact Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons continues to have on the musical landscape. You’d think they were still part of current radio’s rotation because, while their soaring falsetto days have come and gone, the music is as popular as ever.
Their continued popularity sparked the resurgence of singing groups who have taken those falsetto notes even further by adding beat box sounds, as evidenced by the legions of fans of Pentatonix and Home Free.
When the Newark, New Jersey guys first got together in the late ’50s, they could never have imagined that more than 60 years later Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons’ music would be celebrated as some of the most iconic ever recorded. Their motivation was simply to meet girls, stay in school and stay out of jail.
Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons’ national fame started in 1962 on Dick Clark’s “American Bandstand,” with a song that made full use of Valli’s remarkable range, from baritone to falsetto. The song was “Sherry” and after nine years as a recording artist, Frankie Valli became an “overnight” sensation with a No. 1 record that had a sound that was unlike anything else on the airwaves.
Their story and their music became the subject of art with the hit Broadway show and film “The Jersey Boys,” which brought more and more people into that circle of growing fans.
Now, that music comes to life once again in a show called “December ’63,” playing Laughlin for a third time at the Riverside Resort Wednesday-Sunday, Oct. 31-Nov. 4.
The group, based out of Phoenix, grew out of the popularity of the movie and Broadway mega-hit. Founder Nick Davies recruited talented young men from the Valley of the Sun and beyond to put the right pieces in place, like building a puzzle.
The show started out playing 55+ resort-style communities in Arizona which are everywhere in January, February and March. Over time “December ’63” has performed all across the United States at performing arts centers, theaters, and casinos.
“The show has now been performed in more than 25 different countries,” said Terry Davies, CEO of TAD Management. “At only 24, my son is constantly reminded just how phenomenal the music was in the ’60s and ’70s.”
The “boys of D63” (as they are affectionately known by their fans) have over 40,000 followers on Facebook and Twitter.
“Our tag line is ‘Music That Defined A Generation,’ and although I came from a different era, it still resonates with me just how much this music really did define our culture,” Nick Davies added. “It’s still amazing to me.”
In addition to Davies, the guys also include Nick Gallardo, Michael B. Williams, and Miguel Jackson. The performers are backed by a full band.
Separately these guys are artists in their own right, but together with the quality of their harmonies and solos, they make musical magic, particularly when they perform a cappella.
“The guys perform a cool a cappella version of “Silence Is Golden,” Terry Davies said. “It’s a show highlight.”
Not only are these guys tight on vocal harmonies on stage, they have a tight friendship off stage as well.
“The best part of the whole D63 movement is the friendship we have off stage — and that shows on stage as well,” Williams said.
Terry Davies agreed.
“One of the highlights of the show is watching the relationships between the four gentlemen develop right in front of your eyes,” he said.
Both Williams and Nick Davies are working on solo projects and Gallardo also performs a tribute to Richie Valens in many Buddy Holly shows around the country.
“There’s something very special about D63,” Gallardo said. “Sometimes it’s hard to put your finger on it, but when you see and hear the audience reaction, you know you are a part of something big.”
Jackson is the newest member of the group but he already fits in and feels like he’s found a home.
“It’s such a blessing to share the stage and travel the world with these three,” Jackson said.
Terry Davies knows they’ve created a show that resonates with audiences.
“The biggest challenge with putting this show together is that we wanted it to be much more than four guys singing the hits of Frankie Valli,” Terry Davies said. “All four members of D63 have the ability to front their own shows, and we have managed to garner all that talent to create a show that has amazing vocals along with some very funny moments.
“It is this humor that makes the show different than most. Their vocal sound is very close to the original and yet you walk away from the show feeling you have just made four new friends.”
In addition to the vocal harmonies and the humor, they’ve also managed to capture the choreography and feel of a live Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons concert, along with the elements of classic elegance recreating that vintage feel and putting it right back in the spotlight where it belongs.
“The last time we were in Laughlin, it was so, so good,” Nick Davies said. “The audiences were electric and we are definitely bringing our ‘A’ game and hoping for five magical nights at the Riverside.”
After the show, the guys will be outside the theater in the lobby to meet people, take photos and sign autographs.


DECEMBER ’63

Don’s Celebrity Theatre within the Riverside

Wednesday-Sunday, Oct. 31-Nov. 4 (8 p.m.)

See “Showtimes” for ticket info