When I was a teenager, my friends and I were always attending summer concerts. That was in the mid-1980s and the bands looked more like this.
Recently, I’ve been taking in some concerts at our local venue, Wolftrap Center for the Performing Arts. They are an outdoor arena with seating under cover as well as on the lawn. If you buy tickets for the lawn, you can bring a lawn chair, food and drinks, and then you just sit back and enjoy. For a friend’s birthday this week, I joined her and her husband for an evening under the stars to see Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. Now, I’m not particularly a fan. As a matter of fact, all week I was telling people that I was going to see Frankie Avalon. Oops. Once, I got there I realized I had the wrong Frankie.
Frankie V. was well before my time and no, I haven’t even seen Jersey Boys. The only song I knew for sure was the theme song from Grease. And I wasn’t even allowed to watch that movie when it first came out. I didn’t see it until I was in my twenties. My whole reason for going to Frankie Valli was to hang out with good friends and listen to some music.
To say I was impressed with this eighty-year-old’s vocal strength, as well as the impeccable harmonies by the Four Seasons, would be an understatement. I was neither the oldest nor the youngest person in attendance, but everyone around me was dancing and singing along to songs like, “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” “Walk Like a Man,” and “My Eyes Adored You.” Over and over I found myself turning to my friends and exclaiming, “Oh, I know this song! I didn’t know he did this one.”
There was also some realization for all three of us that we had turned into our parents. Whereas we used to listen to headbanging metal or country music, we found ourselves completely excited by songs from our parents' era. There was something both poignant and disturbing in that notion, but when the band began playing “Oh what a Night” and we all rushed to the edge of the lawn to dance along, age hardly mattered. We were all Frankie Valli fans.