Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons / The Four Seasons

Sherry & 11 Others

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The Four Seasons achieved the unusual feat of taking a popular musical style, doo wop, that was in decline to the point of being nearly moribund and reinventing it, their chief tools being lead singer Frankie Valli's falsetto and the songwriting ability of group member Bob Gaudio, who penned the number one hit that led to the release of this debut album, "Sherry," as well as its number one follow-up, also included here, "Big Girls Don't Cry" (co-written with producer Bob Crewe). Together, Valli, Gaudio, and Crewe would revolutionize the group vocal sound on the East Coast, just as the Beach Boys were doing on the West Coast, and take it into the post-Beatles era. Like most albums of its time, Sherry & 11 Others consists largely of the hit(s) plus filler: the title is apt. The arrangements of standards like "Yes Sir, That's My Baby" and "I Can't Give You Anything But Love" are especially ripe. But the Seasons' takes on such recent hits as "Never on Sunday" and "Oh! Carol" make the songs their own and make this album more than a throwaway. And, perhaps as a joke, they covered "You're the Apple of My Eye," which had been a chart single for them under the name the Four Lovers in 1956.

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