Bob Crewe

One of the most successful pop/rock producers of the 1960s, Bob Crewe is primarily known for his work with the Four Seasons, many of whose hits he also had a hand in writing. Crewe also got hits with Diane Renay, Mitch Ryder, Freddy Cannon, and several others. He also made some solo recordings, although he only got a big hit with one, the 1966 instrumental "Music to Watch Girls By." Crewe entered the music business as both a singer, making numerous obscure recordings from the '50s onwards, and songwriter. He rose to prominence with work for Philadelphia-area labels, writing and producing, with partner Frank Slay, the Rays' classic doo wop hit "Silhouettes." The Crewe-Slay team became partners in the Swan label, where Crewe was involved in writing and production for early hits by Freddy Cannon ("Tallahassee Lassie" being the biggest) and Billy & Lillie ("La Dee Dah"). The Crewe sound was early rock & roll, diluted through a pop filter for a white teenage market, but with Cannon's hits especially retaining some raucousness. Hits like "Tallahassee Lassie" demonstrated Crewe's talents at getting tracks with stomping rhythms and hand claps, which he would build upon in a more artful fashion in his sides with the Four Seasons.

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