Don Ciccone, Brian Gari's friend of 50 years, unexpectedly passed away last year at the age of 70. He was the former lead singer of the Critters. He sang "Younger Girl" and wrote and sang "Mr. Dieingly Sad."
He joined The Four Seasons and played bass and sang on the hits "Who Loves You?" and "December '63 (Oh What a Night)."
He later became a Shondell with Tommy James and last performed in The Hit Men.
A week before he died, he sent Brian an email telling him his next project would be Don Ciccone Sings Brian Gari. His heart gave out before he could put it together. Instead of letting the project languish, Brian took the original demos and kept them intact when they had a rhythm section because it was mostly Don playing. When it was simply a bare vocal and piano (and/or guitar), he added the arrangements they had originally envisioned with the help of Peter Millrose, Lee Shapiro & John Paiva of the Four Seasons and the brilliant guitarist Dean Bailin ("Escape--The Pina Colada Song"). A special gift to this project was finding Don's gorgeous, original orchestration for "The Non-Affair Affair." He never got to hear it played, but the rest of you can now. Over 20 tracks & 66 minutes.
Many thanks to Brian for letting us have the details.
Don Ciccone with Lee Shapiro and John Paiva, Gerry Polci and Frankie Valli
By Lynn Boleyn MBE