BOBBY RYDELL: Teen Idol on the Rocks

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Bio

"Crosby, Sinatra, Como, Damone, Lawrence, Darin, and - in a different idiom - Frankie Laine, Johnnie Ray, and even Elvis Presley. To be such an artist takes more sweat, strain, intense devotion, and dedication than most people can conceive of. Bobby Rydell is that type of artist." - FRANK SINATRA, JR.

At 17, Bobby Rydell was the toast of American Bandstand - the kid from Italian South Philly with the smoothest voice, the highest pompadour, and the sweetest smile. And there were those hits: "Wild One," "Volare," and "Forget Him," to name a few. He was far more than just a teen idol. Bobby's voice and boy next door charm earned him a spot singing, acting, and dancing with Ann-Margret in the hit film Bye Bye Birdie. His phrasing and musicianship prompted Frank Sinatra to anoint him as his favorite young singer, and his comedic talents made him a nighttime fixture during the golden age of TV variety shows.

But under his million dollar smile, Bobby was hiding sorrows: a domineering, controlling stage mother and the terminal illness of Camille, his childhood sweetheart and wife of thirty-five years. Years of touring and thrilling audiences across America as a "Golden Boy" gave no hint to his fans that Bobby was in deep trouble; he was drinking his way into oblivion. But he survived to perform again, and here - with streetwise wit and warmth - to tell his story of stardom, hometown pride, and redemption.

* * *

Bobby Rydell's career spans six decades and encompasses every area of the entertainment world. His debut in the late '50s as a rock and roll teen idol lead to starring roles in such hit films as "Bye Bye Birdie" and plays such as "West Side Story." Bobby has made countless network TV appearances throughout the world on shows like Ed Sullivan, Jack Benny, George Burns, Milton Berle, Perry Como and of course American Bandstand. He was also a semi-regular on The Red Skelton Hour for many years. Working with the "greats" of comedy, Bobby was able to develop an uncanny comedic gift.

Bobby has earned a reputation as a classic performer. Not only is he a superb singer whose voice has gotten better over the years - he has proved to be an outstanding drummer, an agile dancer and an extremely fine actor, with an unsurpassed knack for comedy.

A polished performer at the age of 19, he was the youngest person ever to headline the famous Copacabana in New York. Bobby's recording career earned him 34 Top 40 hits, placing him in the Top 5 artists of his era (Billboard Magazine). Bobby's hits include million selling singles "Volare," "Wild One," "We Got Love," "Kissin' Time," "Swingin' School," and "Forget Him," selling a combined total of over 25 million records.

Today Bobby enjoys a career that is full. He has a busy schedule throughout the world as a headline solo act. Australia has welcomed him for 20 tours Down Under, where he continues to be a favorite performer. Bobby also performs regularly in Las Vegas and Atlantic City. For the past 25 years, Bobby has also performed over 700 shows in the must-see production called "The Golden Boys." This is a happy, fun-filled look back at a simpler time in music history with his childhood pals, Frankie Avalon and Fabian.

Bobby Rydell's influence on popular music has been profound. When the producers of Grease wanted to pay tribute to the era in which the popular musical was set, they named the high school where most of the action took place "Rydell High" in his honor. Recently, Bobby appeared with Ann-Margret at The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences premiere of Bye Bye Birdie's digital restoration at the Samuel Goldwyn Theatre in Beverly Hills.

In 1995, his hometown of Philadelphia, PA renamed the street he was born "Bobby Rydell Boulevard." The City of Philadelphia sponsored "block party" followed dedication ceremonies. Quite a tribute to a City's favorite native son! Wildwood, NJ also has a street named for Bobby in appreciation of Bobby's massive hit, "Wildwood Days."

On July 9, 2012 Bobby underwent a double organ transplant. He received 75 percent of a liver and one kidney. His life was about to end when the generous family of a dying child saved eight lives by organ donation. Bobby returned to the stage in Las Vegas in just six months, turning near tragedy to triumph. Today he is dedicated to public awareness, spreading the word to the world, in his travels, about the Gift of Life thru organ donation.

The teen idol, now a seasoned performer, continues to perform to sell out audiences throughout the world. As a review of a recent performance put it, "Bobby Rydell is a true American music treasure."

Press Releases

June 13, 2016
BOBBY RYDELL TO EMBARK ON NATIONWIDE SPECIAL EVENTS & BOOK TOUR BEHIND ACCLAIMED NEW AUTOBIOGRAPHY, 'TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS'

'Justin Bieber of the Camelot Era' to Bring Candid, Compelling 'Tale of Second Chances' to Fans of All Ages with Series of Intimate Concerts, Conversations, and Book Signings

Story of Rise to Superstardom through Alcoholism and Life-Saving Double Transplant Surgery Hailed as 'Captivating,' 'Charming,' 'Extraordinary,' 'Unbelievable,' 'Highly Entertaining,' 'Deeply Personal,' 'Sometimes Painful,' 'Fascinating' ... and More!

***AUTHOR AVAILABLE FOR TV, RADIO, PRINT & ONLINE INTERVIEWS***

PHILADELPHIA (June 13, 2016) - With reviewers unanimously agreeing that multitalented entertainer BOBBY RYDELL has told one hell of a story in his compelling new autobiography, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS, the Justin Bieber of the "Camelot" era will be bringing his brutally candid and compelling "Tale of Second Chances" directly to his fans with an extensive nationwide Special Events & Book Tour.

Running concurrently with his ongoing concert performances, both solo and alongside fellow South Philly "Golden Boys" Frankie Avalon and Fabian, Rydell's promotional Special Events & Book Tour will allow Bobby Watchers young and old to see and hear all sides of America's original teen idol as he combines traditional book signings with distinctly intimate performances and conversations with Grammy award-winning writers and musicians, and other music and entertainment media veterans. Rydell will be signing copies of TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: A Tale of Second Chances (Doctor Licks Publishing, 249 pp., $16.95) at all special events and personal appearances as well.

Among the interviewers scheduled to be "in conversation" with Rydell will be Rolling Stone contributing editor and Grammy-winning essayist Anthony DeCurtis, Ralph J. Gleason Award-winning author and Grammy-winning musician, arranger, and record producer Allan Slutsky, veteran New York TV personality Bill Boggs, and longtime Philadelphia music and entertainment columnist and radio personality Chuck Darrow. Slutsky, winner of the first Rolling Stone/BMI Gleason Award for writing Standing in the Shadows of Motown, later released as a highly acclaimed feature film, also is Rydell's TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS co-author.

DeCurtis will be "in conversation" with Rydell at the 92Y in New York City (July 27), part of a prestigious decade-long series that has included Lou Reed, Sting, Deborah Harry, Alanis Morissette, Questlove, Clive Davis, and Dion. Darrow will chat with Rydell as part of "An Intimate Evening" concert performance at Tim McLoone's Supper Club in Asbury Park, NJ (Aug. 10); Boggs will lead a discussion with Rydell at the Friars Club in New York in October, and Slutsky and other music journalists and media personalities will host Q&A sessions this fall at numerous special concert events across the country.

From his vivid childhood on the fabled mid-20th-century streets of South Philadelphia through his more recent battles with alcoholism, and his lifesaving double-transplant surgery (he shares a liver with an eight-year-old girl), Rydell "has unbelievable stories to tell, and he's sharing the good, the bad, and the fascinating," says Parade Magazine. The Huffington Post adds: TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS is "pure rock n' roll nostalgia with a big dose of personal memories that will tear your heart out. ... another reason to embrace him even more!"

Rita Cosby, Emmy-winning TV and radio host, calls the book "captivating, charming and extraordinary as the man himself," professing her love for "its soaring story line." Stu Bykofsky, widely regarded veteran Philadelphia Daily News columnist, praised Rydell's "conversational style" and marveled how he "cuts himself no slack when he discusses how and when he crawled into the bottle" in a book "so honest and warm it makes you glad he got through it and is performing today." Fox News, Closer Weekly, Radio Times (NPR), Goldmine, ABC News Radio, Associated Press Radio, Premiere Network, Westwood One, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Liz Smith, Mitch Albom, Cousin Brucie, John Fugelsang, Public Television's Steve Adubato, and dozens more media already have clamored to interview Rydell for the book.

The attention surrounding TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS is just one aspect further confirming Rydell's still explosive career. Aside from continuing to tour around the world as a "saloon swingin'" solo artist and with fellow South Philly "Golden Boys" Frankie Avalon and Fabian in a road show with over 30 years of staying power, Rydell will be gracing the silver screen next year in Taylor Hackford's The Comedian with Robert De Niro - 54 years after his indelible song-and-dance acting stint opposite Ann-Margret in the iconic movie musical Bye Bye Birdie.

Humorous, tragic, and inspiring as well, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS stands as one of the most important non-fiction books of 2016.

TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS is available NOW at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and book stores throughout America. Autographed copies and books with customized personal messages can be ordered exclusively at www.bobbyrydellbook.com.

May 4, 2016
UNANIMOUS PRAISE FOR BOBBY RYDELL AUTOBIOGRAPHY 'TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS' - OUT TODAY!

Candid, Compelling 'Tale of Second Chances' Hailed as 'Captivating,' 'Charming,' 'Extraordinary,' 'Unbelievable,' 'Highly Entertaining,' 'Deeply Personal,' 'Sometimes Painful,' 'Fascinating' Story of Rise to Superstardom through Alcoholism and Life-Saving Double Transplant Surgery by 'Justin Bieber of the Camelot Era'

***AUTHOR AVAILABLE FOR TV, RADIO, PRINT & ONLINE INTERVIEWS***

PHILADELPHIA (May 4, 2016) - More than a half century since his reign as the Justin Bieber of the "Camelot" era, reviewers unanimously agree that multitalented entertainer BOBBY RYDELL has told one hell of a story with today's release of his compelling new autobiography, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: A Tale of Second Chances (Doctor Licks Publishing, 249 pp., $16.95).

From his vivid childhood on the fabled mid-20th-century streets of South Philadelphia through his more recent battles with alcoholism, and his lifesaving double-transplant surgery (he shares a liver with an eight-year-old girl), Rydell "has unbelievable stories to tell, and he's sharing the good, the bad, and the fascinating," says Parade Magazine. The Huffington Post adds: TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS is "pure rock n' roll nostalgia with a big dose of personal memories that will tear your heart out. ... another reason to embrace him even more!"

Rita Cosby, Emmy-winning TV and radio host, calls the book "captivating, charming and extraordinary as the man himself," professing her love for "its soaring story line." Stu Bykofsky, widely regarded veteran Philadelphia Daily News columnist, praised Rydell's "conversational style" and marveled how he "cuts himself no slack when he discusses how and when he crawled into the bottle" in a book "so honest and warm it makes you glad he got through it and is performing today."

The stars aligned in New York last week at Rydell's star-studded party celebrating the impending arrival of TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS and its author's 74th birthday. Danny Aiello, Tony Danza, Paul Shaffer, Gilbert Gottfried, and Joe Piscopo were among the overflow crowd of celebrities, industry VIPs and media who packed Patsy's Italian Restaurant, the legendary Frank Sinatra haunt, in Rydell's honor. An even larger hometown celebration is scheduled for Friday in - where else? - South Philadelphia. Fox News, Closer Weekly, Goldmine, ABC News Radio, Associated Press Radio, Premiere Network, Westwood One, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Liz Smith, Mitch Albom, Cousin Brucie, John Fugelsang, Public Television's Steve Adubato, and dozens more media already have clamored to interview Rydell for the book. Additionally, a combination concert/book tour is currently being planned for the summer.

The attention surrounding TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS is just one aspect further confirming Rydell's still explosive career. Aside from continuing to tour around the world as a "saloon swingin'" solo artist and with fellow South Philly "Golden Boys" Frankie Avalon and Fabian in a road show with over 30 years of staying power, Rydell will be gracing the silver screen next year in Taylor Hackford's The Comedian with Robert De Niro - 54 years after his indelible song-and-dance acting stint opposite Ann-Margret in the iconic movie musical Bye Bye Birdie.

Co-written with award-winning musician-author-filmmaker Allan Slutsky (Standing in the Shadows of Motown), TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS not only tells the story of Bobby Rydell, but that of American pop culture through the past six decades. He writes of encounters with such 20th century show business giants as Sinatra, Ann-Margret, The Beatles, Red Skelton, Jack Benny and Dick Clark, whose Philly-based American Bandstand helped make Rydell the world's biggest teen idol in the years between Elvis Presley's army induction and the advent of Beatlemania. But TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS also is a very personal - and often-painful - story which delves into the darker and more dramatic aspects of Rydell's life, including the death of his beloved first wife, Camille, his decades of alcohol abuse, and the last-ditch liver and kidney transplant surgery that saved his life.

Humorous, tragic, and inspiring as well, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS stands as one of the most important non-fiction books of 2016.

TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS (Doctor Licks Publishing) is available NOW at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and book stores throughout America. Autographed copies and books with customized personal messages can be ordered exclusively at www.bobbyrydellbook.com.

TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: A Tale of Second Chances
By Bobby Rydell, with Allan Slutsky
Doctor Licks Publishing
Softcover | 249 Pages | ISBN 978-0-9973851-0-6 | $16.95

March 22, 2016
TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: The Bobby Rydell Autobiography; From Rise to Superstardom through Alcoholism and Life-Saving Double Transplant Surgery, 'Justin Bieber of the Camelot Era' Releases Candid and Compelling 'Tale of Second Chances'

***AUTHOR AVAILABLE FOR TV, RADIO, PRINT & ONLINE INTERVIEWS***

"Crosby, Sinatra, Como, Damone, Lawrence, Darin, and - in a different idiom - Frankie Laine, Johnnie Ray, and even Elvis Presley. To be such an artist takes more sweat, strain, intense devotion, and dedication than most people can conceive of. Bobby Rydell is that type of artist." - FRANK SINATRA, JR.

PHILADELPHIA (March 22, 2016) - From his vivid childhood on the fabled mid-20th-century streets of South Philadelphia, to his reign as the Justin Bieber of the "Camelot" era, his battles with alcoholism, and his lifesaving double-transplant surgery, multitalented entertainer BOBBY RYDELL has one hell of a story to tell.

On May 4, Bobby will share his incredible tale as he releases his candid and compelling autobiography, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: A Tale of Second Chances (Doctor Licks Publishing, 249 pp., $16.95).

Co-written with award-winning musician-author-filmmaker Allan Slutsky (Standing in the Shadows of Motown), TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS not only tells the story of Bobby Rydell, but that of American pop culture through the past six decades. In its pages, Bobby writes of his encounters with such giants of 20th century show business as Frank Sinatra, Ann-Margret, The Beatles, Red Skelton, Jack Benny and Dick Clark, whose Philly-based American Bandstand helped make Rydell the world's biggest teen idol in the years between Elvis Presley's army induction and the advent of Beatlemania. A time when Frank Sinatra called Bobby his "favorite" pop singer.

But TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS also is a very personal - and often-painful - story. Bobby delves into the darker and more dramatic aspects of his life, including the death of his beloved first wife, Camille, his decades of alcohol abuse, and the last-ditch transplant surgery that saved his life.

Among other topics covered in the book:

  • The circumstances of how Bobby lost his virginity in a Hollywood hotel suite at the age of 17.
  • How a Philadelphia mob boss helped him take a movie acting job.
  • His becoming, at age 19, the youngest-ever headliner at New York's legendary Copacabana nightclub.
  • How The Beatles paid homage to Bobby in one of their biggest hits - and how the Fab Four's emergence as a global phenomenon all but killed his career.

Humorous, tragic, fascinating, inspiring and always entertaining, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS stands as one of the most important non-fiction books of 2016.

TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS (Doctor Licks Publishing) will be available May 4, 2016 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and book stores throughout America.

TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: A Tale of Second Chances
By Bobby Rydell, with Allan Slutsky
Doctor Licks Publishing
Softcover | 249 Pages | ISBN 978-0-9973851-0-6 | $16.95

BOBBY RYDELL: Teen Idol on the Rocks

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