His eyes adored her — the rest of him slept with her.
April Kirkwood was just a naive, starstruck 16-year-old when Jersey boy Frankie Valli — frontman for the Four Seasons — took her to a Holiday Inn in Belmont, Ohio, and had sex with her, Kirkwood claims in a bombshell new book.
Jersey Boys, the Broadway smash about the now-80-year-old Valli and the Four Seasons, is now a movie directed by Clint Eastwood opening in theaters this week, but you won’t see Kirkwood’s story in it.
Her mid-1970s hotel tryst started a 20-year on-again, off-again affair with Valli, who was 39 the night he took her virginity, she told the Daily News.
“I was so in love with him. I had been going to his concerts since I was a little girl,” said Kirkwood, now 56.
“He’d seen me at 7, 8, 9 years old, I was always there in a big straw hat with his name on it,” she said.
When she showed up at one of his Ohio performances years later, now wearing a low-cut dress Valli liked what he saw, she said.
“I saw him and I said, ‘You don’t know who I am, do you?’ and he said, ‘Yes, September, I definitely know who you are,’” Kirkwood recalled.
“That’s about as funny as Frankie gets,” she added.
The married singer stood close to her and painstakingly untangled all the heavy gold chains she’d thrown around her neck to look older and more sophisticated, she said.
Then he asked her to have a drink, and the besotted teen drove herself to the Holiday Inn to meet him there.
Later, up in his room, after he’d slept with the young girl, he told her “Don’t do this with anyone else,” she said.
He went to sleep while she returned home to her parents house by midnight to get ready for school the next day.
But a week later, her mother agreed to drive her to meet Valli’s bus on the road, after getting her a prescription for the birth-control pill. She took off with the much older man, sleeping with the randy crooner in the crowded band bus, on the back seats of limos, in hotels.
Valli, born Francesco Stephen Castelluccio in Newark, kept up a sporadic affair with Kirkwood for over two decades, she claims.
The clandestine relationship had plenty of cruel moments, Kirkwood said.
“I was very young and romantic and I thought I was going to marry him,” she said.
But Valli made it clear they weren’t going to get hitched, usually after they’d just had sex.
She recalled the time they had a marathon sex session in an upstate New York hotel, and then Valli rolled over and said, “I think I’m going to marry my girlfriend.”
Although she and Valli only slept together in fits and starts — Kirkwood maintains she was faithful during her 17-year second marriage — they were frequently in touch with each other.
“He’d call me and ask me to come visit him or I’d call and ask if I could come. We talked a lot, about a lot of things,” she said.
Her book, Big Girls Do Cry, is due out in August.