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Tom Austin: Tom Austin

Frank, Dino, Sammy, and Mafia dons all come together at the Riviera.


Tom Austin


December 2015


Tom Austin
Photo ©  The Record.

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Tom Austin’s first book, Bill Miller’s Riviera, America’s Showplace, which he co-authored with Ron Kase started Tom on his way to writing his novel, Bridge to the Riviera. As a songwriter he has written several popular music favorites with Bob Gaudio. His two most famous are “Short Shorts” and “Believe Me”. Recently, Tom Received a platinum album for his musical contribution to the Broadway mega-hit show Jersey Boys. Tom’s personal memorabilia has been on display in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. In 2015, he was inducted into the New Jersey Doo Wop Hall of Fame. Besides writing music he is also an accomplished drummer and still plays with his own band The Royal Teens. Tom is currently the resident artist at the prestigious Salmagundi Club in New York.


What are you reading?  What's on your nightstand?

I am reading a new book called Cent’ Anni the Sinatra Legend by Richard Muti.

Where do you go to get inspired?

I get inspired by works of Art.

What's something that surprised you recently (in a good way)?

The boat I was trying to sell for the past three years finally was sold.

Where do you write?

At 6:00 am in the morning every day I go to my office in town and write.

What/who makes you laugh? Why?

I watch the Seinfeld show and laugh myself silly.

Favorite fictional character ever?

My favorite fictional characters are the “Dead End Kids”.

What are you working on?

I am writing a new book on the life of Charles Calello a music arranger and conductor who has 38 top ten musical hits to his credit.


On Bridge to the Riviera:

"When I was a teenager just beginning my singing career, Al Martino - my friend and a wonderful singer - took me to the Riviera for dinner and a show. I'll never forget how this Fort Lee, New Jersey nightclub knocked me out. Perched at the edge of the Palisades over-looking the George Washington Bridge, it was the ultimate in style, class, and excitement. High Scoiety, the Mob, and the greatest entertainers in America all rubbed elbows. Tom Austin's new novel takes me back to that time and place of leggy chorus girls and revolving bandstands and hidden casinos. I wish it had lasted longer, so that I could have performed there."
—Frankie Avalong, star of stage, screen, and television

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