Peppermint Twist: The Mob, the Music, and the Most Famous Dance Club of the '60s

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Macmillan, Nov 13, 2012 - History - 289 pages

The never-before-told story of The Peppermint Lounge, the famed Manhattan nightspot and mobster hangout that launched an era

The Peppermint Lounge was intended to be nothing more than a front for gambling and other rackets but the club became a sensation after Dick "Cami" Camillucci began to feature a new kind of music, rock and roll. The mobsters running the place found themselves juggling rebellious youths alongside celebrities like Greta Garbo and Shirley MacLaine. When The Beatles visited the club, Cami's uncle-in-law had to restrain a hitman who was after Ringo because his girlfriend was so infatuated with the drummer.

Working with Dick Cami himself, Johnson and Selvin unveil this engrossing story of the go-go sixties and the club that inspired the classic hits "Twisting the Night Away" and "The Peppermint Twist."


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PEPPERMINT TWIST: The Mob, the Music, and the Most Famous Dance Club of the '60s

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True crime meets pop-music history in this history of the Peppermint Lounge, the Twist and the Mafia's unwitting role in starting a national craze.In 1960, Dick Cami's father-in-law, Johnny Biello, a ... Read full review

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Great story. Written well. Love to see in made into a movie

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About the author (2012)

The son of a steel worker, JOHN JOHNSON, JR. attended Whittier College and UC Riverside. An award winning journalist, Johnson has worked for The Los Angeles Times for twenty-two years.

JOEL SELVIN, co-author of the #1 bestseller Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock with Sammy Hagar, has covered pop music for the San Francisco Chronicle since 1970 and written 10 other books about pop music including the bestselling account of San Francisco in the '60s, Summer of Love, an award-winning biography of Ricky Nelson and a landmark oral history on Sly and the Family Stone.

Both reside in California.

Raised in a musical family in the Bronx, DICK CAMI married the daughter of Mafia kingpin Johnny Biello, owner of the famed Peppermint Lounge. Cami later was an acclaimed restaurateur in South Florida, where he entertained high-ranking mafiosi, FBI agents, athletes and show business celebrities.

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