The Flat Tops Hall of Fame
Tom Fritschi our good friend and bandmate of the FT band left us in 2015 to move to Florida
with his wife Sandi.
We will miss him, having been a excellent member of the group since November of 2010.
He has been a rock steady guitarist and vocalist and his presence will be sorely missed
and not forgotten.
In 1990 Tom joined“Route 66” as rhythm guitarist, and the band was one of the nominees that year in the Buffalo Music Awards for classic rock group. Some months later, the other band members decided to replace the rhythm guitar with a keyboardist, and Tom was again available.
In the summer of 1991, Tom hooked up with a Niagara county southern rock band called “Phoenix” featuring vocalist John Clyde. That September“Phoenix” was the opening act for the Jeff Healey Band in Niagara Falls. After six months, John left the band and was replaced with Billy “Gator” Edmonds, formerly of the band “Southern Cross”. With Billy now in the band they adopted his old band name and played out as “Southern Cross”.
When “Southern Cross” broke up in the fall of 1993, Tom joined a North Tonawanda oldies band fronted by lead singer Dennis MaGuire of Niagara Falls, and performed as “Dennis D. and the Diamonds”. When Dennis decided to do a solo act with recorded music, he left the band, and was replaced by newcomer Tommy Pantone who added his Elvis impersonation act to the band. The band name was changed to “The Diamond Show Band” and they debuted at Salvatore’s Italian Garden in September 1994.
“The Diamond Show Band” played out for about two and a half years at various nightclubs, lounges, and private functions doing a mixture of oldies, rock, lounge, Elvis, Orbison, and Neil Diamond, and gained a good following. In November 1996 the band changed its name to “The Nite Tones” to avoid confusion with other acts with similar names. The “Nite Tones” recorded a demo CD of live music in late 1998, and continued until finally disbanding in 2000.
For the last 10 years Tom has been a member of various bands including “Rock-It”, “The British Invasion” and “Mr. Max”, before he joined “The Flat Tops”.
Musical influences: The Ventures, Beatles, Chuck Berry, Beach Boys, CCR.