Q. Canadian born singer songwriter Andy Kim had a mega hit on both sides of the Atlantic in 1974 with the song ‘Rock Me Gently’. His biggest hit however was a song he wrote for another band years earlier. The song was the ‘Billboard single of the year’ in 1969 and also spent eight weeks at number 1 in the UK charts. Can you name the tasty ditty?
A. “Sugar, Sugar” by the Archies was produced by Jeff Barry, and the song was originally released on the album Everything’s Archie. The album is the product of a group of studio musicians managed by Don Kirshner. Ron Dante’s lead vocals were accompanied by those of Toni Wine (who sang the line “I’m gonna make your life so sweet”), and Andy Kim. Together they provided the voices of the Archies using multitracking.
Upon its initial release, Kirshner had promotion men play it for radio station execs without telling them the name of the group (due to the disappointing chart performance of the Archies’ previous single, “Feelin’ So Good (S.k.o.o.b.y-D.o.o.)”, which only went to number 53 on theBillboard Hot 100 charts). Only after most of the DJs liked the song were they told that it was performed by a cartoon group. The Archies’ hit wound up as one of the biggest (and most unexpected) number-one hits of the year, one of the biggest bubblegum hits of all time, in America thanks partly to association with the hit CBS-TV Saturday morning cartoon series.
“Sugar, Sugar” is also considered to be the most produced recording ever after the breakfast cereal company Post Cereal placed millions of the records on the back of their Super Sugar Crisp cereal boxes.
In 2014, “Sugar, Sugar” was used in the documentary Fed Up during a montage demonstrating the correlation between the large qualities of sugar in processed foods and obesity in the United States.
Some of the artists who have covered this song include: Ike and Tina Turner, Tom Jones, and Bob Marley. Andy Kim recorded his own version in 1980 under the name “Baron Longfellow.”