Jeff Barry
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Chronology, Page Two

Neil Diamond, Jeff, Ellie, Bert Berns

Barry writes, produces and sings the title song to a United Artists movie, Where It's At.  It is released as a single.  He also writes and sings the theme song to Hello Down There, a comedy film starring Tony Randall, Janet Leigh and Richard Dreyfuss.  Three additional Barry numbers are performed in the film by Harold and The Hang-Ups (one, "I Can Love You," will be Robin McNamara's debut single).  Deep Purple revives "River-Deep, Mountain-High."  The Beach Boys score with a revival of "I Can Hear Music."  Sharing vocals with Toni Wine, Ron Dante scores a massive international hit with the Barry-Kim song, "Sugar, Sugar."  It tops the charts in Mexico, Spain, Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, England and the United States, and is chosen RIAA Record of The Year.  The follow-up single "Jingle Jangle" wins another Gold Record for the Archies studio group.  It replaces Don Kirshner's original follow-up choice, "Get On The Line," a fusion of funky R & B and gospel.  Instead, this song is showcased on a Saturday afternoon Archie TV special.  New Steed act The Illusion charts with Barry-penned "Did You See Her Eyes," and "How Does It Feel?" and self-composed "Together."  The band and its recordings will win an avid cult following.  Andy Kim's hitmaking streak continues on Steed with "Tricia, Tell Your Daddy," "So Good Together" and "Baby, I Love You."  The latter tune, a revival of the 1963 Ronettes hit, benefits from  Barry's unique Third World rhythm arrangement.  It wins yet another Gold Record for him.  Barry cuts his first sessions with Bobby Bloom, which yield "Sign Of The V," one of his favorite productions.  The single is released on Earth Records, a label owned by Joey Levine and Barry's former songwriting partner, Artie Resnick.  He also begins cutting tracks with Robin McNamara, a lead actor in the Broadway musical Hair.  Backing vocalists on the McNamara sessions are other Hair castmembers, including former Crystals lead singer La La Brooks.
Barry records an Andy Kim album cut, "Mr. Music Man."  It is released on Ranwood Records under bogus group name, The Mission.  He bankrolls an off-Broadway musical, The Dirtiest Show In Town, and co-writes the score with Andy Kim.  The Archies maintain their presence on radio and pop charts with "Who's Your Baby?" and the Afro-Cuban-flavored "Sunshine."  The latter song features Bobby Bloom on percussion and backing vocals.  Wilson Pickett's cover of "Sugar, Sugar" meets enthusiastic response in both R & B and pop markets.  Robin McNamara breaks out on Steed with "Lay A Little Lovin' On Me," co-written with Barry.  His follow-up hit, "Got To Believe In Love" is written by Barry protégé Neil Goldberg, who pens the lion's share of songs for the 1970-71 season of Archie.  Don Kirshner assigns Barry music production duties for The Globetrotters, a new Hanna-Barbera cartoon series.  Barry chooses singer/songwriters JR Bailey, Rudy Clark and Kenny Williams to handle lead vocals.  A single from the sessions, the Neil Sedaka-penned "Rainy Day Bells," will become an enduring hit on the southern US "beach music" circuit.  The Monkees avail themselves of Barry's services again for a hard-rocking single, "Oh, My My," and an album, Changes.  Andy Kim successfully revives "Be My Baby."  He also charts with "A Friend In The City" and a continuation of Barry's experiments with funk, "It's Your Life."  Ron Dante debuts as a solo artist with his Barry-produced album and single, "Let Me Bring You Up." The song is one of Barry and Kim's finest compositions, and like "Sunshine," it boasts a heavy Caribbean flavor.   Barry contracts with the Ringling Brothers-Barnum and Bailey organization to produce a harlequin-costumed group, The Klowns.  Barry Bostwick, soon to star on Broadway in Grease, is the lead singer.  The Klowns chart a single, "Lady Love," written by Barry protégés Mike and Steve Soles.  The Illusion charts its final single, "Let's Make Each Other Happy."  Bobby Bloom is established as a pop singer with the Top Ten hit "Montego Bay," co-written with Barry and based on both men's experiences vacationing (separately) in Jamaica.  The song also scores in England for Bloom and for UK artist Freddie Notes.  Barry's collaborations with Bloom are his most Caribbean-influenced to date, and his Bobby Bloom album is an artistic triumph.  The team also demonstrates gospel affinity with the album cut "Heavy Makes You Happy."   It later becomes a breakthrough pop hit for The Staple Singers.  Bang Records reactivates its Neil Diamond catalog, charting over the next twelve months with the Barry-Greenwich productions "Shilo," "Solitary Man," "Do It," and a remix of Diamond's original recording of "I'm A Believer."  Barry produces album tracks for a new Bang artist, Paul Davis.  A revival of "River-Deep, Mountain-High," produced by Ashford and Simpson and sung by The Supremes with The Four Tops is a major R & B crossover smash. Barry protégés Neil Goldberg, Steve Soles and Ned Albright produce singer/songwriter Cheryl Dilcher, Hair castmember Susan Morse, The Archies and other acts under the auspices of Jeff Barry Enterprises.   In its year-end issue, Billboard Magazine names Jeff Barry the music industry's second most successful producer.  Paramount Pictures takes over distribution of Steed Records.  He accepts an offer to work for Paramount in Hollywood.
Atlantic Records executive Jerry Wexler arranges for Barry to produce British pop star Dusty Springfield.  They cut an album, but it is not released.  However, a Barry-composed single from the sessions, "Haunted," becomes a regional hit in Boston and a cult favorite in England.  The Andy Kim juggernaut finally slows with his last Steed chart singles, "I Wish I Were" and "I Been Moved."  Barry's distribution deal ends, and he shuts down Steed Records; the final release is Robin McNamara's "Mary, Janey And Me."  In the US, "Together We Two" is the final Archies chart single, but a year-old Archies album track, "A Summer Prayer For Peace," tops the South African charts.  Barry and Ron Dante share vocals on it.  Bobby Bloom follows up "Montego Bay" with "Make Me Happy," "We're All Goin' Home," and "We Need Each Other," Barry's funkiest productions yet.  Barry produces Micky Dolenz and Davy Jones for Bell Records, singing a Bloom-Goldberg composition, "Do It In The Name Of Love."  It fails commercially, but will become a much sought-after collectible.  Recording for Bell himself, Barry cuts his most appealing single yet, "Sweet Savior."  Cissy Houston revives "Be My Baby" for the R & B market.  Jonathan King revives "Sugar, Sugar" in the UK.  Barry withdraws from all East Coast commitments, sells his Long Island home, and relocates to southern California. 
Ian Matthews revives "Da Doo Ron Ron."  British girl group The Seashells revives "Maybe I Know."  Jody Miller scores Barry's first country hit with a revival of "Be My Baby."  Barry leaves Paramount to freelance again.  He produces a charting album for Sha-Na-Na.  At the invitation of Herb Alpert, he joins the A & R staff of A & M Records.  His artists include Robin and Jo McNamara, Nino Tempo and April Stevens, Rosey Grier, King Harvest, Cheryl Dilcher, Ray Kennedy, ex-Righteous Brother Bill Medley, singer/songwriter Paul Williams, and a cappella vocal group The Persuasions.  Barry writes and produces the Nino Tempo hit "Sister James."  He produces a pair of Tempo/Stevens hits, "Put It Where You Want It" and "Who Turns Me On?"  He writes (with Bobby Bloom) and produces The Persuasions' biggest hit single "I Really Got It Bad For You."  The Persuasions album I Just Want To Sing With My Friends ranks among his best work.  An aborted album collaboration with Peter Allen yields the Olivia Newton-John chart-topper "I Honestly Love You," his most lucrative copyright, and a Helen Reddy track, "I've Been Wanting You So Long."  He cuts Walkin' In The Sun for A & M, a second solo album destined to remain unreleased; it is a highly personal collection of self-penned rock, country and blues ballads with unconventional vocals.  April Stevens scores a hit with "Wake Up And Love Me," an unusually suggestive Jeff Barry composition and production (it began life as a Nino Tempo instrumental called "Safari").  Ellie Greenwich cuts a second album of her own, Let It Be Written, Let It Be Sung, comprised mostly of old Barry-Greenwich songs.  Bette Midler revives "Chapel Of Love," "Da Doo Ron Ron" and "Leader Of The Pack" in her concert act, and records successful cover versions.  Dave Edmunds revives "Baby, I Love You" in England.  Reissued Crystals and Shangri-Las versions of "Da Doo Ron Ron" and "Leader Of The Pack" chart in England.  Bobby Bloom's final US chart record is a revival of "Heavy Makes You Happy," already a hit in England.  Bloom's death the following year of an accidental shooting grieves Barry profoundly.  Ronettes lead singer Ronnie Spector recuts the unreleased Barry-Greenwich-Spector tune, "I Wish I Never Saw The Sunshine" for Buddah Records.  Johnny T. Angel revives "Tell Laura I Love Her."  Queen's Freddie Mercury, recording as Larry Lurex, revives "I Can Hear Music."  Barry leaves A & M to set up offices for his own music production company.  He produces French vocalist Joe Dassin for Epic, disco duo Freeman-Nehls and session singer Polly Cutter for RCA Victor and writes theme songs for the Norman Lear TV comedies The Jeffersons and One Day At A Time, and for Don Kirshner's Rock Concert.  Gary Stewart gives Barry his second country chart hit, "Out Of Hand."  He briefly reunites with Phil Spector to write material for novice singer Jerri Bo Keno and to participate in Spector-produced album sessions for his one-time idol, Dion.  Spector also produces John Lennon singing "Be My Baby" and Cher singing an extended version of "Baby, I Love You."  These recordings quickly become collector's item rarities.

Barry pens a single for Dion, "Baby, Let's Stick Together."  He discovers future actress and country star Lisa Hartman-Black, and produces her debut album for Kirshner Records.  The Lisa Hartman album contains two songs, "He Ain't You," and "Sayin' Hello, Sayin' I Love You, Sayin' Goodbye" which become major country hits when recorded by Lynn Anderson and the Jim Ed Brown/Helen Cornelius duo.  Barry pens a successful follow-up for Brown and Cornelius, "If It Ain't Love By Now."  Neil Diamond buys out Barry and Greenwich's shares in Tallyrand Music.  With full legal rights to the hits they produced for him, Diamond releases his  Classics compilation, which becomes an enduring best-seller.  Shaun Cassidy hits #1 with a remake of "Da Doo Ron Ron," and a reissued "I Honestly Love You" charts again for Olivia Newton-John.  It becomes her signature song, and she will successfully re-record it in the '90s.  The Staple Singers chart with an R & B version.  Barry produces an album for a now solo Tommy James.  The album, Midnight Rider, features "Bobby, Don't Leave Me Alone Tonight," his song tribute to Bobby Bloom.  He successfully revives the Nino Tempo/April Stevens oldie "All Strung Out" with actor John Travolta on vocals.  Travolta's second album is a Jeff Barry production, and it yields the follow-up hit "(Feels So Good) Slow Dancin'," penned by Paul Jabara.  Barry produces the debut album of a Van Halen-styed band, Chopper.  '60s cult star Gene Pitney cuts "Walkin' In The Sun" for a comeback attempt on Epic Records.  Jody Miller revives "Lay A Little Lovin' On Me" for the country market.  UK group Sugar Cane revives "Montego Bay."
Barry scores, writes and produces music for the soundtrack of the M-G-M/United Artists film The Idolmaker, a fictionalized biography of rock impresario Bob Marcucci.  Featured artists include Darlene Love, Nino Tempo, Peter Gallagher, Sweet Inspirations, actors Colleen Ann Fitzpatrick and Ray Sharkey and singer/songwriter Jesse Frederick.  A Jesse Frederick single, "Here Is My Love," is taken from the movie and charts after actor Paul Land lip-syncs it on American Bandstand.  A Monkees EP disk featuring the Barry productions "I'm A Believer" and "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You" becomes a British best-seller, as does Phil Spector's production of The Ramones singing "Baby, I Love You."  Collaborating with '60s contemporaries Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, Barry writes "The Last Time I Made Love," a huge R & B and pop platter for Joyce Kennedy/Jeffrey Osborne.  He writes a hugely successful country single, "Lie To You For Your Love," for The Bellamy Brothers.  Johnny Mathis and Deneice Williams record "Without Us," the Barry-penned theme song for a popular TV sitcom, Family Ties, starring Michael J. Fox.  Gary Glitter revives "Then He Kissed Me" in England.  A video documentary and companion book titled Girl Groups revives interest in the '60s girl group sound and in classic Barry-Greenwich songs.  Those and other Barry compositions and productions are increasingly featured in hit movies such as Dirty Dancing, and in TV and radio jingles for various products.  Leader Of The Pack, a musical revue featuring those songs, does SRO business at New York nightclub The Bottom Line.  On April 8, 1985, a retooled version opens on Broadway at the Ambassador Theater for a five-month run.  Critics pan the show, but it is nominated for a Tony award and will become a regional theater favorite.  The musical stars Ellie Greenwich and Darlene Love, who cuts a definitive version of "River-Deep, Mountain-High" for the cast album.  Twisted Sister revives "Leader Of The Pack."  Charly Records UK releases The Red-Bird Story, a multidisc set featuring all Barry-Greenwich hits from Red-Bird Records.  The Archies' "Sugar, Sugar" is revived as a British dance club favorite.  British girl band Amazulu revives "Montego Bay."  Eddie Money scores his biggest hit single with "Take Me Home Tonight," a song which incorporates "Be My Baby;" Ronnie Spector contributes a cameo vocal.  UK group Joan Collins Fan Club revives "Leader Of The Pack."  Darlene Love's performance of "Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home)" becomes a yuletide tradition on the popular David Letterman talk show.  Jeff Barry writes a theme song for the Miss World beauty pageant.
Glen Campbell garners widespread country airplay with "Walkin' In The Sun," available only on his album of the same title.  Jeff Barry songs continue to be featured in popular films including such blockbusters as Forrest Gump, Four Weddings And A Funeral, The Bridges Of Madison County and What's Love Got To Do With It? Phil Spector box set compilation Back To Mono, mostly comprised of Barry-Greenwich songs, is released.  It will win a Gold Record.  Barry serves a term as President of the National Academy of Songwriters, and wins its Lifetime Achievement Award.  He and Ellie Greenwich are inducted into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame on May 29, 1991.  He launches a multimedia entertainment company, Big Kids, in collaboration with businessman Richard Goldsmith.  Barry and Goldsmith produce several children's music albums, as well as the debut album of boy band N/Motion.  They also serve as executive producers of a Warner Brothers holiday film, Jack Frost, starring Michael Keaton.  A Japanese company, A-Side Records, releases the first-ever Barry-Greenwich songbook collection.  PolyGram Music Publishing purchases the rights to nearly all songs in the Barry-Greenwich song catalog in 1997.  A much-sought-after promotional CD, I Can Hear Music, is released.  It features original and new performances of Barry and Greenwich standards.  Barry begins performing his hits in nightclubs and other small venues.  On May 14, 1999, he headlines a sold-out benefit performance in Santa Barbara, California.   This is his highest-profile public performance to date; he is backed by members of the Don Henley band.  Leiber and Stoller, songwriters Paul Williams, Norman Gimbel and a host of music industry notables attend.. 
Song licensing organization BMI cites eight Jeff Barry songs, "Doo-Wah-Diddy," "Then He Kissed Me," "Be My Baby," "Da Doo Ron Ron," "Hanky Panky," "Leader Of The Pack," "Sugar, Sugar" and "I Honestly Love You" among the most performed songs of the 20th century.  An all-star concert tribute to Barry, Chapel Of Love, is staged at the Granada Theater in Santa Barbara.  Participating artists include Brian Wilson, Ron Dante, Andy Kim, Ronnie Spector, Jeffrey Osborne, Deneice Williams, Mary Wilson (of Diana Ross and The Supremes), The Dixie Cups, Ray Peterson, and The Crystals.  Barry himself conducts the orchestra and serves as music director.  The concert is filmed, and is later telecast on selected PBS-TV stations; a video/DVD is marketed, along with a soundtrack CD.  A petition drive is launched to induct Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Rap star Nelly incorporates "Movin' On Up," theme song from The Jeffersons, into his radio/video hit "Batter Up."  Two years later, fledgling rapper B-Rich samples it heavily for use in his hip-hop charter,"Whoa Now."  "Hitmakers," a cable TV special, showcases Barry and other Brill Building songwriters.  A new Jeff Barry-penned musical, Knight Life, opens in Santa Barbara.

And the story continues . . .

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