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The Cuff Links were not an actual group - the record was performed entirely by Ron Dante, who provided the lead vocal of the Archies' "Sugar, Sugar
" (another fictional group). His vocals were recorded 15 times over to make it sound like a big group was singing. Dante says that all the vocal tracks were done in about two hours.
At one point, Dante had two records in the US Top 10 (both by fictional groups), but was precluded by contract from disclosing that it was he who sang "Sugar Sugar" and "Tracy."
This was written by the songwriting team of Lee Pockriss and Paul Vance, who wrote the #1 novelty hit "Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini
." The whole Cuff Links project was their brainchild. They also wrote the follow-up singles (also containing girls' names) "When Julie Comes Around" (#41) and "Run Sally Run" (#76), as well as "Leader Of The Laundromat," a parody of "Leader of the Pack
" credited to The Detergents, which was another Ron Dante-fronted act.
This was featured in the 1998 "Theme of Life" episode of the TV show Ally McBeal as the theme music for Dr. Tracy Clark, who was played by Tracey Ullman. Dr. Clark is Ally's therapist, and recommends that she adopt a theme song of her own - Ally picks "Tell Him
" by The Exciters.
Paul Vance liked to use girls' names as a starting point for song ideas, and he was the one who came up with "Tracy" for the title. Lee Pockriss did the orchestration on the track, and the pair convinced Ron Dante to sing it. According to Pockriss, they shopped the song to 17 different record companies before Decca finally took it. Their label head, Jack Weidenman, came up with "The Cuff Links" as the name for the group.
Mike Love of The Beach Boys
The lead singer/lyricist of The Beach Boys talks about coming up with the words for "Good Vibrations," "Fun, Fun, Fun," "Kokomo" and other classic songs.
Kerry Livgren of Kansas
In this talk from the '80s, the Kansas frontman talks turning to God and writing "Dust In The Wind."
The only Irishman to play at Woodstock (backing Joe Cocker), Henry was an early member of Paul McCartney's band Wings.
You may not recognize his name, but you will certainly recognize Peter Lord's songs. He wrote the bevy of hits from Paula Abdul's second album, Spellbound
, plus a collection of other classics for the likes of Aftershock, Ali and Goodfellaz.