Tiffany was just 13 years old when she started recording with producer George Tobin, who met her a year earlier and was impressed with her talent. Tobin, who owned his own studio in Los Angeles, had produced Kim Carnes ("More Love
") and Smokey Robinson ("Being With You
"). He couldn't find an appropriate manager for Tiffany, so he handled the business side of her affairs after signing her to a production deal.
Finding good, original songs is hard for an unknown singer, since the top songwriters want to place their cuts with established acts, so Tobin looked for cover songs for Tiffany, and came up with "I Think We're Alone Now," which she wasn't thrilled with but recorded anyway. Tobin then shopped her to record companies, and after being turned down by Clive Davis and about a dozen others, found a taker in Steve Moir at MCA Records. Unfortunately, Moir left MCA soon after, and the company gave Tiffany little support. It became clear that she wasn't going to succeed through traditional means, so Tobin went to the MCA "special projects" division and hatched an idea: the mall tour.
Starting in Paramus, New Jersey, the 16-year-old Tiffany toured shopping malls, singing for free to whoever would listen. It was a novel approach, and it worked very well, especially when media outlets covered the story of this teenager who sang for shoppers. The mall crowd (young girls) was a great fit for Tiffany, who found a way to reach this audience long before there was Twitter.