This one’s from the “before they were famous” file.
Many of these forgotten one-hit wonders profiled here have some things in common – they’re frequently studio projects, and they usually feature people that we’ve either heard from before or would become stars in the future. In the case of today’s featured song, the people we’d heard from before were songwriters Joey Levine and Bo Gentry. Levine was the lead singer on “Yummy Yummy Yummy” and other songs from Ohio Express, and Bo Gentry co-wrote 1910 Fruitgum Company’s “Indian Giver.” We still hear Levine’s work today, as he’s written many commercial jingles since the early 70’s. Rap fans: think Busta Rhymes can spit lots of words per minute? Listen to Joey Levine rattle off the history of pop music in 1974’s “Life Is A Rock (But The Radio Rolled Me).” Oh, he’s no relation to Maroon 5’s Adam Levine. I checked.
If you’ve ever wondered what the bubblegum music of Buddah Records might have sounded like when it grew up, this song may be your answer. Not much information is available on Wind, which was a one-off studio project, but not surprisingly, the song shows a clear Ohio Express/1910 Fruitgum Co. influence – bubblegum for grownups. I can hear some Four Seasons in there, too. “Make Believe” got to #28 in the fall of 1969; let’s listen to it now:
Nice song, and that lead singer looks and sounds awfully familiar. Wait…wait…I know…it’s…who? You’re kidding!
Yep, it’s Tony Orlando, just before Dawn. We would definitely be hearing from him again.
Come back next time as we profile another forgotten oldie that’ll make you say “oh, wow!” Unless, of course, it makes you say “oh, no!”