05 July 2018

The 100% Real Archies Sessionography, 1968-2008



THE ARCHIES REVEALED!!!
New York City's Greatest Contribution 
to Rock and Soul Music
by DC Hampton Jacobs

Unlike the Great American Songbook that preceded it, the Great American Rock 'n' Roll Songbook isn't just about singers, songs and songwriters.  It's also about the scores of fine musicians, amateur and professional, who brought exceptional Rock 'n' Roll compositions to life on records.  Without their essential contributions, the greatness of many if not most Rock songs would be muted!  Today's technology notwithstanding, sixties Rock 'n' Roll isn't the kind of music you can adequately play on just one instrument.  It wants a band!  It needs sending with a Big Beat: A group of musicians sparking off each other and getting a groove together.  And nobody, but nobody could get a groove going better than '60s session players.

Hollywood had its Wrecking Crew:  Hal Blaine and his associates, recently celebrated in a hit movie documentary.  Nashville had its Music City regulars:  Floyd Cramer, Boots Randolph and the rest.  Memphis had both its Stax and American Group house bands.  Muscle Shoals had its Dixie Flyers.  Chicago had its Windy City Soul music men.  Philadelphia had the Mother-Father-Sister-Brother (MFSB) band.  But what about the Big Apple?

New York City had the best of the best:
The Archies!!!

No, not the fictional cartoon band that held forth on Saturday morning television in the late '60s and early '70s.  That was just a marketing device. I'm talking about the real Archies: A rotating group of flesh-and-blood session cats who coalesced around producer Jeff Barry.  Their heyday was the mid-to-late 1960s.  These are the musicians you hear on 1969's international chart-topper "Sugar, Sugar", but they didn't just appear on Archies records.  You could build quite an impressive record collection off their catalog.

They accompanied the fabulous Dusty Springfield on what is now believed to be her finest album:  1971's Faithful, not properly released until 2016.  They backed The Ronettes on their original version of "I Can Hear Music."  You hear them supporting The Monkees on their back-to-back smashes "I'm A Believer" and "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You."  They rocked you to your socks on Neil Diamond's "Cherry, Cherry" and the rest of his Bang Records output.  If you're lucky enough to own any of three delectable solo singles by Jo Mama's lead singer Gayle Haness, it's The Archies providing background music for "Johnny Ander", "When Your Baby Says Goodbye" and "I've Never Gotten Over You".  Get the benefit of their ass-kickin' style on Tony Pass's 1966 beat ballad "True, True Love", Paul Davis' 1971 single "I Feel Better" and Sha-Na-Na's excellent The Night Is Still Young album from 1972.  And you don't dare miss one their finest outings: Ron Dante's sizzling 1970 solo single "Let Me Bring You Up".

Jeff Barry's Steed label (in operation from 1967 to 1971) was practically home base for The Archies.  You can sample their soulfulness on 45 and LP releases by Robin McNamara ("Lay A Little Lovin' On Me"), The Rich Kids ("You Made Me A Man"), The Playhouse ("C'mon And Ride"), Hank Shifter ("Saturday Noontime"), Louis St. Louis with Jacqueline Carol ("One Time For Love") and Andy Kim ("How'd We Ever Get This Way" and more).  Their chunky brand of electrified Funk also powered records co-produced/written by Jeff Barry and Bert Berns:  Freddie Scott's "Am I Groovin' You?", The Exciters' "Soul Motion", Jack Ely + The Courtmen's "Ride, Ride, Baby", The McCoys' "I Got To Go Back (Watch That Little Girl Dance)" and The Drifters' infectious tribute to the Soul Queen, "Aretha".

Jeff Barry associate Dean Christopher used them on Joyce Webb's single "I Don't Want Nobody If I Can't Have You", The Neil Ford Factory's "I've Got To Find Me A Woman" and The Mission's "Mister Music Man".  And wasn't it The Archies that featured on Bobby Bloom's fondly-remembered slice of Caribbean reverie "Montego Bay"?  No, it wasn't.  That particular recording was performed in its entirety by Jeff Barry and Bobby Bloom; but you do get their signature sound on follow-up Bloom singles like the UK hit "Heavy Makes You Happy" and "We're All Goin' Home".

DON KIRSHNER


DON KIRSHNER
Executive Producer for THE ARCHIES

When music publisher Don Kirshner cut a deal with Archie Comics in late 1967 to bring their characters to life on vinyl, the stage was finally set for these superb studio musicians to take center stage.  With top session vocalists Ron Dante and Toni Wine out front, the newly-named Archies strutted their stuff on five charting albums and seven chart singles, including that aforementioned Number One platter . . . and that's just in the United States.  "Sugar, Sugar" also topped charts in Austria, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Spain and the United Kingdom!  Jeff Barry later tapped The Archies for TV soundtrack albums he cut for The Harlem Globetrotters and The Klowns, both released in 1970 and both highly collectible today.

Because of the prominence of Jewish musicians in their ranks, session contractor Artie Kaplan nicknamed The Archies "the Jews of Rhythm and Blues!"  Their rich East Coast ethnic mix (Jews, Italians, Greeks, Polish, Irish, Spanish, Afro-Americans and more) was a feature that distinguished them from session groups in Hollywood, Nashville, Memphis, Muscle Shoals, Chicago and Philly.  Even richer was the always-commercial appeal of the potent Rock and Soul sounds they delivered on date after date.  Jeff Barry depended on it!  So did other notable record producers like Bob Crewe, Chip Taylor, George "Shadow" Morton and the aforementioned Bert Berns.

Over the years, many asinine music reviews have been written by critics who were preoccupied with The Archies' comic book image.  Forget about them.  Forget everything you've ever heard about a band that was "fake", "manufactured" and a "cynical corporate creation".  It's unfair to apply such descriptions to The Archies.  Their cartoon tie-in was an obvious promotional gimmick, not a Milli Vanilli-style deception.  They were serious musicians and deeply creative individuals with talents so stellar, they were coveted by Pop legends from Van Morrison to Ella Fitzgerald, Aretha Franklin, BB King, Laura Nyro, James Taylor, Peggy Lee and John Lennon.  Artie Kaplan calls them "as contemporary as tomorrow", and he's absolutely right.  The music they made will last forever!  That music, along with their names, is documented for the first time.  There's nothing imaginary about this session log: Everything posted here is true, actual and 100% satisfactual!


RON DANTE
Lead Singer for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged by DEAN CHRISTOPHER*
Produced by JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN, GUS MOSSLER
and FRED "Paco" WEINBERG
Recorded at RCA Studio A (vocals)
and A & R Studios (backing tracks)
New York City
July 1968**

WYB1-1077
Everything's Archie
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 1078
unreleased

WYB1- 1079
unreleased

WYB1- 1080
unreleased

WYB1- 1081
Love Light
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 1082
You Little Angel, You
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 1083
Truck Driver
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 1084
(Ain't No Doubt About It) I'm In Love
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 1085
Seventeen Ain't Young
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 1086
Boys And Girls
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1-1087
Bang-Shang-A-Lang
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 1088
Catchin' Up On Fun
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)
This song was covered by The Love Generation,
a group led by brothers JOHN and TOM BAHLER
which evolved into the studio group that 
recorded The Partridge Family's
hits.

WYB1- 1089
Circle Of Blue
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

WYB1- 1090
Hide And Seek
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

WYB1- 1091
Ride! Ride! Ride!
(Jeff Barry)

*DEAN CHRISTOPHER was JEFF BARRY's primary musical arranger
from 1967-71.  Jeff was married to his sister NANCY CALCAGNO,
during the same time period.

DEAN CHRISTOPHER AKA DINO CALAGNO

DEAN CHRISTOPHER
Arranger for THE ARCHIES


**RCA Victor (now part of Sony Music) was the distributor for Calendar Records, The Archies' record label. HERMAN DIAZ, JR. was a legendary music producer who headed RCA Victor's Latin music division. He produced HARRY BELAFONTE'S classic "Banana Boat Song" and all of PEREZ PRADO'S hits including "Mambo Number Five". When RCA executives assigned him A & R supervision over The Archies, it was a signal that they anticipated lots of commercial dance music from the group! They wouldn't be disappointed, either. Writer/producer JEFF BARRY, mentored by the legendary JERRY LEIBER and MIKE STOLLER, came to the Archies project after a string of smash hit songs and productions for The Monkees, NEIL DIAMOND and other acts. RON DANTE, formerly of The Detergents, was an ex-Screen Gems Music songwriter as well as an in-demand jingle singer and background vocalist. The late RITCHIE ADAMS (formerly of the '50s Doo-Wop group The Fireflies) and MARK BARKAN were veteran Brill Building songwriters; BARKAN penned most of LESLEY GORE'S big hits.


RON FRANGIPANE

RON FRANGIPANE
Arranger/Keyboard player for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged by DEAN CHRISTOPHER
Produced by JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN, GUS MOSSLER
and FRED "PACO" WEINBERG
Recorded at RCA Studio A (vocals)
and A & R Studios (backing tracks)
New York City
July 1968*

WYB1- 5711
Time For Love
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

WYB1- 5712
Hot Dog!
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

WYB1- 5713
Don't Touch My Guitar!
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 5714
Kissin'
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)
Built around the lullaby "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" 
which dates back to the 1700s.

WYB1- 5715
La Dee Doo Down Down
(Jeff Barry)
cameo vocal by JEFF BARRY

WYB1- 5716
You Make Me Wanna Dance
(Jeff Barry)

WYB1- 5717
Rock 'n' Roll Music
(Jeff Barry)
cameo vocal by JEFF BARRY

*This session and the preceding one produced the soundtrack songs for the 1968-9 "Archie" cartoon series. That season featured "Bang-Shang-A-Lang" and "Truck Driver", both sides of the first Archies single. The majority of songs was issued on Calendar Records' 1968 album The Archies, while the remaining seven ("Love Light", "You Little Angel, You", "Circle Of Blue", "Hot Dog", "Don't Touch My Guitar", "Kissin'" and "Rock And Roll Music") appeared on its 1969 follow-up, Everything's Archie. Those album versions sometimes differed from the telecast versions, as would be the case with future releases. Also at these sessions, eighteen minute-long novelty dance numbers were recorded, written by either JEFF BARRY or RITCHIE ADAMS and MARK BARKAN. During the first season of “Archie,” these dances were used as preludes to the cartoon music videos. They were never issued on vinyl. An album demo exists containing fifteen of these unreleased songs in monaural mixes:

TYB1-1077-K-1
Do The Hamburber Hop
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

Do The Veronica Walk
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

Do The Banana Split
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

Do The Milk Shake
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

Do The Betty
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

Do The Fly Ball*
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

Do The Drag
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

Do The Touchdown
(Jeff Barry)

Do The Angel
(Jeff Barry)

Do The Grundy
(Jeff Barry)

Do The Surfer
(Jeff Barry)

Do The Stick Shift
(Jeff Barry)

Do The Rocket Ship
(Jeff Barry)

Do The Weatherbee
(Jeff Barry)

Do The Indian
(Jeff Barry)

*"Do The Fly Ball" was never broadcast on the TV series. 
Missing from this demo are "Do The Bubble Gum", "Do The 
Jughead" and "Do The Beanie", all JEFF BARRY compositions.


JEFF BARRY
Producer and Bass Singer for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio A
New York City
November 1968*

WYB1- 8073
Feelin' So Good (SKOOBY-DOO)
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
cameo vocal by JEFF BARRY
This song became a Northern Soul hit
for GENO WASHINGTON + The Ram Jam Band
in a 1972 cover version.

*Soundtrack recording for "The Archie Comedy Hour" (1969-70) began with this session. "Feelin' So Good" b/w "Love Light" was released as the second Archies single. Both songs appeared on the 1969 Calendar Records album Everything's Archie. ANDY KIM was a successful singer/songwriter whose first hits were cut for JEFF BARRY'S Steed record label.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio A
New York City
January 1969*

XYB1- 3906
Melody Hill
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)
backing vocal by RITCHIE ADAMS

XYB1- 3907
Bicycles, Roller Skates And You
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

XYB1- 3908
Sugar, Sugar
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
cameo vocal by TONI WINE
Successful cover versions of "Sugar, Sugar"
were recorded by WILSON PICKETT, UK group
Sakkarin, Reggae artist DUKE BAYSEE
and Latin rockers El Chicano.

*This session produced The Archies' blockbuster third single, "Sugar, Sugar" b/w "Melody Hill." According to songwriter MARK BARKAN, the famous "pour your sugar on me" line was added to "Sugar, Sugar" at a later session. Every song listed appeared on Calendar Records' 1969 album Everything's Archie. TONI WINE was a former Screen Gems Music songwriter and veteran session singer with "A Groovy Kind Of Love", "Candida" and numerous other hit compositions to her credit. Singing comedian RAY STEVENS added hand-clap percussion to "Sugar, Sugar".

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio A
New York City
Early 1969*

XYB1- 3949
Upside-Down, Inside-Out
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
backing vocal by TONI WINE

*"Upside-Down, Inside-Out" (also known as "Inside-Out, Upside-Down") 
appeared on the 1969 Calendar Records album Everything's Archie. 
It may have been slated for release as a single.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio B and C
New York City
Mid-1969*

XYB1- 3960
You Know I Love You
(Jeff Barry)
This song is somewhat similar to "But You Know I Love You", 
written by MIKE SETTLE and recorded the previous year by 
KENNY ROGERS + The First Edition

XYB1- 3961
Señorita Rita
(Jeff Barry)

XYB1- 3962
Whoopie-Tie-Ay-A
(Jeff Barry)

XYB1- 3963
Archie's Party
(Jeff Barry)
cameo vocal by TONI WINE

*By the time the material recorded at this and the next two sessions 
was released, DON KIRSHNER had changed the name of his record 
label from Calendar to Kirshner. Every song listed appeared on the 
1969 Kirshner Records album Jingle Jangle.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio B and C
New York City
Mid-1969*

XYB1- 4118
Get On The Line
(Jeff Barry)
cameo vocals by TONI WINE
and JEFF BARRY
This song was covered by Glam
Rock band The Sweet.

*"Get On The Line" was recorded for and featured on Filmation's Saturday afternoon TV special "Archie and His New Pals". It aired on 13 September 1969. This rousing choral rocker was originally slated to be the follow-up single to "Sugar, Sugar". Instead, it led off Side Two of the 1969 Kirshner Records album Jingle Jangle. The telecast version differs slightly from the album mix. A dynamite instrumental version surfaced in the 1970s, heard in the opening and closing credits of South American versions of the "The Archie Comedy Hour".


TONI WINE
Duet and Background Singer for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Recorded at RCA Studio B and C
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
New York City
Mid-1969*

XYB1- 4177
She's Putting Me Through Changes
(Ron Dante-Richard Kim Milford)

XYB1- 4178
Jingle Jangle
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
duet vocal by TONI WINE
cameo vocal by JEFF BARRY

XYB1- 4179
Everything's Alright
(Ron Dante)

XYB1- 4180
Sugar And Spice
(Gene Allan-Ron Dante)

XYB1- 4181
Look Before You Leap
(Gene Allan-Ron Dante)

XYB1-4182
unreleased

XYB1- 4183
Justine
(Jeff Barry)

XYB1- 4184
Nursery Rhyme
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
cameo vocal by TONI WINE
This is one of several known songs built around the 18th 
century nursery rhyme "Diddle-Diddle-Dumpling, My Son John". 
 Another is the 1961 Country hit "Sleepy-Eyed John" 
by JOHNNY HORTON.

*Soundtrack recording for "The Archie Comedy Hour" was completed at this session.  It was TONI WINE'S last with the group. This date also produced the first Archies single mixed to stereo, "Jingle Jangle" b/w "Justine". "Nursery Rhyme" b/w "You Little Angel, You" was released as a single in foreign territories; the telecast version of the former tune differs in its album mix. In 1987, "Sugar And Spice" would grace the flipside of a British dance remix of "Sugar, Sugar".  RON DANTE'S regular songwriting partner GENE ALLAN was, like him, a Screen Gems music veteran. The late RICHARD KIM MILFORD, co-writer of "She's Putting Me Through Changes", was the brother of actress PENELOPE MILFORD, Ron Dante's wife at the time. Every song listed appeared on the 1969 Kirshner Records album Jingle Jangle.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio B
New York City
January 26, 1970*

ZYB1- 4816
Who's Your Baby?
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
duet vocal by DONNA MARIE
cameo vocal by JEFF BARRY
backing vocals by BOBBY BLOOM,
LESLIE MILLER, SUSAN MORSE
and MAERETHA STEWART

*"Who's Your Baby?" was recorded for and featured on a prime time TV special called "The Archie/Sugar, Sugar/Jingle Jangle Show", which aired on 20 March 1970. Coupled with "Señorita Rita", it was also issued as The Archies' fifth single. The single and telecast versions differ slightly. RON DANTE reports that numerous takes of "Who's Your Baby?" exist; a stereo mix has never been released. The song appeared on the 1970 Kirshner Records album The Archies' Greatest Hits. DONNA MARIE had previously recorded singles for Columbia and Gateway Records. The late BOBBY BLOOM scored a massive hit with "Montego Bay"(produced by JEFF BARRY) and co-wrote "Mony Mony" with TOMMY JAMES. Background singer SUSAN MORSE was in the original Broadway cast of the rock musical Hair. Both LESLIE MILLER and MAERETHA STEWART were much-in-demand background vocalists of the 1960s and '70s.

Ron Dante
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio C
New York City
May 1970*

ZYB1- 5719
How Do You Know?
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)

ZYB1- 5720
Let Me Bring You Up
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)

*This session produced RON DANTE'S first solo single for the Kirshner label, mixed and released in monaural sound. Rare promo copies of "Let Me Bring You Up" b/w "How Do You Know?" feature a mix that differs from the commercial release. Both songs appeared in stereo on the 1970 
Kirshner Records album Ron Dante Brings You Up.

CHUCK RAINEY

CHUCK RAINEY
Bass player for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio C
New York City
May 1970*

ZYB1- 5745
Waldo P. Emerson-Jones
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
This song was covered by UK Pop
group Pickettywitch.

ZYB1- 5746
It's The Summertime
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)

ZYB1- 5747
A Summer Prayer For Peace
(Jeff Barry)
duet vocal by JEFF BARRY

ZYB1 - 5748
Sunshine
(Jeff Barry-Bobby Bloom)
cameo vocal by BOBBY BLOOM

Every song listed appeared on the 1970 Kirshner Records album Sunshine. This was the last session at which JEFF BARRY cut soundtrack material for the cartoon series. BOBBY BLOOM sings background and plays percussion (possibly piano as well). The single recorded at this session and the next, "Sunshine" b/w "Over And Over", was edited down to a shorter playing time and mixed to mono. Except for promo copies, it was the last Archies single released in monaural sound. In early 1971, another single would be pulled from this date: "A Summer Prayer For Peace", whose North-American flipside was the RITCHIE ADAMS/RON DANTE production "Maybe I'm Wrong." In South Africa and several Scandinavian countries, "Summer Prayer" was a chart-topper.


BOBBY BLOOM
Percussionist and Background Singer for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN and ART POLHEMUS
Recorded at The Hit Factory
New York City
May 1970*

ZYB1- 5775
Over And Over
(Jeff Barry-Ron Dante)

*"Over And Over" appeared on the 1970 Kirshner Records album Sunshine. 
JEFF BARRY was recording BOBBY BLOOM'S debut album at the Hit Factory around this time, and this Archies session may have been booked there for convenience's sake.



GARY CHESTER
Drummer for THE ARCHIES

Ron Dante
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio C
New York City
May/June 1970*

ZYB1- 5784
Lovin' Lady
(Ron Dante-Richard Kim Milford)

ZYB1- 5785
Sweet Taste Of Love
(Jamie Carr-Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5786
Go Where The Music Takes You
(Ron Dante-Howie Greenfield)

ZYB1- 5787
Games
(Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5788
A Million Voices
(Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5789
Muddy River Water
(Gene Allan-Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5790
Don't Let Love Pass You By
(Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5791
Jo Anna
(Ron Dante-Richard Kim Milford)

ZYB1- 5792
Mister Sun
(Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5793
C'mon, Girl
(Jamie Carr-Ron Dante)

*Occasional RON DANTE co-writers JAMIE CARR and HOWIE GREENFIELD were both former Screen Gems Music writers and associates of DON KIRSHNER. CARR was a singer/songwriter signed to Kirshner Records, and GREENFIELD was the lyricist for many Pop hits dating back to the 1950s. Most of the songs produced by JEFF BARRY for the Harlem Globetrotters (another Kirshner act) were HOWIE GREENFIELD/NEIL SEDAKA compositions. These RON DANTE sessions probably took place over the course of a week. At a later date, "C'mon, Girl" was overdubbed with a string and woodwind arrangement by RON FRANGIPANE. DANTE supervised the remixing, and the newly orchestrated track was issued as a single. Every song listed appeared on the 1970 Kirshner Records album Ron Dante Brings You Up. Recording information for his debut album appears in this sessionography because it overlapped with the recording of The Archies' Sunshine LP.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by 
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio C
New York City
June 1970*

ZYB1- 5902
Who's Gonna Love Me?
(Gene Allan-Jeff Barry-Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5903
Suddenly Susan
(Gene Allan-Jeff Barry-Ron Dante)

ZYB1- 5904
Love And Rock 'n' Roll Music
(Gene Allan-Jeff Barry-Ron Dante)

*In foreign territories, "Who's Gonna Love Me?" appeared as the flipside of the "Summer Prayer For Peace" single. Every song listed appeared on the 1970 Kirshner Records album Sunshine.


NEIL BRIAN GOLDBERG
Background Singer and Producer for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
A Jeff Barry Enterprises Production
Arranged by
NEIL BRIAN GOLDBERG
Produced by NEIL BRIAN GOLDBERG
and RON DANTE
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
VINCENT LEARY and MIKE MORAN
Recorded at Sound Ideas Studios
New York City
June 1970*

ZYB1- 5936
Mister Factory
(Nancy Calcagno-Neil Brian Goldberg)

ZYB1- 5937
Dance!
(Nancy Calcagno-Neil Brian Goldberg)

ZYB1- 5938
Comes The Sun
(Nancy Calcagno-Neil Brian Goldberg)

ZYB1- 5939
One Big Family
(Nancy Calcagno-Neil Brian Goldberg)

*Songs for "Archie's Funhouse", the 1970-71 edition of the cartoon series, were cut at this and subsequent summer sessions. Except for "Oh, Sweet Suzy", an update of the Stephen Foster classic "Oh! Suzannah", every title was arranged, produced and written by NEIL BRIAN GOLDBERG (although RON DANTE remembers doing the vocal arrangements).  GOLDBERG, a one-time Cameo-Parkway recording artist, was a staff songwriter and producer for JEFF BARRY'S Steed label. The remaining 28 tracks that he produced for The Archies have never been issued commercially, but all 32 can be heard on a DVD box set of "Archie's Funhouse" episodes released by Classic Media in 2008. For more in-depth information see my NEIL BRIAN GOLDBERG profile. Every song listed appeared on the 1970 Kirshner Records album Sunshine; the telecast version of "One Big Family" includes an instrumental break edited out of the album mix.


DONNA MARIE
Duet Singer for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Produced by
JEFF BARRY
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio C
New York City
August 1970*

ZYB1- 5968
Together We Two
(Jeff Barry-Andy Kim)
duet vocal by DONNA MARIE
backing vocals by LESLIE MILLER,
MERLE MILLER and SUSAN MORSE

*This was the final Archies recording session produced by JEFF BARRY, as well as DONNA MARIE'S last recording with the group. "Together We Two" b/w "Everything's Alright" was the last charting Archies single in the United States. "Together We Two" appeared on the 1971 Kirshner Records album This Is Love. Background singer MERLE MILLER would later become a founding member of BETTE MIDLER'S background vocal group The Harlettes.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
with LESLIE MILLER, MERLE MILLER
and SUSAN MORSE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Conducted by
RITCHIE ADAMS
Produced by
RITCHIE ADAMS and RON DANTE
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio C
New York City
Late 1970*

ZYB1- 6465
Don't Need No Bad Girl!
(Ritchie Adams-Alan Lee Gordon)

ZYB1- 6466
Maybe I'm Wrong
(Ritchie Adams)

ZYB1- 6467
Easy Guy
(Ritchie Adams-Bob Levine)

ZYB1- 6468
What Goes On?
(Ritchie Adams-Alan Lee Gordon)

ZYB1- 6469
Should Anybody Ask
(Ritchie Adams-Bob Levine)

ZYB1- 6470
Throw A Little Love My Way
(Gene Allan-Ron Dante)
cameo vocal by MERLE MILLER

ZYB1- 6471
Carousel Man
(Ron Dante-Rob Gengo)

ZYB1- 6472
Hold On To Lovin'
(Gene Allan-Ron Dante)

*Every song listed appeared on the 1971 Kirshner Records album This Is Love. The late ALAN LEE GORDON co-wrote the Rock 'n' Roll standard "Happy Together" as well as other hits with his regular writing partner GARY BONNER. BOB LEVINE was a sometime member of the Super K stable of Bubblegum Rock writers; he recorded a single for Mercury Records called "Bad Girl". ROB GENGO later co-wrote material for the 1975 cult album Spider Man: Rock Reflections of a Super Hero.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
with LESLIE MILLER, MERLE MILLER
and SUSAN MORSE
A & R Supervision for RCA Victor by
HERMAN DIAZ, JR.
Arranged and Conducted by
RITCHIE ADAMS
Produced by
RITCHIE ADAMS and RON DANTE
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
MIKE MORAN
Recorded at RCA Studio C
New York City
Early 1971*

AYB1- 4518
This Is Love
(Ritchie Adams-Bob Levine)
cameo vocal by Merle Miller

AYB1- 4519
This Is The Night
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

AYB1- 4520
Little Green Jacket
(Ritchie Adams-Mark Barkan)

*"This Is Love" b/w "Throw A Little Love My Way" was the eighth 
Archies single. The songs co-written by MARK BARKAN date from 1968 
and the earliest Archies recording sessions; JEFF BARRY-
produced versions may exist. Every song listed appeared on the 1971 Kirshner Records album This Is Love.

PHIL CODY

PHIL CODY
Songwriter (and lead singer?) for THE ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring BOB LEVINE???
Arranged and Conducted by
JOE RENZETTI???
Produced by
RITCHIE ADAMS
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Unknown engineer
Studio unknown
New York City
Mid-1971*

AYKM- 6117
Love Is Living In You
(Phil Cody-Bob Levine)

*There is no information for this Archies session in the RCA/Sony Music archives. It may not be a commercial record date at all, but a demo session whose product was issued as a finished master. For years, RITCHIE ADAMS was erroneously believed to be the lead singer.  Arranger JOE RENZETTI believes it was Neil Brian Goldberg, but neither he nor Neil remember being at the session. Singer/songwriter PHIL CODY was signed to Kirshner Records at the time, which would explain how DON KIRSHNER had access to one of his demos. Recently, claims that co-writer BOB LEVINE was the lead singer have surfaced. Some of the vocals sound very much like PHIL CODY, but he refuses to discuss The Archies at all. Mixes in both mono and stereo exist.

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE
Arranged and Conducted by
JIMMY WISNER
Produced by
RON DANTE
Executive Producer:
DON KIRSHNER
Engineered by
ELIOT SCHEINER
Recorded at A & R Studios
New York City
April 5-12, 1972*

BYKS-4713
Strangers In The Morning
(Ron Dante-Howie Greenfield)

BYKS-4714
unreleased

BYKS-4715
Plum Crazy
(Ron Dante)
cameo vocal by MERLE MILLER

*This was the final record date and the final single recorded by the original Archies group. RON DANTE recalls JIMMY WISNER (the favorite music 
director of TOMMY JAMES) conducting a large studio band 
at the session.

ARTIE KAPLAN

ARTIE KAPLAN
Musical Contractor for THE ARCHIES (1968-72)

The Archies were inactive from 1972 to 1974. Then in September 1974, Filmation Studios revived the group in a new animated series called "US of Archie." The songs they performed were thematic compositions based on events in American history; copyrighted titles include "Alexander Graham Bell," "Fulton's Steamboat", "The Giver", "The Great Divide," "His Light Helped Light The Way", "Horace Mann", "Long Wave Old Glory" and the "US of Archie" theme song. The main songwriters were NORM PRESCOTT and RAY ELLIE (writing under his wife's name, YVETTE BLAIS). ELLIS, a key figure in early Rock 'n' Roll, had written incidental music for the original Archie cartoon shows. Music production was handled by JACKIE MILLS, best known for his work with BOBBY SHERMAN, DAVY JONES and The Brady Kids; the sessions were held at Larrabee Sound Studios in North Hollywood. TOM McKENZIE, formerly of the Doodletown Pipers, was the lead singer. The series ran for just one season (1974-5), and then was syndicated. Two of the sixteen episodes, "The Great Divide" and "Mr. Watson, Come Here" were issued on a 1975 Peter Pan soundtrack album, but the "US of Archie" songs never got an official release. For that reason, they fall outside the scope of this discography.


KELLY-LYNN



DANI KNIGHTS
Lead and Background Singers for the 21st century ARCHIES

The Archies
featuring RON DANTE,
KELLY-LYNN and DANI KNIGHTS
A Ron Dante Production
Arranged and Engineered by
TED PERLMAN and SCOTT ERICKSON
Produced by
RON DANTE
Recorded at The Ranch and Westlake Audio,
Los Angeles
June/July 2008*

???
Here Comes Santa Claus
(Gene Autry-Oakley Haldeman)

???
Up On The Housetop
(Benjamin Russell Hanby)

???
Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree
(Johnny Marks)

???
A Holly Jolly Christmas
(Johnny Marks)

???
Jingle Bell Rock
(Joe Beal, Jim Boothe)

???
I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
(Tommy Connor)

???
Run, Rudolph, Run 
(Marvin Lee Brodie-Johnny Marks)

???
Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
(Fred Coots-Haven Gillespie)

???
Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas
(Ralph Blane-Hugh Martin)

???
Sleigh Ride
(Leroy Anderson-Mitchell Parish)

???
Archie's Christmas Party
(Ron Dante)

???
Christmas In Riverdale
(Ron Dante)

*Every song listed appeared on a 2008 Pendulum Records CD called The Archies' Christmas Album featuring Betty + Veronica. The chance to cut a holiday-themed album brought the RON DANTE-led Archies group back into the recording studio for the first time in 36 years. The backing band was led by '70s Pop legend BO DONALDSON. KELLY-LYNN FEDERMAN (Veronica's singing voice) is a Christian artist and frequent session singer on Disney music projects. South African emigrée DANIELLE van Zyl (DANI KNIGHTS) is an aspiring Country singer; she provided Betty's singing voice. No matrix numbers are available for the tracks. No singles were released from these sessions.


HUGH McCRACKEN
Lead Guitarist for the ARCHIES

Presenting (at last) the musicians who played on Archies' recording
sessions!  Saxophonist and songwriter Artie Kaplan contracted hundreds
of studio dates for these ace session men.

THE ARCHIES:

DAVE APPELL . . . guitar
EVERETT BARKSDALE . . . guitar
JEFF BARRY . . . percussion
BOBBY BLOOM . . . percussion
ARTIE BUTLER . . . keyboards
JIMMY CALVERT . . . guitar
TOMMY CERONE . . . percussion
GARY CHESTER . . . drums
GEORGE DEVENS . . . percussion
SAL DiTROIA aka SAL the HOOK . . . guitar
DON EVANS . . . guitar
RON  FRANGIPANE . . . keyboards
STAN FREE . . . keyboards
AL GORGONI . . . guitar
BOBBY GREGG . . . drums
PAUL GRIFFIN . . . keyboards
ANDY KIM . . . guitar
BERNIE LEIGHTON . . . keyboards
HERBIE  LOVELLE . . . drums
CHARLES MACEY . . . guitar
LOUIE MAURO . . . bass
HUGH McCRACKEN . . . lead guitar
JOEY MACHO aka JOE MACK . . . bass
TRADE MARTIN . . . guitar
FRANK OWENS . . . keyboards
CHUCK RAINEY . . . bass
AL ROGERS . . . drums
BUDDY SALTZMAN . . . drums
DAVID SPINOZZA . . . guitar
DON THOMAS . . . guitar
JIM TYRELL . . . bass

From 1971-2, Archies records featured horns. On the last Archies
single, "Plum Crazy" b/w "Strangers In The Morning", strings were heard
as well.  These orchestras probably included . . .

HENRI AUBERT . . . violin
 SEYMOUR BARAB . . . cello
GEORGE BERG . . . woodwinds 
PHIL BODNER . . . woodwinds
 ALFRED BROWN . . . viola
MAC CEPPOS . . . violin 
LEON COHEN . . . woodwinds
BURT COLLINS . . . trumpet
DONALD CORRADO . . . French horn
PETER DIMITRIADIS . . . violin
HAROLD FURMANSKY . . . viola
BERNIE GLOW . . . trumpet 
MICKEY GRAVINE . . . trombone
IRVING HOROWITZ . . . woodwinds 
IRVING MARKOWITZ . . . trumpet 
KERMIT MOORE . . . cello
GEORGE OCKNER . . . violin
GEORGE RICCI . . . cello 
IRVING SPICE . . . violin 
DAVID SACKSON . . . viola
JOE SHEPLEY . . . trumpet

Musicians for THE ARCHIES' CHRISTMAS ALBUM:

BO DONALDSON . . . keyboards
GEORGE EISAMAN . . . guitar
SCOTT ERICKSON . . . keyboards
BILL HAARBAUER . . . drums
TED PERLMAN . . . guitar, keyboards
TIM PIERCE . . . guitar
RICK THIBODEAUX . . . bass*

*RICK THIBODEAUX is an actor as well as a musician. As a child, 
he portrayed Little Ricky on the "I Love Lucy" 
TV series.

Finally, here are the backing vocalists Jeff Barry
favored in the late 1960s.  Several have been
confirmed as "members" of The Archies:

JEANNE THOMAS FOX, RON DANTE, JOEY LEVINE, 
LESLIE MILLER, LINDA NOVEMBER, 
ARTIE RESNICK, KENNY KAREN
and TONI WINE

REAL ARCHIES RECORDING SESSIONS

Sessionography Annotated and Compiled by
DC Hampton Jacobs
Researched by Claudia Depkin and Parris Bowe
at RCA/BMG (Sony Music) Entertainment Archives,
New York City

Much Thanks to
Jeff Barry, Mark Chadbourne, Donna Marie Clauss, 
Dan Giddings, Neil Brian Goldberg, Craig Harmon,
Artie Kaplan, Tom McKenzie, Phil X. Milstein, 
Susan Morse, Tom Mourgos, Ciro Oliva, 
Laura Pinto (The Pineapple Princess),
Joe Renzetti, Doyle Tatum 
and Donny Thompson

Special Thanks to 
Dean Christopher

Extra Special Thanks to
Ron Dante
The one and only voice of Archie!

Dedicated to the memory of
Keith Davideit and Don Kirshner