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May 22, 2020 3:10 pm  #1

Voice Of “Sugar Sugar” Is One Of Pop’s Most Famous Unknowns

Say the name Ron Dante and most people will blink at you not knowing who you’re talking about. But say The Archies and “Sugar “Sugar” and there’s almost no one who won’t have heard his voice.
Dante is one of those rare artists who’s more famous for being virtually unknown. Not only was he the voice of “Sugar X2,” but he sang lead on “Tracy” by The Cuff Links and did the vocal for “Leader of The Laundromat,” a novelty record by The Detergents I actually bought while on vacation in Florida when I was just a little kid. It was a takeoff on “Leader of the Pack.”
In a fairly extensive interview, Dante weighs in on his musical “fame,” how he arranged “Tracy” after doing the vocal, singing background for all of Barry Manilow’s hits, as well as being involved in dozens of famous commercial jingles and how it feels to be one of the most famous unknowns in oldies history.
Ron Dante: The Voice of "Sugar, Sugar"
I can only think of one other singer that beats his record – Tony Burrows. He was the voice behind hits like “Love Grows Where My Rosemary Goes” by Edison Lighthouse, “My Baby Loves Lovin’ ” from White Plains, “Beach Baby” by First Class and “United We Stand,” under the name Brotherhood of Man. Not to mention “Gimme Dat Ding,” a novelty record from The Pipkins.
He finally had a hit under his own name when “My Melanie Makes Me Smile” appeared on the charts. But that wasn’t what he became best known for.
 "Burrows made history [in 1970] when he became the first and only performer to ever appear on the BBC’s Top of The Pops three times in a single program with three separate groups, a feat that got him unofficially banned from the program when the producers thought that something fishy might be going on.”
6 Bands. 6 Hits. 1 Lead Singer
I only hope they both made a lot of money from their anonymity!


May 22, 2020 9:59 pm  #2

Re: Voice Of “Sugar Sugar” Is One Of Pop’s Most Famous Unknowns

Fascinating story.  I remember seeing his name in the trades and on records.  Glad he's done well and keeps on going!!


May 23, 2020 1:41 am  #3

Re: Voice Of “Sugar Sugar” Is One Of Pop’s Most Famous Unknowns

He did a great job on  the Archie's  Jingle Jangle    when he did  the female  voice  Very hard to pick up it was a male. In a crazy  but true fact, SugarSugar never  made the New Zealand Top 50, but Jingle Jangle made the Top 10.


May 23, 2020 7:42 am  #4

Re: Voice Of “Sugar Sugar” Is One Of Pop’s Most Famous Unknowns

Ron Dante's story is amazing.  I knew that he was the lead singer of  the Archies and Cuff Links, but I never knew he was the only singer in the Cuff Link's song, "Tracy", doing all the background vocals.  And it was news to me that he was behind Barry Manilow's music from the beginning.  Wow.

And yes, George, I still love the bubblegum song "Sugar Sugar".  My classmate girls and I would dance the "Popcorn" to this song.  Great memories.  


May 25, 2020 5:52 am  #5

Re: Voice Of “Sugar Sugar” Is One Of Pop’s Most Famous Unknowns

ron dante has always been known ro me, and i suspect a great number of fans, obsevers, and students of late 60's-early 70's pop recordings, certainly at least those originating in the u.s.a., aimed at the teen market.

pardon me if this seems cynical, but i have to wonder if dante's act, as an unknown artist, hasn't been at least in part been based on an illusion of obscurity? myth making can produce money, after all. his talent and brilliant recordings regardless stand, in any case.

Last edited by gopher (May 25, 2020 6:22 am)


May 30, 2020 12:24 am  #6

Re: Voice Of “Sugar Sugar” Is One Of Pop’s Most Famous Unknowns

I think he's actually much more than bubblegum.  I have his "ever coveted" Ron Dante Anthology, 2-CD set - one song after another, after still another.  He is good basic rock!


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