Len Barry has died. The 78 year old pop star of the early to mid 60s is still heard on the radio singing his hits “1, 2, 3” and “The Bristol Stomp” with his group the Dovells.
It’s weird, too, because I just heard “1, 2, 3” on the car radio in the last few days, and was singing along to it (don’t worry, I was alone). What a great hit. According to Wikipedia, Motown sued Len and his two co-writers because they thought the song sounded like a Supremes B side. They got 15% of the royalties. But I’d say that five years later Motown stole it back for the Jackson 5.
Anyway, listen to that sax, played by Artie Kaplan. The personnel on the original recording included Vinnie Bell, Bobby Eli, and Sal Ditroia on guitars; Joe Macho on bass; Artie Butler on percussion; the soon to be famous Leon Huff on piano; Bill Tole and Roswell Rudd on trombones; Lee Morgan on trumpet; Fred Hubbard on clarinet; and Bobby Gregg on drums.
RIP Len, born Leonard Borisoff on June 12, 1942.
A notice posted on the Dovells’ Facebook page announced the death, but no cause or survivors.