GENE PITNEY - 'Animal Crackers' / 'Don't Mean To Be A Preacher' (Musicor MU-1235) February 1967

A few weeks ago I posted an entry on my blog focusing on the songs of Garry Bonner and Alan Gordon. They were both in NYC group The Magicians, then when their teenage group disbanded found themselves hot property by writing hit records for The Turtles.

A record I mentioned, but didn't have at the time was "Animal Crackers" by Gene Pitney. I've since obtained a copy of the record and I'm giving it some publicity today. I don't have any other Gene Pitney record in my collection but I am aware of his hit records, none of which sounded as far-out as this one under my spotlight.

I'd say this was 'psych-tinged' and most definitely not a commercial sound. Gene perhaps took a risk with this recording to release it as a single. It didn't feature on any studio album at the time and wasn't released in Britain.

It didn't fare very well at all and did not break into the Billboard top 100 in America. What a shame, as this tune is wonderful.

vintage promotional advert February 1967