Album:This Is Fabian (1959-61)
Fabian Forte had three top ten hits in 1959. Tiger was the biggest of those hits. When music fans figured out he couldn't sing, Forte switched to acting. He's had a long acting career mostly on TV. He was born Feb. 6, 1942 in Philadelphia. Chancellor Records owner Bob Marcucci was looking for handsome teenage boys that he could turn into pop singers. He didn't care if they could sing. Marcucci was at a friend's house who lived next door to the Forte family. Fabian's dad suffered a heart attack. and while an ambulance was taking him to hospital, Marcucci spotted Fabian and gave him his card. He resisted at first but eventually his family agreed to let Fabian record. Frankie Avalon knew Fabian and recommended him as well. Marcucci soon realized that Fabian couldn't sing but he thought he could sell him anyway. Fabian appeared on American Bandstand after meeting Dick Clark. They gave him I'm A Man written by the legendary songwriting team of Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman. It was Fabian's first top 40 hit. Then Marcucci really turned up the juice and Fabian's next three singles were top ten hits. First there was Turn Me Loose, then Hound Dog Man. Tiger was the biggest of these hits. It reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was written by Philly doo wop guy Ollie Jones who also wrote the 1957 Nat King Cole hit Send For Me. Fabian's music career ended when he testified during the early 60s payola hearings. You can get all his hits on this Ace Records comp. He acted in some films for 20th Century Fox and then he signed a seven picture deal with American International Pictures in 1965. His biggest hit was the 1966 film Fireball 500. He did a lot of TV guest shots in the 70s. He still sings occasionally and when he does, he tours with his old pal Frankie Avalon. Here's Fabian performing Tiger on The Ed Sullivan Show 1959.