Song:The Lion Sleeps Tonight
Most music fans should be familiar with Robert John's 1979 chart topper Sad Eyes. His one other big hit was his 1972 cover of The Lion Sleeps Tonight which of course was a huge hit for The Tokens in 1960. He was born Robert John Pedrick Jr. 1946 in Brooklyn, NY. As 12 year old Bobby Pedrick Jr., he charted in 1958 with the single White Bucks and Saddle Shoes for Bigtop Records. He recorded for other small labels with little success. As leader of Bobby and the Consoles, his 1962 single My Jelly Bean was a regional hit in New York. In the mid-60s, he recorded for MGM's Verve Forecast label with little success. Then he changed his name to Robert John and signed with Columbia Records in 1968. He charted with the single If You Don't Want My Love and an album was released with the same title. Then he recorded a couple of unsuccessful singles for A & M. Finally John struck gold when Atlantic Records released his 1971 cover of The Lion Sleeps Tonight. It reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. The interesting thing about this record is it was arranged by Hank Medress of The Tokens and produced by Dave Appell who also produced the original recording. Unfortunately, John only released a few singles on Atlantic and there was never an album. Later in the 70s, he recorded a few singles for Ariola America. Then he struck gold again in 1979 with Sad Eyes on EMI America. He recorded two albums for them and he last recorded in the early 80s. You can get both of John's big hits on this Curb Records comp. John actually recorded a dance mix of The Lion Sleeps Tonight for this CD. He retired after that. Here's a video for The Lion Sleeps Tonight by Robert John.