born on 4/6/1947 in Washington Heights, NY, United States
Toni Wine (born June 4, 1947, Washington Heights, New York) is an American pop music songwriter, who wrote songs for such artists as The Mindbenders ("A Groovy Kind of Love"), Tony Orlando and Dawn ("Candida"), Elvis Presley, and Checkmates, Ltd. ("Black Pearl") in the late 1960s and 1970s. Wine also sang the female vocals for the cartoon music group The Archies, most notably on their #1 hit song "Sugar, Sugar" (singing the line, "I'm gonna make your life so sweet.") However, she did not sing the lead vocal in the song "Jingle Jangle", but her voice is quite prevalent in the chorus; the lead was sung by Ron Dante using his falsetto voice. In addition, Wine was a backing vocalist on Gene Pitney's "It Hurts to Be In Love" and on Willie Nelson's "Always on My Mind."
In 1963, Toni Wine had a nationally charted single with "My Boyfriend's Coming Home For Christmas". It reached #22 on Billboard's "Best Bets For Christmas" survey. She cowrote The Shirelles' early 1964 mid-chart hit "Tonight You're Gonna Fall In Love With Me".
Wine was a child prodigy who studied piano at the Juilliard School of Music before going to work at Screen Gems Publishing. There she initially collaborated with songwriters including Gerry Goffin, Howard Greenfield and Steve Venet. The first Wine composition that was recorded was The Cookies' "Only to Other People," but she needed an ensuing three-year association with Carole Bayer Sager to blossom. The earliest fruits of their partnership, "A Groovy Kind of Love," topped the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1966 for Wayne Fontana and the Mindbenders (the song returned to #1 in 1988 as a remake by Phil Collins). By this time Wine was also recording as a solo artist, releasing singles for Colpix Records to minimal acclaim.
By 1969, Wine joined with Ron Dante, Ellie Greenwich and Andy Kim to record as The Archies. The following year, Wine wrote "Candida". The first recording did not do well, so she then reunited with fellow Brill Building alum Tony Orlando, who sang lead while Wine and others (such as Linda November) sang backup. The song was a hit, and the trio went on to record "Knock Three Times", which also became a major hit.
After recording a handful of bubblegum-flavoured tracks, in the early 1970s, Wine married the record producer Chips Moman and relocated to Memphis, Tennessee. There she released material for Atco Records and Monument Records in addition to a continuing career as a writer and session vocalist. For over 30 years she was one of the voices of Meow Mix Cat Food, sharing with Linda November and the famous "meow, meow, meow, meow."
In 2007, Wine toured and appeared in concert with Tony Orlando, as vocalist and keyboardist. She performed the same function in Orlando's 2011 tour.
- Bubblegum pop
- The Archie Show
- Interview with Toni Wine
- Interview With Ron Dante
- Linda November and Artie Schroeck (contains clips of singing) (audio). Ronnie Allen Show (December 2009). Retrieved on June 15, 2011.
- IMDb.com - accessed July 2009
- Toni Wine - Official Site
- [Toni Wine at All Music Guide Toni Wine biography] at Allmusic website
- [Toni Wine at All Music Guide Toni Wine songwriting credits at Allmusic]