Don Kirshner and Ron Dante worked together as teenagers for Aldon Music, whose roster of writers included Neil Sedaka, Gerry Goffin and Carole King. After singing on their demo recordings, Dante started writing his own songs.
When Kirshner devised The Archies concept he approached Dante and asked him to sing on the sessions (along with vocalists Toni Wine and Andy Kim). Jeff Barry – the power behind The Monkees – was recruited as producer.
The non-existent group subsequently scored five Top Ten hits, including the #1 song, Sugar Sugar, which spent four weeks at the top of the US charts in August/September 1969.
Despite The Archies cartoon characters being unknown in Britain, Sugar Sugar topped the charts there also, in November 1969. The song became the biggest-selling single of 1969 and was The Archies’ only UK hit.
When The Archies project ended, Dante moved to Decca Records and recorded Tracy under the name The Cuff Links. He moved into radio and television commercials before eventually producing Mandy for Barry Manilow.
Prior to The Archies, Ron Dante had provided the voice for another fictitious group, The Detergents, who had enjoyed an American hit with Leader of the Laundromat (a humorous take on The Shangri-Las‘ Leader Of The Pack).