Jeff Barry

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Jeff Barry (born Joel Adelberg, April 3, 1938, Brooklyn, New York) is an American pop music songwriter, singer, and record producer.

Early career

His parents divorced when he was seven, and his mother moved him and his sister to Plainfield, New Jersey, where they resided for several years before returning to New York.

After graduating from Erasmus Hall High School, Barry served in the Army, then returned to New York where he attended City College. Although he leaned toward a degree in engineering, his main aspiration was to become a singer. He left college in the late '50s to sign with RCA Records, courtesy of music publisher Arnold Shaw. Around this time, he adopted a new name more in tune with show business, borrowing "Jeff" from actor Jeff Chandler and "Barry" from family friends.

Barry recorded several singles for RCA label, including the self-penned "It's Called Rock and Roll", backed with "Hip Couple", released in 1959. The following year, Barry garnered his first significant success as a songwriter with two songs targeting the burgeoning teen market. First, Sam Cooke took Barry's "Teenage Sonata" to No. 22 on the Billboard R&B charts. Later that year, the teen-tragedy ballad "Tell Laura I Love Her", written with lyricist Ben Raleigh, went to No. 1 on the U.S. pop charts for Ray Peterson and to No. 1 on the UK Singles Chart for British singer Ricky Valance.

In the '60s, Barry would partner, both...
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