Nino Tempo & April Stevens
|Nino Tempo & April Stevens|
|Origin||Niagara Falls, New York, United States|
|Years active||1960s –|
Nino Tempo & April Stevens (born Antonino and Carol LoTempio) are a brother and sister singing act from Niagara Falls, New York. Formed in the early 1960s when Nino Tempo and April Stevens signed as a duo with Atco Records, the group had a string of Billboard hits and earned a Grammy Award as "best rock & roll record of the year" for the single "Deep Purple".
"Deep Purple" is notable for April Stevens' speaking the lyrics in a low, sweet voice during the second half of the song while her brother sings. When the duo first recorded the song as a demo, Tempo forgot the words, and Stevens spoke the lyrics to remind him. The producers thought Stevens' spoken interludes were "cute" and should be included on the finished product, but according to Stevens, her brother was not as easily convinced: "He didn't want anyone talking while he was singing!"
Producer Ahmet Ertegün had originally intended "Deep Purple" to be the B-side of a song called "I've Been Carrying A Torch For You So Long That It Burned A Great Big Hole In My Heart": he was dubious of Tempo's belief that it would be a hit, calling it "the most embarrassing thing" the duo had ever recorded. When radio stations preferred "Deep Purple," Ertegun relented, and so "I've Been Carrying A Torch..." held the distinction of being the longest title of a flipside of a Billboard number one record, until Prince's "When Doves Cry" in 1984 had "17Days..." on the reverse.
Despite being considered "rock and roll," "Deep Purple" also reached number one on Billboard's Adult Contemporary singles chart. The record was followed by a series of singles of more oldies in a similar style: "Whispering", "Stardust", "Tea for Two".
Music journalist Richie Unterberger has described the later disc "All Strung Out" as Nino Tempo & April Stevens' "greatest triumph", declaring it "one of the greatest Phil Spector-inspired productions of all time". For years following their charting singles, the duo continued recording, but failed to achieve continued sales success.
- Nino Tempo's Rock 'N Roll Beach Party (1956) Liberty Records LRP3023
- A Nino Tempo - April Stevens Program Nino Tempo (Side One) & April Stevens (Side Two) RCA Camden CAS 824
- Teach Me Tiger (1959) Imperial 12055
- Deep Purple (1963) Atco 33-156 (Mono) and Atco SD 33-156 (Stereo)
- Nino And April Sing the Great Songs (1964) Atco 33-162 (Mono) and Atco SD 33-162 (Stereo)
- Hey Baby! (1966) Atco 33-180 (Mono) and Atco SD 33-180 (Stereo)
- All Strung Out (1966) White Whale WW-113 (Mono) and White Whale WW-7113 (Stereo)
- Come See Me 'Round Midnight (Nino Tempo & 5th Avenue Sax) A&M SP3629
- Love Story and Their Hits of Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow Nino Tempo & April Stevens (Shown as Nino & April, New A& M Singles, plus five early hits. Re-recorded and released only in Europe) A&M 87 980 IT
- "Teach Me Tiger" (Stevens only, 1959) #86 Pop Singles
- "Sweet and Lovely" (1962) #77 Pop Singles
- ""Baby Weemus" (1963)
- "Deep Purple" (1963) #1 on Billboard HOT 100, #48 on Pop Albums, #17 UK Singles Chart
- "Whispering" (1964) #4 Adult Contemporary, #11 Pop Singles, #20 UK
- "Stardust" (1964) #32 Pop Singles
- "I'm Confessin' (That I Love You)" (1964) #99 Pop Singles
- "Tea For Two" (1964) #56 Pop Singles
- "All Strung Out" (1966) #26 Pop Singles
- "I Can't Go On Livin' Baby Without You" (1967) #86 Pop Singles
- "Let It Be Me"/"Wings Of Love" (1968)
- Edition. Billboard Books. ISBN 0-8230-7677-6. p. 139
- Bronson, Fred. (October 1, 2003) The Billboard Book of Number 1 Hits, updated and expanded 5th Edition. Billboard Books. ISBN 0-8230-7677-6. p. 139
- Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 167. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
- Nino Tempo & April Stevens Biography at AllMusic
- Vancouver's CFUN chart May 25, 1963
- Discography information and Billboard charting taken from Billboard charts at AllMusic. UK charting from Roberts, David (2002). Guinness World Records British Hit Singles (15th ed. ed.). London: Guinness World Records Ltd. ISBN 0-85112-187-X., p.464