1910 Fruitgum Company

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1910 Fruitgum Company
The 1910 Fruitgum Company performing live on November 17, 2007
The 1910 Fruitgum Company performing live on November 17, 2007
Background information
OriginLinden, New Jersey, United States
GenresBubblegum pop, pop rock
Years active1965–1970, 1999–present
  • Frank Jeckell
  • Mick Mansuetto
  • Glenn Lewis
  • Keith Crane
  • Eric Lipper
  • John Roginski
Past members
  • Mark Gutkowski
  • Bob Brescia
  • Floyd Marcus
  • Steve Mortkowitz
  • Richie Gomez
  • Pat Karwan
  • Rusty Oppenheimer
  • Mike Edell
  • Sid Way
  • Frank Yanni

The 1910 Fruitgum Company is an American bubblegum pop band of the 1960s. The group's Billboard Hot 100 hits were "Simon Says", "May I Take a Giant Step", "1, 2, 3, Red Light", "Goody Goody Gumdrops", "Indian Giver", "Special Delivery", and "The Train".[1]


The band began as Jeckell and The Hydes in New Jersey in 1966. The original members were Frank Jeckell, Mark Gutkowski, Floyd Marcus, Pat Karwan and Steve Mortkowitz - all from Linden, New Jersey.[2][3]

During 1967, they were signed to Buddah Records, where they released five LPs under their own name and a variety of singles, as well as appearing on the LP The Kasenetz-Katz Singing Orchestral Circus, which sounded like the usual Buddah studio band in spite of its promotion as a "bubblegum superjam". Their first hit single, "Simon Says", was written by Elliot Chiprut. During the recording process, the band changed the beat and patterned the song after "Wooly Bully" by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs.[citation needed] "Simon Says" soon became a success, hitting #4 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. The track peaked at #2 on the UK Singles Chart[4] and was heard in the 1968 Frederick Wiseman documentary High School.[citation needed]

The original five members of the 1910 Fruitgum Company circa 1966; photo taken at the home of Floyd Marcus. Shown on top from the left are Floyd and Steve. On the bottom are Pat, Frank and Mark.

The band started touring, opening for major acts such as The Beach Boys.[5] They also released these other chart hits: "May I Take a Giant Step" (U.S. #63), "1, 2, 3, Red Light" (U.S. #5), "Special Delivery" (U.S. #38), "Goody, Goody Gumdrops" (U.S. #37), "Indian Giver" (U.S. #5) and "The Train" (U.S. #57).[6]

The original group disbanded in 1970.[7]

In the years of 1979-1980 the band was briefly resurrected through Jolly Joyce Agency out of Philadelphia with members Chuck Allen, Fred Eyer, Tony DiNiso, Cindy Tritz, Mike Schneider and Kevin.[citation needed]

In 1999, original member Frank Jeckell and Mick Mansueto put the act back together.[7] As of 2019, Fruitgum currently performs its own hits, in addition to other songs from the 1960s.[8]

Million sellers[edit]

"Simon Says" sold three and a half million. "1, 2, 3, Red Light" and "Indian Giver" each sold over one million copies. All three were awarded gold discs.[2]

Members, past and present[edit]

Current lineup[edit]

  • Frank Jeckell (Original Member Guitar and Vocals)
  • Mick Mansueto (Lead Vocals and Percussion)
  • Glenn Lewis (Bass and Vocals)
  • Eric Lipper (Keyboards and Vocals)
  • Keith Crane (Drums)
  • John Roginski (Guitar, Keyboards and Vocals)

Former members[edit]

  • Mark Gutkowski (Original Member Lead Singer on all the hits and Hammond B3 Organist)
  • Pat Karwan (Original Member Lead Guitarist and Vocals)
  • Steve Mortkowitz (Original Member Bass Player and Vocals)
  • Floyd Marcus (Original Member Drummer and Vocals)
  • Mick Mansueto (Lead vocals)
  • Jerry Roth (Tenor Sax)
  • Bob Brescia (Keyboards, Vocals and Music Director)
  • Thomas "Bart" Bartleson (Drums)
  • Mike Edell (Keyboards and Vocals)
  • John Korba-Guitar/Vocals
  • Ralph Cohen (Douglas) (Trumpet)
  • Pat Soriano (Hammond B3 Organist)
  • Bruce Shay (Bass and Vocals)
  • Rusty Oppenheimer (Drums and Vocals)
  • Larry Ripley (Bass, Woodwinds and Vocals)
  • Chuck Travis (Guitar and Vocals)
  • Richie Gomez (Guitar and Vocals)
  • Michael Stoppiello (Guitar and Vocals)

1980s road band members[edit]

  • Randy Monaco (Lead Vocals)
  • Jim Bulkowski (Lead Guitar)
  • Russ Hoffmaster (Drums & Vocals)
  • Rick Gainor (Bass & Vocals)
  • John Siroky (Keyboards)



Year Title Peak chart positions Record Label B-side
From same album as A-side except where indicated
1967 "Simon Says" 4 2 2 1 Buddah Records "Reflections from the Looking Glass" (Non-LP track) Simon Says
1968 "May I Take a Giant Step (Into Your Heart)" 63 42 21 "(Poor Old) Mr. Jensen"
"1, 2, 3, Red Light" 5 8 1 "Sticky, Sticky" (Non-LP track) 1, 2, 3, Red Light
"Goody Goody Gumdrops" 37 29 26 "Candy Kisses" (Non-LP track) Goody Goody Gumdrops
1969 "Indian Giver" 5 5 1 "Pow Wow" (Non-LP track) Indian Giver
"Special Delivery" 38 47 17 "No Good Annie"
"The Train" 57 68 34 "Eternal Light" (Non-LP track) Hard Ride
"When We Get Married" 118 76 "Baby Bret" (Non-LP track) Juiciest Fruitgum
1970 "Go Away" 77 Super K Records "The Track" Non-LP tracks


Year Album Billboard 200 Record Label
1968 Simon Says 162 Buddah Records
1, 2, 3, Red Light 163
Goody Goody Gumdrops
1969 Indian Giver 147
Hard Ride
1970 Juiciest Fruitgum
1993 Juiciest Hits
2001 The Best of the 1910 Fruitgum Company: Simon Says
2007 Bubblegum Christmas Collectables Records


  1. ^ "Interview With The 1910 Fruitgum Company". Classicbands.com. Retrieved 2015-08-19.
  2. ^ a b Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 244 & 264. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  3. ^ Voger, Mark. "1910 Fruitgum Company: From Linden to the Top 10", NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, February 28, 2014, updated March 29, 2019. Accessed November 25, 2019. "Jeckell's fellow founding members were Mark Gutkowski (lead vocals, keyboards), Pat Karwan (guitar), Steve Mortkowitz (bass), and Floyd Marcus (drums).... And so five young men from Linden with aspirations to be the next Vanilla Fudge scored a Top 10 hit ... with a bubblegum song."
  4. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 395. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  5. ^ "Floyd Marcus of 1910 Fruitgum Co : Songwriter Interviews". Songfacts.com. Retrieved 2015-08-19.
  6. ^ Colin Larkin, ed. (1997). The Virgin Encyclopedia of Popular Music (Concise ed.). Virgin Books. p. 904. ISBN 1-85227-745-9.
  7. ^ a b Bower, Carolyn. "Remembering 1968: The Music of 50 Years Ago!". Boomermagazine.com. Retrieved 19 April 2019.
  8. ^ Price, Robert. "'60s return to Newton Theatre". New Jersey Herald. Retrieved 19 April 2019.[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]