Peter Lemongello

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Peter Lemongello
Born February 11, 1947
Jersey City, New Jersey, United States
Genres Pop
Occupation(s) Singer, entrepreneur
Instruments vocals
Years active 1976–present
Labels Private Stock Records

Peter Lemongello (born February 11, 1947) is an American singer from Jersey City, New Jersey and North Babylon, New York, best known for his double album Love '76, the first albums to be sold exclusively through television advertising. After spending years as a cabaret career, with several appearances on national TV (including 25 times on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson), Lemongello hit upon the idea of creating an album to be sold exclusively on TV.[1]

Love '76[edit]

Lemongello is the first person to sell over a million records through a television direct marketing campaign,[2] and was also the first entertainer to underwrite a television direct advertising campaign selling shares in the project to private investors.[3]

Using a city-by-city marketing strategy, he and his partners began their Love ‘76 advertising campaign with an around-the-dial TV blitz in the New York market starting January 1, 1976, and ran commercials on all six New York channels 70 to 100 times a week. Sales of the double album skyrocketed him to fame, and the campaign entered Los Angeles and Las Vegas[4] and the album began to sell in the millions, attracting widespread media attention.

The artist attracted the attention of Private Stock Records, who signed Lemongello in April 1976. By choice, Lemongello ended his self promotional efforts and released his second album, "Do I Love You", in early 1977. Shortly after its release, Private Stock Records went out of business. Lemongello concentrated on live performances, appearing at Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.


Lemongello was spoofed in the episode of Saturday Night Live that originally aired May 22, 1976, with Chevy Chase playing a singer named Peter Lemon Mood Ring, who changed colors with every song. It was widely appreciated, and Chevy Chase continued the spoof in the Universal Feature Film, "Fletch Lives" in the late 1980s. The Love '76 commercial was parodied by recording artist Will Dailey in May 2009. This video on YouTube captures the scene of two stereotypical show business managers coercing Dailey to appear in a TV advertisement for his new album, Torrent, so that he can recreate the success of Peter Lemongello, Zamfir and Slim Whitman. The commercial itself is a scene-by-scene recreation of the original Lemongello spot that first aired on television in 1976.

What Lemongello accomplished is still talked about, studied in college marketing courses and referenced as the best method of circumventing the established industry by going directly to the public to create a career, in advertising agencies across the country.[citation needed]

After Love '76[edit]

Lemongello has continued his career in Branson, Missouri, billed as Branson's "Italian Crooner". Most recently he has adopted The Great American Songbook and appears frequently across the country.

Today Lemongello currently lives in Boca Raton, FL with his wife Karen, and his son Peter Jr. Peter Lemongello Jr. always sings on stage during his father's shows and has sung Can't Help Falling in Love (duet with his father), The Wanderer (solo by Peter Jr.), and currently sings Sweet Caroline (duet with his father), and Jailhouse Rock (solo by Peter Jr.).

In late 2012, Lemongello re-recorded his 1976 song "Can't Get Enough Of You Girl" with producer and songwriter Jimmy Michaels. The re-recording appears on the re-issue of the Michaels release entitled, "More Things Change."


  1. ^ IMBd Direct
  2. ^ Charles Rapp Enterprises – Peter Lemongello Retrieved May 5, 2007
  3. ^
  4. ^ “The $390,000 Man” Time; Monday, May. 31, 1976

External links[edit]