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Life and career
In the 1960s, Poncia formed a songwriting team with Peter Anders. An album of songs co-written by these childhood friends The Anders & Poncia Album, was produced by Richard Perry and released in 1969. Their songs were recorded by artists including The Ronettes, Bobby Bloom, and Darlene Love. Anders and Poncia were also members of The Trade Winds and The Innocence. The Trade Winds's debut single "New York is a Lonely Town" reached #32 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1965. In 1991, the Japanese singer-songwriter Tatsuro Yamashita covered this song as "Tokyo is a Lonely Town".
In 1968, with Frankie Meluso (aka Mell) and Peter Anders, Poncia founded MAP (Mell Anders Poncia) City Records in New York City. Their company included a small recording studio brought by their chief engineer, Peter H. Rosen, who recorded sixteen albums before the company dissolved in 1970.
During the 1970s, Poncia became Ringo Starr's co-writer, and appeared on several of his solo albums: Ringo (1973), Goodnight Vienna (1974), Ringo's Rotogravure (1976), Ringo the 4th (1977), and Bad Boy (1978). He also produced albums for Melissa Manchester and Lynda Carter's 1978 album Portrait. As a songwriter, he wrote songs for Jackie DeShannon, Martha Reeves, and Tommy James. Poncia is also listed as co-writer on "You Make Me Feel Like Dancing" with Leo Sayer. He was also the producer for The Faragher Brothers albums, Open Your Eyes (1978) and The Faraghers (1979).
Poncia also produced another Kiss album, 1980's Unmasked. He sang backup vocals and helped with songwriting on both albums, having 8 co-writing credits on Unmasked.
In 1981, he produced the album Turn Out The Lights for the band Tycoon.
Poncia also produced the Detroit rock band Adrenalin and their song "Road of the Gypsy", from the film Iron Eagle in 1985. He also produced DC Drive and their self-titled album in 1991. Poncia produced Criss's second post-Kiss solo album, 1982's Let Me Rock You, and he was credited as co-writer for five songs on Kiss's 1989 release, Hot in the Shade.