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In the early 1960s it appeared that singer Jack Jones he was going to be big. He was the son of Allan Jones, a singer-actor who enjoyed success in movies.

Jack Jones seemed to have the looks to make the switch to movies, so it was inevitable he'd do some acting, but like Andy Williams, Jones was bland and awkward on screen. He is probably best remember today for singing the theme song of "The Love Boat."

He kept record and over the years has enjoyed a lot of success on the middle-of-the-road circuit. Had he come along 20 years earlier he might have been a much bigger star.

What I remember most about the story that came out of the Jack Jones interview was what you might call a rookie mistake on my part. Jones' big record hit at that point was "Lollipops and Roses," written by Tony Velona. The features department at the Beacon Journal included only four other writers or editors. All four were older than me by a generation or two; older and much wiser. As the kid, I was the target of whatever jokes they made about young people and their terrible taste in music.

In order to make a point (that really couldn't be made through the example I selected), I called attention to the lyrics in "Lollipops and Roses." In describing the song, I think I even used the phrase "dripping with good lyrics," whatever that was supposed to mean.

And then I dispensed a sample:

Tell her you care each time you speak.
Make it her birthday each day of the week.
Bring her nice things, sugar and spice things,
roses and lollipops and lollipops and roses.

My co-workers had grown up on Rodgers and Hart or Rodgers and Hammerstein, Johnny Mercer, Frank Loesser, and Cole Porter. And here I was quoting a songwriter named Tony Velona. As far as they were concerned, I might as well have quoted the lyrics to "Louie Louie."

And as I reflect on it now, I can 't say that I disagree with them.

 
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