Pop Rock Music
The song “Mony Mony” is credited to Tommy James and Bo Gentry, Ritchie Cordell, and Bobby Bloom. They had laid down the tracks to this high-energy, feel-good song, but they needed a catchy name. They were noodling in their brains along the lines of “Hang On Sloopy” and “Bony Maroney.” Tommy James went out on the terrace to his apartment with Ritchie Cordell, and they saw the sign on the Mutual of New York Building, which had its letters “MONY” lit up. And that was that. James said that if they had looked in the other direction, the name might have been Hotel Taft.
Anyway, in 1968, the single went to #1 on the U.K. Singles Chart, #3 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, and #3 on the Canadian Singles Chart. The song was also released in 1968 on their album titled Mony Mony. There have been numerous covers of the song, including versions by Billy Idol, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Amazulu, Status Quo, The Scenics, and The Beach Boys.
(For more information about Tommy James and The Shondells, there’s James’s book Me, the Mob, and the Music: One Helluva Ride with Tommy James & The Shondells It’s a fun read.)