Make us your home page

This '80s cover of 'The Lion Sleeps Tonight' could cause insomnia




While Milli Vanilli caught all the flack for being a lip-synched act, they were far from the only group to commit that crime in the '80s. We start of this week with a two-parter about Tight Fit, one of those groups that you probably missed back in the day, and their big U.K. hit The Lion Sleeps Tonight.

You would hard pressed to find a song that is sung with more jubilation than The Lions Sings Tonight. Whether it's the 1961 chart-topping version by The Tokens or Timon and Pumbaa singing it in The Lion King, The Lions Sleeps Tonight and its famous  "wim-oh-weh, wim-oh-weh"  always seems to bring joy.

Ken Gold's brainchild Tight Fight scored a big hit in the U.K. with a medley of '60s song called Back To The '60s that even briefly charted in the U.S. In 1982, Tight Fit released The Lion Sleeps Tonight and it was a smash, hitting No. 1 in the U.K. and many other European countries. However it did not chart in the U.S.

With The Lion Sleeps Tonight being a hit, the band were recruited to appear on England's Top Of The Pops. Since session singers sang on The Lion Sleeps Tonight, Tight Fit's brain trust decided to give a great look to the group when they hired models Steve Grant, Denise Gyngell and Julie Harris to lip synch on TOTPS and even film a video for the song. The video for The Lion Sleeps Tonight is among the most guilty pleasures of early '80s videos as it's all there to be made fun of: the loin clothes, suggestively dressed jungle girls and perhaps the worst lion and gorilla costumes ever made. 

There are countless versions of The Lion Sleeps Tonight with covers by artists ranging from Brian Eno To R.E.M. So what became of Tight Fit? Tune in tomorrow for the surprising answer.

[Last modified: Monday, November 14, 2016 6:50am]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours