Suvarna Garge (Editor)

1 2 3 (Len Barry song)

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7" single

October 1965

Blue-eyed soul, pop

Decca 31827 Brunswick 05942 (UK)

John Medora, David White, Len Barry

"1 - 2 - 3" is a 1965 song recorded by American blue-eyed soul singer Len Barry, who co-wrote the song with John Medora and David White. The recording's chorus and accompaniment were arranged by Jimmy Wisner. The single was released in 1965 on the American Decca label. The writers were sued by Motown Records at the time, claiming that the song is a reworking of Holland-Dozier-Holland's "Ask Any Girl" released by The Supremes as the B-side to their single "Baby Love" the year before. They denied the claim, but after two years of litigation, agreed to give the Motown writers 15% of the song's writing and publishing royalties. Holland-Dozier-Holland are listed as co-authors by BMI. The personnel on the original recording included Vinnie Bell, Bobby Eli and Sal Ditroia on guitar, Joe Macho on Bass, Artie Butler on Percussion, Leon Huff on piano, Artie Kaplan on sax, Bill Tole and Roswell Rudd on Trombone, Lee Morgan on trumpet, Fred Hubbard on clarinet, and Bobby Gregg on drums.

"1-2-3" reached number two in the US Billboard chart and number three on the UK Singles Chart. "1-2-3" also went to number 11 on the Billboard R&B chart. It sold over one and three quarter million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.

It was also a Top 10 hit in both Australia, where it went to number seven, and in Ireland, where it went to number eight.


  • Jane Morgan covered the song for the easy listening market. Her version reached No. 16 in 1966 on the Billboard Easy Listening chart and spent nine weeks on the chart.
  • In 1980, the disco/dance group Salazar, peaked at number 60 on the US Billboard Hot Dance/Disco chart with their version of the song.
  • In 1981, John Paul Young covered the song on the album, The Singer.
  • In 1994, it was sampled in Scottish musician Edwyn Collins' single A Girl Like You, becoming the singer's biggest solo hit.
  • The song is played in full after a Detroit Red Wings player scores a hat trick during a home game at Joe Louis Arena.
  • References

    1-2-3 (Len Barry song) Wikipedia