Date: August 20th, 2012
Cate: rediscovered
Tags: , , ,  

The Gentle Touch

The Gentle Touch is an unknown pop-psych group with female vocalists, who released 3 singles on American label Kapp in 1967-68. Best known of these seems to be the final one featuring a version of “Be Young, Be Foolish, Be Happy” popularized by soul group The Tams in the same year. Their first single was actually a radio jingle written for a jewelers, called “A Maier & Berkele Diamond Ring”. It was first released locally by the company themselves, before Kapp picked it up and had them rework it as “My One and Only Diamond Ring” and issued it with a new b-side.

Their middle single was first introduced to me through a cover version by Greek group The Happy Balloon, whose only album otherwise consists of much more well-known sunshine pop compostions, such as “Temma Harbour”. I heard the original on the Lost Jukebox series, and it remains one of my favourite songs. The image above is from a recent ebay auction, but the 45 seems easier to find as a UK release on London (their only international release as far as I know, which says something of the song’s quality, written by one Fred Haber). At least that’s the version I just secured a copy of.

The fact that the jewelers, who existed until recent years, were from Atlanta, Georgia, suggests that the group were of similar origins. Here’s their discography. Not to be confused with the Toronto group of the same name, whose lone 45 on RCA Victor has been compiled on Wyld Canada.

Kapp 836: “My One and Only Diamond Ring” / “Rain, Rain, Rain”, 1967
Kapp 871: “Among the First to Know” / “Merry Go Round”, 1967
Kapp 882: “Be Young, Be Foolish, Be Happy” / “Rainbows “, 1968

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  1. August 20th, 2012

  2. “My One and Only Diamond Ring”/”Rain, Rain, Rain” (released June 1967)*small article in Billboard about the release during that month.

    “Among The First To Know”/”Merry Go Round” (November 1967)

    *not sure about exact month of 3rd single

    The Gentle Touch featured two sisters Sue & Patty Nunn


  3. August 28th, 2012

  4. I have a London Records issue of “Among The First To Know”. I’m not sure if they released the other 2, though.

    cheers, brogues


  5. heavensaboveheavensabove  
    September 5th, 2012

  6. brogues, no i think that was only one on london. mine should turn up this week!

    thanks for the info colin!


  7. August 30th, 2014

  8. My sister and I are the two sisters who recorded A Maier and Berkele Diamond Ring, aka My One And Only Diamond Ring, Among the First to Know, Merry Go Round, Be Young, Be Foolish, Be Happy, and more! We changed our name to Saturday’s Photograph when we moved to Columbia Records, if memory serves. We released A Gentle Loving San Francisco Man with them, again, if I am remembering correctly. It’s cool to find this on the internet. We both still live in Atlanta with our families.


  9. August 27th, 2017

  10. @ Sue Nunn
    Among the First to Know is still one of my favorite songs of all time. I created a CD with my favorite songs on it back in the early 90s and to this day. I have transferred the songs to an MP3 player so I can listen while cutting the yard. Thanks for making this great song. I own the other two singles as well, but honestly have not listened to them except for when I first purchased them.


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