On this date in 1952 American singer-songwriter-musician, and the frontman of the Knack, Doug Fieger, was born. He would have been 68 today.
Fieger was raised to fame via “My Sharona”, the debut single by the Knack and released in 1979 from their album Get the Knack. It reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart and was number one on Billboard’s 1979 Top Pop Singles year-end chart.
It was certified gold by the Recording Industry of Association of America, representing a million copies sold, and was Capitol Records’ fastest gold status debut single since the Beatles’ “I Want to Hold Your Hand” in 1964.
When Doug Fieger was 25 years old, he met 17-year-old Sharona Alperin, who inspired a two-month-long run of songwriting, as well as becoming his girlfriend for the next four years. They were engaged at one point, but never married.
Fieger recounted that “it was like getting hit in the head with a baseball bat; I fell in love with her instantly. And when that happened, it sparked something and I started writing a lot of songs feverishly in a short amount of time.”
In addition to being the inspiration for the song, Sharona Alperin posed for the single’s picture sleeve holding a copy of the Knack’s debut album Get the Knack.
Fifteen years later, in 1994, “My Sharona” gained renewed interest when it was featured in the film Reality Bites.
Fieger released two solo albums. First Things First was released in 1999. Hankerings, a Hank Williams tribute, was released posthumously in 2010.
Fieger died of cancer in 14 February 2010 aged 57.
Happy birthday, dawg!