The Strangeloves Finally Get Lucky With Sheep

Do you recall the odd and strange-looking band “The Strangeloves” ?  We’ll bet you recall and loved to dance to their two huge hits “I Want Candy” and “Night Time, Is The Right Time”….But, here’s the best part

During the 60’s British Invasion, The New York based, Strangeloves billed themselves as an Australian outfit to cash in on the mystique being attached to foreign groups. They made outrageous claims that they hailed from the fictitious farming  region of Armstrong, Australia ! They claimed that they were Shepherd’s in this remote ( nonexistent ) locale They went on to claim that they had made huge fortunes by developing a way to successfully clone sheep!!

The Strangeloves really weren’t a band, they were three New York songwriters / record producers. Bob Feldman, Jerry Goldstein and Rickard Gotterher….In 1963 the trio had just come off writing and producing the infectious “My Boyfriend’s Back”  by The Angels and tried to develop a series of girl groups but failed. However in 1965 they came up with the “Sheep Story” Put on “Sheep Herder duds” ? And Cut the two aforementioned songs and the joke was on us !

Later in the year, they recruited über Guitarist / Vocalist Rick Derringer, dropped all the Shepard B.S., renamed the band The McCoys and recorded and released the now classic, “Hang On Sloopy” which was actually “I want Candy” sideways !

Here’s a listen to “I Want Candy…

Scroll way down below to leave a comment!…




  1. 1. What is the name on the amplifiers? 2. What kind of keyboard is that? 3. I was playing gigs in 1965. I remember the band. 4. Thanks.

    • The “band” was the creation of Richie Gotherher, Jerry Goldstein, and Bobby Feldment a/k/a FGG Productions. In fact, there were about 8 musicians who did virtually all recording sessions for the songs released under the names The Strangeloves, The McCoys, The Sheep, and other lesser known band names.

      The amps in the photo were POWER-SONIC. And, the keyboard is Italian import with no branding.

      How do I know all this?

      I’m the guy in the middle of the photo in this article, and that’s my keyboard. I was known as “Niles Strange” in those days.

      • Hey Niles!
        Great to have you dropping in at SMS once again! More importantly, thanx for answering Steve Risher’s questions
        Please, don’t be a stranger! (no pun intended!)

    • Hey Steve,
      Welcome to SMS and there you have it, straight from Thee man Niles Strange!
      Great to have you join the conversation!
      Rick Shoemaker / SMS

  2. Okay now, picture this. 1964 11th grade English Lit. Mr. Josephs, a 20 something fresh out of college new teacher to the school, in the middle of the lecture blurts out: “Hang on Sloopy? Now that’s just dirty!”

    A brief silence and we are back to discussing Hester Primm and the “Scarlet Letter”.

  3. Actually, your account of the “Strangeloves” becoming the “McCoys” is totally untrue.

    Here are some facts:
    1. The Strangeloves were created by Feldman, Goldstein & Gotterher (a/k/a FGG Productions) who appear on the album cover.
    2. The studio musicians recorded all of the The Strangeloves’ songs and all of the songs of The McCoys.
    3. Hang on Sloopy was recorded long before FGG re-recorded the lead vocal of Ricky Derringer (real last name being Zerringer) and releasing that song under the name the McCoys. That song (Hang on Sloopy) is on the I Want Candy album.
    4. The Strangeloves road group (of which I was a member) was on the road at the same time as The McCoys and frequently shared the same stage.

    In the end, while there was a symbiotic relationship between The Strangeloves and The McCoys, the were, in fact, 2 different entities.

    • Hey Ken,
      First we’d like to tell you how proud we are to have Niles Strange (from The Strangeloves ) join the conversation here at SMS and shed a little more light on the intricate background of The Strangeloves and The McCoys and no one here is ever going to debate either band’s history with a former member! But to state that our” account of The Strangelove’s becoming The McCoys is totally not true” is unfair and in itself “Totally not true” What is true is the history of these two bands is so complicated Wikipedia contradicts itself and when you check Wikipedia’s simple summary of each band, the only “Associated Acts” Wikipedia lists for The Strangloves are The McCoys and The only “Associated Acts” Wiki lists for The McCoys is The Strangeloves couple that with Hang On Sloopy originally being recorded by the basic production team iof The Strangeloves, then added Rick Derringer and released that recording as The McCoys, is not only difficult to explain, but it sure sounds like one entity morphing into another to us! WELL! Now that we’ve probably lost all our readers, we humbly offer all apologies if we in anyway misrepresented the relationship between two of our favorite bands of The 60’s ! Or should we have said “One of our favorite bands of The 60’s
      OH SO SORRY! Sometimes we can’t help ourselves
      P.S. But Come On! You guys did pretend to be “Sheep herders from Australia”…Nuff said?
      Thanx Ken for being a good sport!

  4. Wasn’r “I Want Candy” a sort of Chuck Berry jam/rhythm riff type of jam!! I admit I liked the tune!! And the little musical break in the middle was cool too!
    Oh I woke up this a.m. with the song “Rock and Roll Hoochiecoo” on my brain!! Now I think that was Derringer??
    Thanx ” Shoe”
    the wood

    • Hey Wood,
      “Rock and Roll Hootchie Koo” YEAH BABY ! Now that’s a great record. Written and recorded by Rick Derringer, from 1973 and by the way featuring a couple of the original McCoys on the single. Rick had originally written for Johnny Winter, Johnny released it in 1970, but didn’t get much attention! However the Derringer record that we love made the top 10…….By the way Johnny is playing on Ricks record!
      Meanwhile, your on to something with “I want Candy” however it’s not Chuck Berry, it’s a stone cold rip of Bo Diddly! Especially his song “Bo Diddly’s a gun slinger”…
      However, let’s go back and listen to….”ROCK AND ROLL HOOTCHIE KOO

  5. THE McCOYS …. MIND BLOWN!!! I gotta say a BIG THANK YOU!!! Because for the last year my mind continued to periodacally kept comming up with “SLOOPY” playing in the background of the radio in my head and I COULD NOT THINK OF THE BAND!!! I finally googled just a few weeks ago and now you are discussing it! And Rick Derringer IS AWESOME!!! And didn’t he later have his own band??
    Thanx “Shoe”
    the wood

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