The Cowsills In Books

TV Rock
by Mark Bego
PaperJacks - August 1988


Page 159 - 160:
The Partridge Family

. . .

In 1967 a unique kind of pop-rock group called The Cowsills hit the music charts. They were unique because in reality they were a mother from Rhode Island named Barbara Cowsill, her four sons (John, Bob, Barry, and Bill), and her daughter (Susan). There had been family acts on the charts before, but there were no multi- generational rock groups. The closest thing around was the father-daughter duo of Frank and Nancy Sinatra singing their number 1 hit “Something Stupid” that same year.

The Cowsills sang great harmonies together, and as a unit they produced three Top Ten hits: "The Rain, The Park, & Other Things" (1967), "Indian Lake" (1968), and their version of the Broadway show title song "Hair" (1969).

What a great premise for a television show! Or so thought series creator Bernard Slade. With The Cowsills as a prototype,Slade set about to come up with a fictional suburban mom and her singing offspring. Voila! Enter The Partridge Family.

. . .

Who cared if the rest of the cast couldn't sing? David and Shirley sure could, and, teamed with a group of top-notch studio musicians, they began racking up the Gold records. Not only did The Partridge Family rival the chart success of The Cowsills - they eclipsed it!

. . .

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