Tight Fit

Tight Fit

Profile:
British pop trio from the 80's.

In 1981, record producer Ken Gold came up with the idea to record a single made up of a medley of 1960s songs. The medley trend was in full swing at this time, following the success of Starsound and their Stars on 45 singles. He put together a group of male/female session singers and released "Back to the 60s" under the group title, Tight Fit. The song became a hit in the summer and reached No.4 in the UK Singles Chart. Instead of the sessions singers who sang on the record, a group of actor/ singers including Lowri-Ann Richards and Robert Pereno, were hired to front the group when Tight Fit first appeared on the BBC's music show Top of the pops. A follow-up, "Back to the 60s Part 2" was released soon after and it reached No.33 in the UK Top 40.

Later in the year record producer Tim Friese-Greene recorded a version of the song "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" with another group of session singers. The song was released in early 1982, again under the name Tight Fit. The song gained instant attention and so a new group was formed to front it. Dancer, singer and male model Steve Grant was teamed up with female singers Denise Gyngell and Julie Harris. The song reached No.1 in the UK for three weeks in March 1982 and the lineup were catapulted into sudden and unexpected stardom.

Satisfied that this lineup could actually sing in their own right, Friese-Greene produced their next single, "Fantasy Island" - a song by The Millionaires which had been in the Dutch Eurovision Song Contest heats. The song, in a very similar vein to pop group ABBA, also became a success, reaching No.5 in May 1982.

The group then set about recording an album as well as rehearsing for their first tour. A third single was released in August. "Secret Heart" was not as big as a success as the previous two and stalled at No.41. The debut album was released soon after, but coincided with both Harris and Gyngell leaving the group. Both unhappy with their contract, they claimed that they were not receiving any royalties from their hits and were being paid a paltry wage for their work. Swiftly two new female singers, Vicky Pemberton and Carol Stevens, were employed to take their place and the group released another single, "I'm Undecided" - a song from the album, with new vocals. The song failed to make the UK Chart and this signalled the end of Tight Fit's brief pop stardom. In an interview, Harris stated that the public did not take to the new lineup and had she and Gyngell been still with the group, it would have likely been a hit.

The following year, Tight Fit released one more single - a cover of Stephen Stills' "Love The One You're With". Under the banner, Steve Grant with Tight Fit, the song completely missed the chart and the group duly split-up.

After Tight Fit:

Grant, Harris and Gyngell all tried to launch music careers outside Tight Fit following their departures. Harris released two singles in 1983: "123" (not the same song as "One Two Three" which she sang on the Tight Fit album), under the name Julie and the Jems, and "Escargot a la Bongo" under the name Chopper Harris. Chopper Harris were contestants on The Freddie Starr Show Case and won their heat with the aforementioned song. They went on to come second in the final with the song "The Dolphin Dive". Gyngell teamed up with her two brothers under the name, He, She, Him, and released a single "Try a Little Tenderness". Grant released some solo singles ("Conviction" (with Earlene Bentley) and "Run for Cover") and in 1986 joined a male three-piece group, Splash!. They released a single "Que-est ce que C'est". Grant and Harris both appeared on the charity single, "Doctor in Distress" by Who Cares in 1985.

Steve Grant's background was in musical theatre, to which he returned afterwards. In the 1980s he appeared in productions of On the Town and Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, and in the 1990s he appeared in productions of Kiss Me, Kate and Miss Saigon at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in London, where he was a part of the cast at various stages between 1992 and 1999, when the production closed. Since 1999 he has lived partly in London and partly in Southern Spain. For a number of years there was a rumour that Grant had died, but this is untrue. It has been suggested that the rumour originated in a mix-up with the lead singer of Baltimora (who died in 1995) due to the similarity of the image each portrayed in their most well-known hit.

Reformation:

In 2008, members Denise Gyngell and Julie Harris reformed Tight Fit as a touring band, playing nightclubs around Britain. From 2010 they began touring in a show called "Back to the Eighties", performing many well-known songs from the 1980s as well as their own hits. Steve Grant later appeared with them at some gigs until he returned permanently in 2010. Together they undertook some recording work with an updated version of "Fantasy Island" being released as a promotional single. They took part in an episode of Pineapple Dance Studios for Sky TV that aired in 2010. On 2 June 2015 the band announced that they had released a new album called "Together" on Almighty, their first album in 34 years. On the band's website it is stated that Steve Grant, Denise Gyngell and Julie Harris hold the trademark to the name Tight Fit in relation to all music and publishing.
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Variations:
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Artist

Tight Fit Discography Tracks

Albums

Tight Fit Back To The Sixties Volume Two (Album) Tring International PLC Italy 1981 Sell This Version
Tight Fit Back To The 60's (Comp, Album) Jive Canada 1981 Sell This Version
Tight Fit Tight Fit (Album) Jive Canada 1982 Sell This Version
ALMYCD102 (CD), ALMYCDR102 (CDR) Tight Fit Together(CD, Album + CDr, Album, Ltd) Almighty Records Ltd., Almighty Records Ltd. ALMYCD102 (CD), ALMYCDR102 (CDR) UK 2016 Sell This Version

Singles & EPs

Tight Fit Back To The 60's (Single) Jive France 1981 Sell This Version
Tight Fit Back To The 60´s Part II (Single, Maxi) Jive UK 1981 Sell This Version
Ld A 8130 Passengers (2) / Tight Fit Passengers (2) / Tight Fit - The Last Romantic / Back To The 60's(7", Jukebox) Durium Ld A 8130 Italy 1981 Sell This Version
Tight Fit The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Single, Maxi) Jive, Jive Portugal 1982 Sell This Version
Tight Fit I'm Undecided (Single) Jive UK 1982 Sell This Version
Tight Fit Secret Heart (Single) Jive UK 1982 Sell This Version
Tight Fit Fantasy Island (Single, Maxi) Jive Scandinavia 1982 Sell This Version
JIVE 13X Tight Fit Fantasy Island(7", Single) Jive JIVE 13X Canada 1982 Sell This Version
Ld A 8141 Tight Fit / Fausto Papetti Tight Fit / Fausto Papetti - The Lion Sleeps Tonight / Primo Amore(7", Jukebox) Durium Ld A 8141 Italy 1982 Sell This Version
Steve Grant (3) with Tight Fit Steve Grant (3) with Tight Fit - Love The One You're With (Single) Jive UK 1983 Sell This Version
6.14946 Tight Fit The Lion Sleeps Tonight / Back To The 60's(7", Single) Jive 6.14946 Germany 1987 Sell This Version

Compilations

550 117-2 Tight Fit Back To The Sixties(CD, Comp, P/Mixed) Spectrum Music (2) 550 117-2 Germany 1993 Sell This Version
EMPRCD570 Tight Fit The Best Of Tight Fit(CD, Comp) Emporio EMPRCD570 UK 1995 Sell This Version

Miscellaneous

PUMPCDS020 Tight Fit Now & Then(CD, Smplr, Ltd) Pumpin' UK Records PUMPCDS020 UK 2010 Sell This Version