1971 Lighthouse – One Fine Morning
Keyboard player Paul Hoffert and singer and drummer Skip Prokop met on a plane while flying from New York back to Toronto. They brainstormed forming a new group that would comprise a standard rock group base, a horn section, and even a classical string section.
They recruited an assortment of musicians they knew and recorded a demo. MGM Records in New York signed the group. When they signed with a manager, he undid the recording contract and moved the group to RCA Victor. They named the group Lighthouse.
The 13-member band performed shows beginning in 1969 and released their first album in June of that year, their second album in November, and their third album in 1970. A few of their early singles made the charts in Canada.
It was the group’s fourth album in 1971 that provided them with their first international hit. One Fine Morning was the title track from the album, and the single reached #2 in Canada and #24 on the US Hot 100 in 1971. The group spent at least 300 days touring to support the album and did an amazing job of reproducing their music in their live performances.
Lighthouse had an additional seven records reach the Canadian top forty, but only reached the top forty in the US one more time. The single Sunny Days peaked at #34 on the Hot 100 in 1972.
The band broke up in 1976, although guitar player/singer Ralph Cole put together a touring group using the Lighthouse name from 1978 to 1980. Many of the original members of the band reunited in 1992 and reformed as a ten-person group that still continues to tour. The band even released a new single in 2017 and is working on the release of a live album.
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