10 sha-na-na-na, sunshine records released by the Brady Bunch kids
Dig into the funky, fun 1970s discography of the Brady kids — and the actors that played them.
The Brady Bunch was no stranger to a tune. Everyone remembers the classic season-three episode "Dough Re Mi," when Greg pens a surefire hit entitled "We Can Make the World a Whole Lot Better." Of course, when the kids hit the studio, the puberty-struck Peter keeps cracking his line in "Time to Change."
Outside of the TV show, the Bradys were keeping up with the Partridges in the pop game. The gang cut a handful of records that showcased the singing talents of the elder, aspiring siblings — Barry Williams and Maureen McCormick.
While Barry Williams was no Barry White, he did continually make music throughout his career, from those early Brady tie-ins to Broadway to Eminem parodies.
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1. Merry Christmas from the Brady Bunch (1970)
The six children (and Tiger!) made their debut on this platter of carols (no pun intended). These are traditional noels such as "Silent Night" and "Away in a Manger," complete with ringing bells and choral backing. Though, due to the era, there's a faint odor of 1970s folk-rock to the production.
2. Barry Williams - "Sweet Sweetheart" (1971)
3. Eve Plumb "How Will It Be?" (1971)
Plumb's father, Neely Plumb, was a saxophonist, producer and record executive. Unsurprisingly, he gave his daughter a solo shot on this rare 45. "I had a birthday today. I'm 12 years old," Eve announces in the spoken-word intro to "How Will It Be?" We suppose that means it was either written or recorded on April 29, 1958? The flip side was the rather unfortunate "(Nicchi Sgnacchi Mucchi Mucchi) The Fortune Cookie Song."
4. Meet the Brady Bunch (1972)
The second full-length Brady outing featured those two cuts from "Dough Re Mi." On the album, Peter gets to finally hit his notes. And, for those who ever wanted to hear the Brady Kids rhyme "Helter Skelter" with "fallout shelter," the record features a hurried cover of "American Pie."
5. The Kids from the Brady Bunch (1972)
This cartoony outing aimed for a younger crowd. The cover features some fun puzzle representations of the tracklisting. See if you can figure out what the songs are. Hint: The first one is a Beatles cover. Take a listen to the funky interpretation.
6. Chris Knight - Meet Chris Knight of the Brady Bunch (1972)
With heavy use of wah-wah guitar, Knight positioned himself as the Isaac Hayes of the Brady Bunch on the jam "Good for Each Other," side B on this 45 single. Okay, maybe he going more for Michael Jackson. Well, fine, let's say Alan Osmond.
7. Phonographic Album (1973)
Like the Monkees, the Brady Bunch evolved into a more serious studio act as they aged. The bubblegum slowly transformed into breath mints. The maturing "kids" (Barry Williams was nearly 20 at this point) dipped into adult contemporary, covering the Seals & Crofts daydream "Summer Breeze," which honestly features impressive harmonies and some nice touches of keyboards and horns. This album received a vinyl (er, "phonographic"?) reissue in 2004, which underlines its quality.
8. Chris Knight & Maureen McCormick (1973)
Marcia and Peter teamed up under their legal names for a batch of funky folk-rock. McCormick outshines her fake half-brother, frankly, and the producers seemed quite aware of this, as Knight is mixed down. It could almost be mistaken for a McCormick solo record. She would eventually get around to that in 1995. Take a listen to "Spread a Little Love Around."
9. Maureen McCormick - When You Get A Little Lonely (1995)
Perhaps capitalizing on The Brady Bunch Movie, released that same year, Marcia, Marcia, Marcia grew up and got a twang, crooning a batch of country tunes. The title track pretty nicely sums up her solo debut.
10. Barry Williams - The Return of Johnny Bravo (1999)
Ah, just look at the spangled, sparkling jacket! Look familiar? It should. Barry slipped back into the persona of Greg, slipping back into his alter-ego Johnny Bravo. Thirty years after The Brady Bunch debut, he was still beaming tunes like "Sunshine Melody," but also rocking out with covers of "We Are the Champions" and "Hip to be Square."
Or maybe he's having a seizure.