The Archies – Sugar, Sugar


Sugar, Sugar” is a song written by Jeff Barry and Andy Kim, produced by Barry and recorded by The Archies, a fictional bubblegum pop band from Archie Comics. It was released as the group’s third single on the Calendar Records label on May 24, 1969, rereleased on the Kirshner Records label in July 1969, and included on their second albumEverything’s Archie. In the autumn of 1969, it topped both Billboard‘s Hot 100 (for four weeks) and the UK Singles Chart (for eight weeks), ranking number one for the year in both America and the UK. It is the most successful bubblegum pop single of all time, and is widely regarded as the apotheosis of the late-1960s/early-1970s bubblegum music genre. In mid-1970, R&B/soul singer Wilson Pickett achieved success on both the US soul and pop charts with a cover version.

The Archies version


Produced by Jeff Barry, the Archies’ recording of “Sugar, Sugar” features a group of studio musicians managed by Don Kirshner, former music supervisor to the MonkeesRon Dante provided the lead vocals, accompanied by Toni Wine and songwriter Andy Kim. Together they provided the voices of the Archies using multitracking. The single was initially released in late May 1969 on Kirshner’s Calendar label (as with the Archies’ two previous singles), achieving moderate success in the early summer in several radio markets. When re-released in mid-July 1969 (with pressings also on the Kirshner label), it attained enormous success nationwide across several months. The track was also made available (along with two other Archies singles) on the back of boxes of Post breakfast cereal Super Sugar Crisp. “Sugar, Sugar” features on the LP Everything’s Archie – the second album credited to the Archies, released in November 1969.

Upon the song’s initial release Kirshner had promotion men play it for radio station personnel without revealing the group’s name, as the Archies’ previous single, “Feelin’ So Good (S.K.O.O.B.Y.-D.O.O.)“, had peaked at No. 53 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. In an article published in The Washington Times, lead vocalist Ron Dante recounts that the label was removed from the record. It was taken to a top radio station, 1260 KYA in San Francisco, where the program director was told: “Just play it! It’s a mystery group.”

“Sugar, Sugar” is written in the key of D major.


In the issue of Billboard magazine dated September 20, the single started a four-week run at number one on the Hot 100, replacing the Rolling Stones‘ “Honky Tonk Women“. It spent a then-lengthy 22 weeks on the Hot 100 (longer than any other single in 1969), and was one of only ten singles to spend 12 weeks in the Top Ten during the decade. It topped Billboard‘s year-end list of the Top Hot 100 Singles of 1969. In August 1969 the record was certified gold by the RIAA for sales of one million. (In 1989 the gold threshold was lowered to 500,000.) In 2018 “Sugar, Sugar” ranked 81 in Billboard’s Hot 100 60th Anniversary chart.

Between late October and mid-December 1969 the single spent eight weeks at the top of the UK Singles Chart. “Sugar, Sugar” was awarded a gold disc in January 1970. In February 2024 the song was certified Silver by the BPI for selling 400,000 units since it was made available digitally in November 2004.

In the chart dated September 13, 1969, “Sugar, Sugar” topped the RPM 100 national singles chart in Canada, where it remained for three weeks. It also peaked at number one on the South African Singles Chart. On February 5, 2006, “Sugar, Sugar” was inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, as co-writer Andy Kim is originally from MontrealQuebec.


Certifications and sales

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Germany 500,000
Mexico 300,000
United Kingdom (BPI)
1969 original release
Gold 1 000 000
United Kingdom (BPI)
2004 digital re-release
Gold 400,000
United States (RIAA) Gold 3,000,000
1969 sales
 Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.


The studio musicians on the Archies song are: