My Sharona – The Knack – 1979

The Knack’s 1979 #1 hit My Sharona had the distinction of selling a million copies faster than any other debut single since The Beatles’ I Want to Hold Your Hand in 1964.

i recognise that

Don’t you love those riffs that are immediately recognisable? Smoke on the Water, Whole Lotta Love, Pinball Wizard, Lola – there must be hundreds of them.

The My Sharona riff was bouncing around inside the head of Berton Averre, The Knack’s guitarist, long before he joined the band.  The problem was he couldn’t think of any words to go with it. When The Knack formed he played the riff for Doug Fieger, the group’s lead singer. He loved it and was determined to make it into a song but, like with Berton, ideas evaded him, until…

would the real sharona please reveal herself

In 1977 Doug met Sharona Alperin and fell instantly in love. He said later,

It was like getting hit in the head with a baseball bat; I fell in love with her instantly. And when that happened, it sparked something and I started writing a lot of songs feverishly in a short amount of time.

Doug claims that My Sharona was written for his girlfriend in  just 15 minutes.

As for Sharona, she and Doug went out for about four years but eventually separated and married other people. They did, however, remain close friends.

Sharona now works as a real estate in Los Angeles. Her website address is – I wonder how many times she introduces herself and gets the response; “Ba ba ba ba ba-ba ba-ba ba-ba, My Sharona…”?

And, by the way, it’s the real Sharona on the cover of the My Sharona single.

what about the knack?

The Knack were an American New-Age band formed in Los Angeles in 1975. While they stayed together as a band for a long time and were active in the years, 1978–1982, 1986–1992, 1994 and 1996–2010, they never managed to repeat the success of their debut single.

doug rip

Doug has left us. He died of cancer at home in Los Angeles February 14, 2010. He was 57 years old.

bruce rip

The drummer, Bruce Gary, went on to have a very successful career as a studio and live drummer. He did studio work with artists such as Jack Bruce, Mick Taylor, Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Spencer Davis, Stephen Stills, Rod Stewart, and Sheryl Crow. Gary has also died – of lymphoma in 2006.

my sharona fax

  • Released in June 1979, My Sharona was The Knack’s debut single. It appeared on their album Get the Knack.
  • My Sharona hit #1 on the US singles chart and stayed there for six weeks. It was to top single of 1979.
  • No single since The Beatles’ I Want to Hold Your Hand in 1964 had sold a million copies, and so achieved gold status.
  • The New York Times called My Sharona, “an emblem of the new wave era in rock and a prime example of the brevity of pop fame.”
  • In 2008, My Sharona gained the #75 spot on Billboard’s Hot 100 All-Time Top Songs. It was also ranked #16 on the Top Billboard Hot 100 Rock Songs of the chart’s first 50 years.
  • The Knack did have a second minor hit entitled, Good Girls Don’t. It peaked at #11 in the US but made #1 in Canada. (You’d know it if you heard it!!)
  • A number of bands have covered My Sharona including Nirvana and The Ramones. Nirvana joined Pearl Jam (or was it the other way around?) in a live performance of My Sharona.  And, Pearl Jam once performed the song in Italian in Verona, substituting the title lyrics for My Verona (cute, eh!).
  • Weird Al Yankovic did a parody of this called “My Bologna.” It was the song that kickstarted his career in song parody.
  • My Sharona has appeared in a number of movies; Reality Bites, RocketMan, Full Throttle, Super 8, and the trailer for Charlie’s Angels.
  • After appearing in the movie Reality Bites in 1994, it was released as a single from the soundtrack and peaked at #94 on the US charts.
  • Quentin Tarantino wanted to use My Sharona in his movie Pulp Fiction but The Knack said, “no.”
  • My Sharona lyrics.

my sharona – the knack – 1979 – video

good girls don’t – the knack – 1979 video

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2 Responses to My Sharona – The Knack – 1979

  1. Miki says:

    “And, by the way, it’s the real Sharona on the cover of the My Sharona single.”

    haha – who could blame Doug for not being able to resist what’s inside that white singlet?!

    Great song!

  2. Greg.K. says:

    Ha! Actually, at the time of this photo and the song etc. Doug was 25, Sharona was 17.
    But, from all that is said about him, Doug was a lovely guy…

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