While barely into his teens the ambitious young man arrived in New York City in 1967 with $40 in his pocket and no idea how to pursue his dream of becoming a songwriter. He knocked on a lot of doors, offering his services, but soon returned home.
After writing a handful of songs, he began commuting to New York, doing odd jobs and earning money to make demos. Eventually, he met producer Jeff Barry and in 1968, signed to Barry's 'Steed' label. When none of his songs caught on, Kim signed with MCA in 1972, but once again, he failed to come up with any worthwhile material.
Finally, Kim and his brother Joe decided to start their own label, 'Ice Records'. His debut release was to have been his own production of "Baby, How’d We Ever Get This Way?", but a tape of the song was heard by the brass at Capitol Records, who offered him a contract and rushed the record into release. By April 1968, the song had sold 800,000 copies and made the U.S. Top 20.
As a follow up, the label issued another one of Andy's bubble-gum style compositions called "Shoot ‘Em Up Baby" which, despite being banned by certain stations that worried that it was either a drug song, or a song about guns (this was the year that Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. were both assassinated, and sensitivities in the U.S. were high), still managed to sell half a million copies.
By 1969, Andy was riding high on the A.M. Top 40 music scene and the succeeding single "Baby I Love You", reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and earned Kim his first Gold Record, selling in excess of 1.5 million copies. His success was acknowledged back home in Canada, where he won a Juno Award (Canada's Grammy) for "Top Male Vocalist".
Andy was also having success as a writer for other artists, when he and Jeff Barry co-wrote "Sugar, Sugar" and "Jingle Jangle" for The Archies as well as "Oh My My", "I Love You Better" and "Do You Feel It Too?" for The Monkees' album, "Changes".
He continued to hit the charts in the early 70's as an artist with "Jingle, Jangle" and a cover version of "Be My Baby" (#17). Kim toured the globe and in 1974, had a US number one record with the million seller, "Rock Me Gently". The follow-up, "Fire, Baby I'm On Fire" reached #28.
After his father died in 1976, Kim stopped recording and disappeared from public life until returning under the name 'Baron Longfellow' with two albums: a self-titled LP in 1980 and Prisoner by Design in 1984, as well as singing background vocals in the 1990 soundtrack to the movie 'Edward Scissorhands'.
Andy re-surfaced in 2001, writing a song with Ed Robertson of The Barenaked Ladies called "I Forgot to Mention", which was released and started to get airplay in the summer of 2004. He also had a hand in developing his own web site, www.AndyKimMusic.com
In March 2005, Andy received the annual Indie Award for Favorite Solo Artist during Canadian Music Week. That same year, the music video for "Love Is..." reached #1 at Bravo.ca. In 2009 Andy Kim was inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame.
In March 2010, E1 Music Canada released "Happen Again", his first album in over 20 years. The collection was released in the United States in April 2011.
Although his style of simple, light hearted tunes gave way to other forms of rock and roll, Andy Kim has taken his place in classic rock history by selling over 30 million albums.
Be sure to read Gary James' Interview With Andy Kim