The very talented UK act Fancy is one of the most overlooked footnotes to mid70’s music history. The band Fancy was comprised of three of the most serious studio musicians that you could find in the UK, and they had high hopes of forming one of England’s finest rock and white funk bands, but producer Mike Hurst talked the three session musicians into having a former PENTHOUSE PET, Helen Court, work with them to do a highly sexualized version of the old 1960’s hit for The Troggs, “Wild Thing”. The Troggs were a very unique band in themselves, and essentially the first punk band ever to make the charts with their hit. But, the highly sexualized rework of “Wild Thing” was so controversial that after Hurst got it recorded, he couldn’t find any UK record labels that wanted the song, it was just too hot to handle in their view. That left the states. And Hurst was able to get the song released as a single on the smaller record label, Big Tree Records. The song hit gold here in the U.S. despite only peaking at #14 on the charts, and was finally released in the UK, but got very little airplay.
PENTHOUSE PET Helen Court was replaced with Australian singer Anne Kavanagh, but the band seemed to be typecast by the single “Wild Thing” and had a hard time being taken seriously despite two more fine quality rock albums released after the first album, WILD THING. Fancy was also one of the best white funk bands ever as well, capturing well that sound as well as hard rock, but two other acts, Wild Cherry and The Average White Band and to some extent the later disco act, K.C. & The Sunshine Band, all got a lot more respect and praise for their white funk acts. Fancy just couldn’t get any traction with either hard rock or the white funk sound.
About the only significant thing that happened for any of the musicians associated with Fancy was that drummer Les Binks eventually joined Judas Priest and played with that significant hard rock band.
Apparently, while the one highly sexualized single gave this band one good listen, they just could never get that second listen by anyone, despite their immense talent. “Wild Thing” became both a blessing as well as a curse for this band.