The Knack’s 1979 rock hit came along at a perfect time, after a decade of mostly soft rock and disco. It had the beat, it had the hook and quickly it became the uncurable earworm, before we even knew what an earworm was.
Today’s the band’s name often appears in lists of “one-hit wonders” but the story behind the muse who inspired the song is quite interesting.
A LOVE STORY
Sharona Alperin is currently a Los Angeles real estate agent and inspired the hit when she was just 17 and joined the list of music-inspiring women named, Peggy-Sue, Donna, Barbara Ann, Michelle, Sara and so on.
Sharona met The Knack’s lead singer/guitarist Doug Fieger, when she was a student at LA’s Fairfax High School. She recalls he had a visible physical reaction to her and soon invited her to band gigs and eventually to a cafe where he confessed his love for her. She told him he was crazy because he had been with someone for 9 years and she was in love with her boyfriend. Fieger, 11 years her senior, persisted.
The obsessed Fieger began singing her name, including to a guitar riff the band was hanging on to and trying to turn into a song. Musically, the rest is history.
Personally, the 2 eventually got together and Sharona traveled the world with The Knack, appearing on the cover of the band’s Sharona single 45 rpm record. The romance lasted until she was 21 but they remained friends. Fieger died of cancer in 2010. Sharona was at his bedside and was on stage to speak with family and friends at Fieger’s House of Blues funeral. Her website is MySharona.com.
This week the song is 35 years old.
Today when Alperin meets new people and clients about half will say “MY Sharona” out loud. She shares her story with them and often gets their story of hearing the song and associated memories of the day.
There was a point back in the day when I just couldn’t hear the song anymore. Today it’s great to hear the song once in a while, and greater now that I know the back story.