When I was on the radio in 1968 I got to snoop through the new albums that arrived at the radio station and listen to them. One very nice surprise with that process was the first album from a Philidelphia hard rock group that called itself Nazz after a song by the Yardbirds. The initial single from the group was Open My Eyes, which made use of phasing. The writer and guitar player on the single was Todd Rundgren, who also wrote the B-side of the single, Hello, It’s Me.
Nazz recorded two albums and parts of a third album before Todd and the group parted ways in 1969. The remaining members finished the third album, after which Nazz was no more. Todd, fortunately, went on to a long-lasting career. Todd was unhappy with the production of the Nazz albums and proceeded to learn all he could about engineering and producing albums.
Todd recruited Soupy Sales’ two sons (Hunt and Tony) to play drums and bass and overdubbed vocals and guitars and recorded Runt, his first solo album (you can debate whether Runt was the name of the album or the name of a trio). In 1970 the first single from the album was We Gotta Get You A Woman. The single reached #20 on the Hot 100 in early 1971.
Todd released four more singles before his remake of Hello, It’s Me was peaked at #5 in 1972.
Todd produced or engineered albums and singles for an endless line of bands and recorded both solo albums and albums for Utopia, a group he formed in 1973. He also performed as a guitar player for three of Ringo Starr’s tours.
In a strange twist of fate, the song he may be most famous for is Bang The Drum All Day. While the record only reached #63 in 1973, it is used a great deal at live sporting events (especially by the Green Bay Packers).
Todd is also part of an upcoming 2019 tour commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the Beatles White album. The assortment of musicians reproducing the album in concert and performing a few of their own songs includes Todd, Micky Dolenz of the Monkees, Christopher Cross, Jason Scheff from Chicago, and Joey Molland from Badfinger.