Book of Love: Susan Ottaviano (Lead Vocals), Ted Ottaviano (Songwriter/Keyboards/Vocals), Lauren Roselli (Keyboards/Vocals) and Jade Lee (Keyboards/Vocals) were part of the Sire/Warner Group from 1984 – 1993. They recorded four studio albums: BOOK OF LOVE, LULLABY, CANDY CAROL and LOVEBUBBLE.
Though the quartet – disbanded in 1993, they have regrouped to record several new tracks and re-mixes. This collection is the perfect compilation of the enduring dance and pop hits from their four albums. The collection also features new songs “Getting Faster”, “Try” and Bonus Track “It’s In Your Eyes” one of the first songs ever written by the group, but never recorded until now.
Friends since high school, Ted and Susan (who share the same last name but are not related) initially worked with Susan’s Philadelphia College of Art classmate Jade Lee in a band called Head Cheese in the early 80s. In 1984 Ted recruited fellow School Of Visual Arts friend Lauren Roselli and a quick chain of events secured Book of Love its breakthrough. It was Roselli who got a copy of “Boy” to DJ Ivan Ivan who himself had just scored a dance hit with “The Dominatrix Sleeps Tonight” and was looking for new projects. Ivan then passed it along to Seymour Stein, head of Sire Records. “When Ivan played Seymour the demo of ‘Boy’,” says Ted, “he went, ‘That’s the One I want.’ ” ” Boy”, anchored by pulsating keyboards, infectious hooks and a deadpan delivery told the tale of a girl who wanted to be where the boys are but is “not allowed”. An underground smash in NYC, this one track had secured the unknown group a recording contract and a support slot that introduced them to America.
They continued to produce a steady string of influential club hits. “I Touch Roses”, released in 1985 would eventually chart as a #1 dance single. On the self-titled 1986 album it featured not only the dance staples “Boy” and “I Touch Roses” but the dreamy “Modigliani (Lost In Your Eyes)” which also charted on the Top Ten and the ebullient “You Make Me Feel So Good”, Book of Loves’ first CHR radio hit. The bands warmth and vibrancy was obvious with Susan’s seductive vocals and Ted’s ethereal production work. Sticking to their art school backgrounds and post punk aesthetic, the album was a perfect pastiche of colors and flavors mixed with accessible pop sensibilities.
After a two-year opening slot for Depeche Mode as well as headlining their own tour, their second album, LULLABY was released. The first two tracks kicked open the door with the chart topping remix of Mike Oldfield’s “Tubular Bells (Theme from The Exorcist)” and the socially conscious “Pretty Boys & Pretty Girls” which was also a crossover on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles charts. The song became one of the earliest to address a new disease that was beginning to devastate NYC. “We talked about AIDS at a time when people were not talking about it,” Susan says.