The group from Wales turned out to be greatly popular, and followed by tragedy too. The group formed from another group called The Iveys in the 1960s; Bandfinger was created in 1968 by Pete Ham.
Pete was a songwriter, singer and played the guitar too. His first group dates back to 1961, but it was with the group Badfinger that he made his biggest impact. From the album The Magic Christian Music, which featured in the film called The Magic Christian. From that album came the song Come And Get It which was actually written by Paul McCartney. Needless to say it was on The Beatles Apple label.
Come And Get It opened up the film and was a million seller single. The film also featured other Badfinger (The Iveys) songs, including Rock Of All Ages and Carry On Till Tomorrow. The film starred Ringo Starr and Peter Sellers. The song made the UK top ten.
“No Matter What” was the next hit was written by the group and it got to No. 5 in the UK. Peter wrote and sung this song. The song caused DJ’s a lot of trouble as it had a false ending. Guaranteed to give the radio audiences a laugh when they DJ gets it wrong. The record company was not that happy to release it, but luckily for the group they did. The song came from the album No Dice which also had Without You on it. No Dice means not possible.
It was Tom Evans the band member that gave the album that name. Tom committed suicide in 1983 after arguments and court cases about the world royalties to the Without You song. He was already depressed fighting several cases. He also had in the back of his mind an argument ongoing with band member Mike Gibbins and the suicide eight years earlier of Pete Ham.
Without you was not a single hit for Badfinger. It was a hit for Nilsson, who had a worldwide hit with his version. It made the record company a fortune, but it has always been disputed on how the band had access to the royalties. The song won a Grammy and an Ivor Novello award.
Back in 1973 to 75, and for a few years the group was in constant court cases over the bands manager failure to sort out huge financial problems. Pete Ham could take no more. He committed suicide aged only 27 in 1975. In his suicide note he said that the business manager was responsible for his decision to kill himself. Stan Polley was that manager (he also managed Lou Christie). Polley is assumed held on to the money for Badfinger. The full facts may never come out as Polley died in 2009.
Day After Day was a 1972 hit from the album Straight Up and produced by Beatle George Harrison who died in 2001. Todd Rundgren also produced when Harrison left for a concert in Bangladesh. It was a U.S. hit in 1971 and a January 1972 hit in the UK. Pete Ham wrote this song, as he did the next and last chart hit called Baby Blue.
Baby Blue was about a woman Pete had dated whilst touring in the U.S. If you are in Europe you may never have heard of the single, well that is because it never got released in the UK. It was a big hit in the U.S. reaching No. 14.