Terry Cashman (b. Dennis Minogue, 5 July 1941) and Tommy West (b. Thomas R. Picardo Jnr., 17 August 1942) were record producers, songwriters and also recording artists. Best known for producing all of the hit recordings by the late Jim Croce, they also recorded under numerous names between the 50s and 70s and produced several other artists. West’s musical career began in 1958 when he formed a group called the Criterions (with Tim Hauser, later of Manhattan Transfer) in New Jersey, USA. They recorded four singles, none of which reached the charts. While attending college, the group changed its style to folk and its name to the Troubadours; West also joined the university singing club, where he met Croce. Cashman also started out in a vocal group, the Chevrons, which recorded two singles. After numerous other music business pursuits, Cashman was hired to head ABC Records’ publishing department. He met Gene Pistilli, a songwriter, and hired him. The pair wrote ‘Sunday Will Never Be The Same’, a hit for Spanky And Our Gang and recorded a single under the name Gene and Tommy. In March 1966 the pair met West and the trio soon formed. Together they recorded numerous singles as Cashman, Pistilli And West for ABC in 1966-68. They briefly changed their name to the Buchanan Brothers and recorded several singles and an album for Event Records in 1969, two of which charted, before reverting to the CP&W name in 1969 and recording several other singles and an album for Capitol Records. West persuaded Capitol Records to sign Croce and his wife Ingrid, and Cashman, Pistilli and West produced the couple’s only Capitol Records album together. In 1970-71, Pistilli recorded with Manhattan Transfer on their first singles and album and left Cashman and West to go with that new outfit.
Cashman and West continued as a duo, recording a chart hit as Morning Mist in 1971 and releasing two albums and a number of singles under their own names on Dunhill Records in 1972. Their ‘American City Suite’ reached number 27 that year. In 1973, Croce’s career took off, and Cashman and West concentrated on their work with him. When Croce died in 1973, the duo resumed their own career, releasing a final album together in 1974. (A fourth album was never issued.) By the following year, they had begun recording solo albums. They also ran the Lifesong Records label, which signed Dion and had a US Top 10 hit with Henry Gross’ ‘Shannon’ in 1976. In 1981, Cashman wrote and recorded ‘Talkin’ Baseball’, a novelty song that did not hit the charts but has become a cult favourite in subsequent years.