When I’m With You – Sheriff

THIS DAY IN MUSIC…………………………………..on February 4th of 1989 a Rock and Roll oddity took place when a group that no longer existed had the top tune on the Billboard chart. “When I’m With You” had been recorded in 1983 by a Canadian group called Sheriff, but they split up in 1985. The music director at a Las Vegas radio station began playing the song in late 1988 and the record soon surpassed its original number 61 chart position. A couple of members of the group combined with three ex-Heart players and formed Alias, while the others had minor success in Canada as Frozen Ghost. By that time, former Sheriff members Lanni and bassist Wolf Hassell had formed a duo named Frozen Ghost, and declined to re-form the group. Sheriff’s lead vocalist Freddy Curci and guitarist Steve DeMarchi, who had both been working as couriers in the interim, subsequently formed the band Alias and charted the following year with the number-two hit “More Than Words Can Say“Sheriff’s keyboardist Arnold Lanni wrote the song after meeting Valeri Brown and falling in love with her. ‘I sat down, put my coffee on the piano, tinkled some ivories, and four minutes later 80 percent of the song was written. On Valentine’s Day I played the song for Valerie and said, “I don’t have anything, this is all I can give you right now. It’s yours.” Valeri loved the song; two years later she married me. Lanni also played the song to his bandmates in Sheriff. “The band really liked it, so we started playing it live. That was one of the last songs we recorded when we did the record. The producer said, ‘Is there anything else?’ I said, ‘There’s this song we play, it’s kind of a wimpy song.’ So we played it for him and he said ‘Yeah, that’s kind of nice.”