Leiber and Stoller decided to do the producing themselves. We started recording with Tonight from West Side Story. I had never heard the song before and sang it differently from the way they knew it. They liked it and decided that would be the first single.
The recording had a predominant voice with background singing, as opposed to a four-person doo-wop type song. They felt the group should have a lead singer's name tagged on as well. I got a phone call one day and they said, 'OK, we've changed the name of the group. You're gonna be Binky Jones and the Americans.' They had this corny kind of humour – you've heard their Coasters records. So I said, 'No, I don't want to b Binky Jones for the rest of my life. I'd rather use the nickname that I've been called all my life – Jay. My real name is John but from the time I was three years old my grandfather used to call me JT and Jay eventually became the predominant part of my name.
(Source : sleeve notes to the 1990 CD compilation Come A Little Bit Closer – The Best Of Jay And The Americans]