Sunday, 14 July 2019

Venedig im Regen - Thomas Forstner

Thomas Forstner represented Austria at the Eurovision Song Contest on two occasions: in 1989 with the song 'Nur ein Lied', and in 1991 with this song, 'Venedig im Regen'. Forstner was probably chosen again because of his impressive fifth place in 1989, but things didn't go so well two years later. The saccharine 'Venedig im Regen' came in last.

In the hilarious book 'Nul points' by Tim Moore, dedicated to those Eurovision artists who scored the titular zero points, there is an attempt to contact Thomas, to no avail. His career was already in decline in 1991, and after one final album ('Hautnah', released in 1994) he disappeared from the Austropop music scene.

My collection: 7" single no. 6137
Found: Discogs.com, received July 12, 2019
Cost: 5 euro
Tracks: 'Venedig im Regen' / 'Venedig im Regen (instrumental)'

Mrs. Caroline Robinson - Springtime

Springtime was formed by Norbert Niedermayer, Walter Markel, Gerhard Markel and Erwin Broswimmer. They released two albums, 'Springtime' (1977) and 'Lonely road' (1978). But their biggest claim to fame was their Eurovision Song Contest appearance in 1978.

Representing Austria, they sang 'Mrs. Caroline Robinson'. The song did not make a big impact, as they finished in 15th place in a field of 20 competitors. No wonder, then, that the band broke up soon afterwards.

My collection: 7" single no. 6136
Found: Discogs.com, received July 12, 2019
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Mrs. Caroline Robinson' / 'Honey, bye, bye'

Gute Nacht Freunde - Inga & Wolf

Many people in the Netherlands are familiar with the song 'Gute Nacht Freunde', because it has been the closing song of a popular radio programme for decades, in the version by Reinhard Mey, who wrote the song. It was a hit for him in 1974, and reached number 14 in the Dutch Top 40.

However, it was originally written by him for the German national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest in 1972. Inga & Wolf performed the song, but finished in fourth place, so they didn't go on to represent their country. That honour went to Mary Roos with 'Nur die Liebe lässt uns leben'. Still, this is a charming song and belongs in my collection, despite only being 'von der Vorentscheidung'.

My collection: 7" single no. 6140
Found: Discogs.com, received July 12, 2019
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Gute Nacht Freunde' / 'Das Stundenglas'

Saturday, 6 July 2019

Popcorn '88 (The Woodstock remix) - T.I.C.

When I bought this single, I bought it together with this one, thinking that there had to be a difference between the two. And there is: this single features the 'Woodstock mix', which can also be found on this 12" single. The sleeve is slightly different, but most of all... the record company is different!

This single was released on the Arista label, a major label at the time, whereas the other one was released by the independent T.C. Records. There is no information about which single came first - just like there is no information about T.I.C., the act that created this version of 'Popcorn'. Well, at least I have both 7" singles, and that's what I wanted.

My collection: 7" single no. 6134
Found: Discogs.com, received July 5, 2019
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'Popcorn '88 (The Woodstock remix)' / 'Talk about love'

Popcorn ('88 remix) - T.I.C.

When I bought and described the 12" single of T.I.C.'s 'Popcorn '88' almost two years ago, I stated that there were only ever two versions of their version of the Gershon Kingsley classic. But somehow I ended up buying two 7" singles of this track and I found out that I was wrong.

The 12" single features a 4'40 minute version of the '88 remix, whereas this single contains the '88 remix in an abridged 3'33 minute version. And that's great, because I really wanted to have this track on a 7" single - and to have a different edit is a nice bonus. But it gets a little weirder...

My collection: 7" single no. 6134
Found: Discogs.com, received July 5, 2019
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'Popcorn ('88 remix)' / 'Talk about love'

Sunday, 30 June 2019

The man with the child in his eyes - Inside moves

No less than 17 years ago, I bought 'The man with the child in his eyes' by Inside moves on a 7" vinyl single. I was not entirely impressed with this version of the Kate Bush classic, but somehow I was still intrigued by this 12" single of the same song.

This 12" single adds one track: the so-called 'Stringapella mix'. It disposes of the shuffly Soul II Soul dance beats, and makes it a more ballad-type track. A worthwhile addition to my collection of Kate Bush covers, although I still feel this is not one of the best ever.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received February 19, 2019
Cost: 3 pounds
Tracks: 'The man with the child in his eyes' / 'The man with the child in his eyes (Stringapella mix)', 'I wish'

Saturday, 29 June 2019

Ein Bisschen Frieden - Nicole

I dare say that no Eurovision Song Contest collection is complete without this maxi single. Although Nicole's 'Ein Bisschen Frieden' certainly isn't the best song ever to come from the Contest, it has become rather immortal, for instance because of the fact that the young girl spontaneously sang her winning song in several languages after securing the top spot in the Contest in 1982.

I already had Ein Bisschen Frieden, A little peace, La paix sur terre, Een beetje vrede, En smule fred and Un poco de paz on single, but this 12" single features a medley that strings all of them together - well, except the Danish version. But for all its polyglottal glory, the sleeve of this 12" single still spells the word 'Merci' wrong.

My collection: 12" single [unnamed]
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, May 24, 2019
Cost: 2,5 euro
Tracks: 'Ein Bisschen Frieden/A Little Peace/La paix sur terre/Een beetje vrede/Un poco de paz' / 'Thank you, merci, danke (German/English/French/Dutch version)'

When I think of you (The David Morales '95 remixes) - Janet Jackson

When A&M Records released 'Design of a decade', a compilation album featuring all the hits Janet Jackson recorded on the label, they didn't just release that album and two singles, but also did an intensive series of remixes for the club market.

This promotional 2 disc set of 12" singles features new remixes of the hit 'When I think of you', all of them created by David Morales. It is great to hear these remixes, although after a while you do get the feeling that mister Morales could have been more imaginative than just create six pretty similar remixes.


My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received March 27, 2019
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'When I think of you (Morales House Mix '95)', 'When I think of you (Drum mix)' / 'When I think of you (Jazzy Mix)' // 'When I think of you (Crazy Love mix)' / 'When I think of you (Classic club mix)', 'When I think of you (Incredible Boss dub)'

Still dream - Beyond

Also known as 'Kate Bush Goes Trance', this track by Beyond was released on a promotional single-sided 12" single in 1999. It features samples of the track 'Cloudbusting'. Kate didn't give the makers permission to use the sample, and so the track remained unreleased commercially.

I bought this 12" a few months ago and didn't yet include it into this blog. It's high time that I do, because it is an interesting take on a classic song. The vinyl could have been cleaner, but I never know what life these discs have had before they enter into my collection...

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received March 27, 2019
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'Still dream'

Friday, 28 June 2019

When you wish upon a star - Scrumpy 'n Dumpy

Leigh Harline and Ned Washington wrote 'When you wish upon a star' for Walt Disney's 1940 adaptation of Pinocchio. The original version was sung by Cliff Edwards in the character of Jiminy Cricket, and is heard over the opening credits and in the final scene of the film. The song has since become the representative song of The Walt Disney Company. It won the 1940 Academy Award for Best Original Song. It was also the first Disney song to win an Oscar.

This single, released in 1972, contains a cover version of the song by Scrumpy 'n Dumpy. It is probably one of the most bizarre cover versions of the song. The minds behind this duo were Peter Shelley and Marty Wilde. They were probably just having a laugh when they released it, as you can hardly take this single seriously. It may surprise you, however, that despite this lack of seriousness and its obvious 'novelty record' status, this single has become very difficult to find - and pretty expensive when you have to buy it. As a collector, I had to get my hands on it, of course - even if this copy came without the original picture sleeve. Who can resist a Marty Wilde record in whatever shape or form?

My collection: 7" single no. 6133
Found: Discogs.com, received June 28, 2019
Cost: 4 pounds
Tracks: 'When you wish upon a star' / 'The Scrumpy 'n Dumpy boogaloo'

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Will you still be there? - Howard Jones

Howard Jones' record company Elektra made the right call in the USA when they released this song as a single. 'Will you still be there?' is one of the best tracks on his 1987 album 'One to one', and the acoustic version of the song (included on the B-side here) adds some intimacy that some may find lacking in the electronically-driven original version.

Over here in Europe, three singles were taken from the album, with the record company favouring the intimate - and also intensely beautiful - 'Little bit of snow' being favoured over this track. I didn't know about the existence of this single, but I added it to my 'wantlist' on Discogs a few months ago. I'm glad I got to buy it finally from an American dealer who obviously took great care of his items - this single looks and sounds as if it was released last week instead of in 1987!

My collection: 7" single no. 6131
Found: Discogs.com, received June 26, 2019
Cost: $2
Tracks: 'Will you still be there?' / 'Will you still be there? (acoustic)'

Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Caribbean rock - Malcolm's Locks

Another single that I bought mainly for the B-side here. Malcolm's Locks was a group consisting of Antonio Augusto, Curvin Merchant, Lee Gates, Livingstone Wright, Liz Mitchell, Malcolm Magaron, Micho Plaza and Stuart S. Fahey. They released one album and two singles in the mid-Seventies. Magaron was a singer of the Les Humphries Singers who left the group before it's official end due to financial differences with Les Humphries. He was the boyfriend of Liz Mitchell, who went on to become a member of Boney M.

The B-side of this single features a version of 'Brown girl', which was released as 'Brown girl in the ring' by Boney M a few years later. Arranger Peter Herbolzheimer accused Frank Farian of stealing his arrangement for the song, for which Farian claimed credit on that single. The court case ran for more than 20 years in Germany.

My collection: 7" single no. 6130
Found: Discogs.com, received June 24, 2019
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Caribbean rock' / 'Brown girl'

Fremder - Didi Zill

Eight years ago I bought a cover version of 'Video killed the radio star' by Didi Zill. I'm not sure if I already knew back then that Didi also covered a Marty Wilde composition. 'Hoch lebe Rock 'n' Roll' is a German version of his composition 'Bring hack Rock 'n' Roll'.

But, even though that title features prominently on the cover of this single, it is not the A-side, but the B-side. The honour of being an A-side goes to the German schlager-type song 'Fremder'. And that song is based on the song 'Stranger' by Kris Kristofferson.

My collection: 7" single no. 6129
Found: Discogs.com, received June 24, 2019
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Fremder' / 'Hoch lebe Rock 'n' Roll'
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