Saturday, 28 November 2015

L'amour s'en va - Françoise Hardy

Françoise Hardy was born on January 17, 1944. She grew up in Paris. She had her breakthrough when she was just 18 years old with the hit 'Tous les garçons et les filles', which sold 700,000 copies in France alone.

She represented Monaco during the 1963 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest. 'L'amour s'en va' is a chanson, popular in the early years of the Contest. Hardy sings about a relationship which is conducted in the knowledge that love is a fleeting thing - however this does not seem to matter to either of the lovers involved, as they 'chase after it'. Hardy also recorded the song in Italian and German. She finished 5th in a field of 16 competitors.

My collection: 7" single no. 5808
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 21, 2015
Cost: 5 euro
Tracks: 'L'amour s'en va', 'Je pense a lui' / 'Comme tant d'autres', 'L'amour d'un garçon'

Listen to the song

Don Quichotte (The remixes) - Magazine 60

Once you get that line 'No señor, Don Quichotte y Sancho Panza no están aqui', you may fall victim to actually liking this song. The original single of Don Quichotte, released in 1985, has already been in my collection for almost 15 years, but this version was a new find for me.

Released in 1992, this single features two remixes of the track created by Yannick Rosco, a remixer and producer who was most active in the early Nineties. The cd-single, also released at the time, features two further versions: the original mix and a remix from 1990.

My collection: 7" single no. 5805
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 21, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Don Quichotte (Underground mix)' / 'Don Quichotte (Espagna mix)'

Listen to the song & Listen to the B-side

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Writing's on the wall - Sam Smith

With the latest installment of James Bond movies, 'Spectre' in the cinemas right now, these are exciting times for James Bond fans. Less so for the lovers of Bond themes: 'Writing's on the wall' was co-written and performed by Sam Smith, and we can only know him from his style of singing, which resembles the sound of a man who's in constant pain. Inexplicably, this song became the first James Bond theme to reach number one in the UK singles chart, although these days you can easily get to number one in the singles chart if you get more than a hundred downloads.

If after all this you think I hate this song, that's not necessarily true. It's nice enough but it is a bit too restrained for a James Bond theme, and although it easily surpasses the all time low of Another way to die, this song won't exactly be remembered in a decade from now. Unlike, of course, Adele's Skyfall.

My collection: 7" single no. 5803
Found: Amazon.co.uk, received November 11, 2015
Cost: £6
Tracks: 'Writing's on the wall' / 'Writing's on the wall (instrumental)'

Listen to the song

The same old way - Frankie Vaughan

Frankie Vaughan was born on February 3, 1928. He made a name for himself singing easy listening and traditional pop music, starting with 'The old piano roll blues' in 1950. Between then and the end of the Eighties, he released more than 80 singles. In 1955, he recorded what was to become his trademark song, 'Give me the moonlight, give me the girl'.

One of his singles, released in 1959 was 'The same old way', which like most of his singles after 1958 didn't become a hit. But I didn't buy this single for that song, I wanted to have it for the B-side, which was written by Marty Wilde and Ronnie Scott: 'You can't stop me dancing'. Vaughan died from heart failure in Oxford in 1999.

My collection: 7" single no. 5802
Found: Discogs.com, received October 28, 2015
Cost: £ 1
Tracks: 'The same old way' / 'You can't stop me dancing'

Listen to the song

Yo soy aquel - Raphael

One of my favourite singers of the early years of Eurovision is Raphael. He's got a voice that cuts through your soul and songs to match. I bought his Hablemor de amor years ago, but never found a reasonably priced copy of his other Eurovision smash, 'Yo soy aquel' ('I'm that one').

Raphael was born as Miguel Rafael Martos Sanchez in Linares, Spain on May 5, 1943. His musical career started in 1965 and continues to this day. 'Yo soy aquel' was a reasonable success: it finished 7th in a field of 18 competitors at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1966. He returned the next year with that other song, and finished one place higher.

My collection: 7" single no. 5799
Found: Revolver Records, Barcelona, September 22, 2015
Cost: 3 euro
Tracks: 'Yo soy aquel', 'Es verdad' / 'La noche', 'Hasta venecia'

Listen to the song

June bride - China Crisis

China Crisis recently returned with a crowdfunded album, and it's one of the best releases of this year I think - even if it didn't cause much of a media storm. Such is the nature of the band: they've gone on making their music quietly even after the massive success of songs like 'Wishful thinking' and 'King in a catholic style' had gone.

It was a big surprise to find a promotional 7" single for this band in a Spanish record shop. The song on it is even more of a surprise: it's 'June bride', a song from their 1986 album 'What price paradise', which was never actually released as a single anywhere. It could have been a single, and perhaps even a hit, because it's quite catchy, actually!

My collection: 7" single no. 5798
Found: Revolver Records, Barcelona, September 22, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'June bride' / 'June bride'

Listen to the song

Friday, 13 November 2015

Que tiempo tan feliz - Mary Hopkin

There are a lot of Spanish singles with translated titles on the sleeve - Bobby Goldsboro's Autumn of my life is an example - but when a sleeve announced 'canta en espanol', you can be sure that the artist has re-recorded their song in Spanish.

Mary Hopkin did this with her 1968 hit single Those were the days. I couldn't pass up on 'Que tiempo tan feliz', because the original is so beautiful and it would be interesting to hear it in a different language. All I need now is the Japanese version of The Police's 'De do do do de da da da'.

My collection: 7" single no. 5796
Found: Revolver Records, Barcelona, September 22, 2015
Cost: 3 euro
Tracks: 'Que tiempo tan feliz' / 'Gira, gira, gira'

Listen to the song

La source - Paul Mauriat and his Orchestra

Isabelle Aubret competed in the 1968 Eurovision Song Contest with 'La source', representing France. Paul Mauriat and his orchestra were quick to profit from the commercial success of the song, recording an instrumental cover version of it for a single release quickly after the Contest took place.

He did a similar thing the year before with L'amour est bleu. That single sold millions of copies, this single went by almost unnoticed in most territories.

My collection: 7" single no. 5795
Found: Revolver Records, Barcelona, September 22, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'La source' / 'Ne sois pas triste'

Listen to the song

The autumn of my life - Bobby Goldsboro

There are some singers that are blessed with both a unique voice and great compositions. I haven't heard much from Bobby Goldsboro during my life, but what I've heard has impressed me. His song Honey is an evergreen, of course, and Summer (The first time) always touches anyone who has a heart.

The autumn of my life is a similar work of art. I found this single during a few days in Barcelona. Whenever I go to a different city I check out the local record shops, and fortunately the second one I visited delivered some goodies. This was the only single I didn't know at all, but I was not disappointed: Bobby Goldsboro is a gifted man.

My collection: 7" single no. 5794
Found: Revolver Records, Barcelona, September 22, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'The autumn of my life' / 'Pledge of love'

Listen to the song

The Shang-a-lang song - Ruby Pearl and the Dreamboats

Marty Wilde wrote some catchy songs, verging on the naff sometimes. The title 'Shang-a-lang song' alone will have some people shudder. It doesn't exactly suggest a very 'deep' lyric, but it is still a pop song that will not leave your head once you've heard it.

It was released by Ruby Pearl and the Dreamboats on April 12, 1974, but never managed to reach the charts in the UK. As far as I know, this is the only single this band ever released. The song was also picked up that same year by French singer Sylvie Vartan, who had French lyrics written for her by Gilles Thibault.

My collection: 7" single no. 5793
Found: Discogs.com, received August 13, 2015
Cost: £ 2
Tracks: 'The Shang-a-lang song' / 'Holding you'

Listen to the song

Rub my tummy - Zenda Jacks

I've recently started buying songs that were written by Marty Wilde. Between his own career in the early Sixties and his daughter's career in the Eighties, he's been quite prolific. I have been able to find a few songs that were written by him, others are unavailable or too expensive, but I am pretty sure there's dozens more out there. (I'm always willing to receive donations by the way...)

One of my recent finds has been this single by Zenda Jacks, 'The goddess of rock'. The song 'Rub my tummy' is rather typical for the glam rock age: loud, proud and noisy. After her rather brief solo career, Zenda joined the trio Silver Convention, who represented Germany in the 1977 Eurovision Song Contest with the song 'Telegram'.

My collection: 7" single no. 5792
Found: Discogs.com, received August 13, 2015
Cost: £ 2
Tracks: 'Rub my tummy' / 'Party queen'

Listen to the song

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

In the night - Ben Cramer

In 1969, Marty Wilde released 'Diversions', an album of original songs written by himself and several collaborators. One of the songs on the album was Abergavenny, which was a hit in several European countries, but there was also the song In the night.

That song was covered that same year by Dutch singer Ben Cramer and released on this single. It spent three weeks in the 'bubbling under' chart of the Dutch top 40, but didn't become a hit. It was included on the album 'My world of music', released on the Omega label in 1969.

My collection: 7" single no. 5801
Found: eBay.nl, received September 29, 2015
Cost: 3 euro
Tracks: 'In the night' / 'Although you're gone'

Listen to the song

Night of the swallow - Kate Bush

After seeing Kate Bush live on stage in London, a little over a year ago, my bucket list was almost totally executed. There was only one thing left to do: get me a copy of her elusive 1983 single 'Night of the swallow'. A track from her excellent fourth album 'The Dreaming' (1982), it was only released in Ireland and copies of the single never made it to the Netherlands at the time. By now, the single almost always fetches premium prices.

In July this year, I finally got hold of a decent copy of 'Night of the swallow', after seeing a copy in Utrecht in April. That copy featured a torn square on the front sleeve; this copy is in excellent state. I have nothing more to ask for - which is probably why my record collection is growing less fast by now.

My collection: 7" single no. 5790
Found: Discogs.com, received July 23, 2015
Tracks: 'Night of the swallow' / 'Houdini'

Listen to the song

Jag är en astronaut - Linus Wahlgren

By all accounts, Ricky Wilde's I am an astronaut was a hit in Scandinavia, so it shouldn't come as a surprise that the song was covered a few times by Scandinavian artists. Unfortunately those singles are exceedingly hard to find - except if you're willing to part with considerable sums of money. But sometimes, in these days of the internet, you can get lucky.

I found a copy of Linus Wahlgren's 'Jag är en astronaut' (on yellow vinyl, no less!) on Discogs, the website where people not only describe their records, but also buy and sell them. Linus Wahlgren was born 10 September 1976 in Gustavsberg, Värmdö, Sweden. He is an actor an musical artist.

My collection: 7" single no. 5789
Found: Discogs.com, received July 9, 2015
Cost: 4 euro
Tracks: 'Jag är en astronaut' / 'Svart på vitt'

Listen to the song

Heimatpop EP - Heimatglück

The German punk rock band Heimatglück was founded in 1996 in Hamburg by Coco and Jana after their previous band Paradontax broke up. They recruited Felix, formerly from the band Tohu-wa-bohu, and started recording songs and performing live. The band still exists in the original lineup.

Their most interesting release - for me anyway - is their 2001 EP Heimatpop. It features five cover versions of Eighties tracks by Kim Wilde, Nena, Madonna, Slime (another German punk band) and Fehlfarben. The song 'Wasserglass' is the most interesting of the lot: a version of Kim Wilde's 'Water on glass'.

My collection: 7" single no. 5788
Found: Discogs.com, received May 2015
Cost: 3 euro
Tracks: 'Hamster', 'Wasserglass', 'Ich brenne ab' / 'Paul ist tot', 'Disco'

Listen to 'Wasserglass'

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Aina mun pittää - Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät

'Aina mun pittää' ('I always have to') is a punk song by a Finnish band of adults with developmental disabilities. They participated in this year's Eurovision Song Contest, representing their country. Some people felt it turned the show into even more of a 'freak show', after dinosaurs, transvestites, transsexuals, men with beards wearing dresses and lots of people wearing strange stage clothes, but in fact it was a bit of emancipation for the band. I felt they did a great performance, and their song was quite powerful.

Best of all, the song was released on 7" vinyl. As far as I know, it's the first Eurovision 7" single since Sébastien Teller's Divine in 2008.

My collection: 7" single no. 5786
Found: Discogs.com, received April 28, 2015
Cost: 6 euro
Tracks: 'Aina mun pittää' / 'Diaknoosi vammainen', 'Sofian lehto'

Listen to the song

Dreams are made for everyone - Wind

In 1992, Wind participated in the Eurovision Song Contest with Träume sind für alle da. And as with their other two entries, there is an English version of the song. I didn't know this until I found a listing of this single on the website of Fun Records in April. It was a nice discovery, and of course I ordered the single right away.

I've always been a sucker for translations of Eurovision songs by the original artists - although I still have to find Japanese singles of Udo Jürgens and Gigliola Cinquetti that apparently exist. 'Dreams are made for everyone' is a good translation of the original, and sounds almost identical to the German studio version.

My collection: 7" single no. 5785
Found: Fun Records, Berlin, received April 24, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Dreams are made for everyone' / 'One night only'

Listen to the song

Found you out - Daniela Simons

Eurovision singer Daniela Simons followed up her 1986 Eurovision single 'Pas pour moi' with several other singles. 'Found you out' was released in 1989 and sounds nothing like the Eurovision song. It is an attempt to reach the charts with danceable music.

It's a nice enough song, but it didn't chart anywhere, as far as I know. But I am open to any suggestions on where to find more information about this single.

My collection: 7" single no. 5784
Found: Fun Records, Berlin, received April 24, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Found you out' / 'Loving somebody'

Listen to the song

Sobran las palabras - Braulio

Braulio García was born in 1946 in Santa María de Guía de Gran Canaria, Canary Islands. He began his career in music in 1971, debuting in a local festival with a song called 'Mi Amigo El Pastor'. In 1976 he represented Spain in the Eurovision Song Contest with the song 'Sobran las palabras' ('Words are unnecessary'). He placed 16th in a field of 18 contestants.

Over the years he also participated in some other song festivals: three times at the Benidorm International Song Festival (1973, 1975 and 1981); at the Viña del Mar International Song Festival in 1979, where he won the main prize; or at the Yamaha Music Festival in 1982. He has written songs for, amongst others, other Spanish Eurovision singers José Vélez and Massiel.

My collection: 7" single no. 5783
Found: Fun Records, Berlin, received April 24, 2015
Cost: 1,5 euro
Tracks: 'Sobran las palabras' / 'A ti que hoy despiertas a la vida'

Listen to the song

Canzone per te - Sandra Simo

Sandra Simo was born as Sandra Studer in Zurich (Switzerland) on February 10, 1969. She represented her country in 1991 with this song, 'Canzone per te'. The song ended up in fifth place in a field of 22 contestants. The B-side of this single is 'Lo so', the song with which Sandra competed in the Swiss national final for Eurovision in 1990.

The singer became a major Swiss television personality, using her real name. In recent years she has hosted the Swiss and German national heats of Eurovision and has also provided commentary of the contest for German audiences in Switzerland.

My collection: 7" single no. 5782
Found: Fun Records, Berlin, received April 24, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Canzone per te' / 'Lo so'

Listen to the song

Monday, 9 November 2015

Goeiemorgen morgen - Nicole & Hugo

When I bought this single (along with a few others) the shop owner looked at the sleeve and said 'This is one of Belgium's finest Eurovision entries ever, isn't it?'. I could tell he meant what he said and it wasn't what I expected to hear. Eurovision is often met with ridicule, but the ridicule reserved for Nicole & Hugo's later entry Baby Baby was a especially harsh kind of ridicule.

It has to be said, however, that 'Goeiemorgen morgen' ('Good morning, morning') has a beautiful melody and the duo did a very decent performance of the song - considering the Seventies context of course. It's a shame, then, that they ended up on 14th place in a field of 18 competitors when they competed in the Contest in 1971.

My collection: 7" single no. 5780
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Goeiemorgen, morgen' / 'Er gaat altijd een trein'

Listen to the song

Ein Bisschen Frieden - Judy

The sleeve of this single makes much of the fact that Dutch singer Judy sang her cover of Nicole's 1982 Eurovision winner 'Ein Bisschen Frieden' in 6 languages. She was obviously old enough to pronounce Dutch, German, French, English, Spanish and Italian convincingly, even if the lyrics were probably written down phonetically for her.

As a cover version, this doesn't add much to the original song, it's just without the naive charm that would make Nicole win the Contest. This single comes across as a cynical ploy to cash in to someone else's success... but failing because it flopped of course. The less said about this single's B-side - in which Judy introduces herself in six languages - the better.

My collection: 7" single no. 5779
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Ein Bisschen Frieden' / 'Introduction'

Listen to the song

Waterloo - Abba

'Here he goes again', you sigh, reading the title of this item. But I have to confess that I never bought an original 7" single of Abba's famous Eurovision song 'Waterloo'. Yes, I do have the 2014 re-release and even the 2004 re-release, but the original single somehow never reached my record collection.

I corrected that mistake in part recently, when I bought the German and French pressings of the 1974 single. Of course there are some more versions to collect, and they will certainly appear on this blog when I get them, but I refuse to pay more than 1 or 2 euro for this single, which complicates matters somewhat. If I'd bought this single in the Eighties I would have paid far less as they were sold in every second hand shop in the world, but these days you have to rely on record fairs and everyone knows that the name Abba almost guarantees big sales numbers. Except for people like me, who aren't necessarily an avid fan of the band, but still want to get their hands on these old singles. Somehow, somewhere someone will hand over an old copy of this famous song for less than 'too much'.

My collection: 7" single no. 5778 / no. 5791
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015 / Discogs.com, received August 13, 2015
Cost: 1 euro / 2 euro
Tracks: 'Waterloo' / 'Watch out'

Listen to the track

Merci Cherie - Tino Rossi

Constantin "Tino" Rossi (29 April 1907 – 26 September 1983) was a Corsican French singer and film actor. Born in Ajaccio, Corsica, he was gifted with a voice well suited for opera. He became a tenor in the French cabaret-style. Later, he appeared in various movies. During his career he recorded hundreds of songs and he appeared in more than 25 films, the most notable of which was the 1953 production, 'Si Versailles m'était conté' directed by Sacha Guitry.

He remains the only French singer to have sold more than 700 million records. His disc "Petit Papa Noël" alone sold 80 million copies worldwide. This cover version of Udo Jürgens' 1966 Eurovision winner is less wellknown, but it's a beautiful rendition nonetheless.

My collection: 7" single no. 5777
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Merci Cherie', 'Bye, bye, bye (moi je reste)' / 'Parle-moi d'Ajaccio', 'Teresa'

Listen to the song

Un tout petit pantin - Les Parisiennes

Sandie Shaw didn't just record her Eurovision hit Puppet on a string in Spanish, a French version also exists. She recorded that version as Un tout petit pantin. And that version, of course, was covered by French artists.

In this case, Les Parisiennes, a group of four singers clad in sexy minidresses. Brought together by one Claude Bolling, they sang original songs written by him and Frank Gérard, but in 1967 they tried their hand at the Eurovision winner. During the Seventies the group broke up, but two of the ladies remained active in the entertainment business. Raymonde Bronstein had a solo career as a singer and Anne Lefébure was a presenter on the French TV channel FR3.

My collection: 7" single no. 5776
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Un tout petit pantin', 'Ah! Vivement ce soir qu'on s'couche' / 'Y'a comme un défaut', 'Grand prix'

Listen to the song

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Popcorn - Mister K

You'd almost forget, through all these Eurovision postings, that I have several other sub-collections within my record collection. And this is an addition to one of them: the many versions of 'Popcorn', the instrumental tune composed by Gershon Kingsley.

This single comes from the Czech Republic, where I ordered a few CD-singles, but this 7" single was a nice addition with almost no extra shipping costs. This version was actually released all over Europe, but this is my first 'Made in Czechoslovakia' single - and it is likely to be my last as well, because I don't know too many places to get such pressings. Mister K seems to be a certain Mathias Camison, a French guy who remains active in music to this day.

My collection: 7" single no. 5787
Found: Discogs.com, received May 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Popcorn' / 'Synthetic sister No. 1'

Listen to the song

Elle était si jolie - Alain Barriere

Alain Barrière (born Alain Bellec, 18 November 1935 in La Trinité-sur-Mer, Morbihan) is a French singer, who has been active since the Fifties and is known for participating in the 1963 Eurovision Song Contest. His song, 'Elle était si jolie', turned out to be by far the biggest seller of Barrière's career to that point.

He released his first album, 'Ma vie', a year later, and the title-track became a huge hit. In 1965 he was offered, and accepted, a leading role in a heist thriller, 'Pas de panique', alongside Pierre Brasseur. This would be his only venture into acting, but his singing career reached its peak in the latter part of the decade with a string of hits making him one of France's biggest stars and a sell-out live attraction. He remained popular until a decade later, when he got married and moved to the USA. Upon returning four years later, his popularity had waned and he had difficulty getting successful again. However, he continues to release albums to this day.

My collection: 7" single no. 5775
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Elle était si jolie', 'Le temps d'une valse' / 'Plus je t'entends', 'La route'

Listen to the song

'k Zen liever lui as muug - De Strangers

When Toto Cotugno won the 1990 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest with 'Insieme: 1992', the Belgian band De Strangers was quick to record a parody in their native language. Thus, ''k Zen liever lui as muug' was born.

The title roughly means 'I prefer to be lazy rather than tired', and is another stab at Eurovision songs done in a different way. And yes, it's another addition to my growing collection of Eurovision covers.

My collection: 7" single no. 5773
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: ''k Zen liever lui as muug' / 'Den baas hee altijd gelijk'

Listen to the song

Marionetas en la cuerda - Sandie Shaw

After winning the 1967 Eurovision Song Contest with 'Puppet on a string', Sandie Shaw recorded many of her tracks in Spanish, her record company probably smelling success in that region.

This EP features four tracks in Spanish, and is surprisingly titled 'Sandie Shaw canta en español'. The title was borrowed for a 2004 CD release, which features all of her Spanish language recordings. An astounding amount: 25 tracks.

My collection: 7" single no. 5765
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Marionetas en la cuerda', 'A los chicos les diras' / 'Otra vez sone', 'Dile a cualquiera'

Listen to the song

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Waterloo - Abba

Abba have released ten albums during their career - give or take a few - and literally hundreds of compilation albums. No excuse is too weird to release yet another picking of their classic tracks. Forget the love songs compilations, jubilee albums, greatest hits, best album tracks and even the box sets though: here's the real deal: another re-release of their classic Eurovision single 'Waterloo'.

This time, it's a picture disc released exactly 40 years after they won the Eurovision Song Contest with THAT song. I was hesitant to buy it because, well, I already have the song a few times - but this really is a pretty record. It's just so damn irritating that fans of Abba have to buy the same songs over and over and over again. Fortunately, I'm not an Abba fan in that sense of the word.

My collection: 7" single no. 5781
Found: Amazon.co.uk, received April 24, 2015
Cost: £ 5
Tracks: 'Waterloo (Swedish version)' / 'Waterloo (English version)'

Listen to the song

Adam en Eva - De Strangers

The Belgian band De Strangers are best known for their covers of Eurovision songs - on this blog anyway. I have bought quite a few of them on a previous visit to Chelsea Records in Antwerp, so when I went back in April this year, I found a handful more and I got them all. Sometimes I wonder why, but it's a collection of rare cover versions that you won't easily find anywhere else I guess.

This single features two Eurovision songs from 1977 with new Antwerp dialect lyrics by the band: 'L'oiseau et l'enfant', the year's winner, and 'A million in 1 2 3', the year's Belgian entry. Quite why these songs are suddenly about Adam and Eve and expensive coffee respectively is beyond me, but there you go.

My collection: 7" single no. 5774
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Adam en Eva' / 'Dure koffie'

Listen to the song / Listen to the B-side

D'harmonie van Boemmerskonte - The Strangers

The Belgian band The Strangers have featured on this blog several times already, but this single was a huge surprise for me: a cover version of Marty Wilde's 'Abergavenny'. There aren't that many covers of the song, especially not in the Antwerp dialect.

Like all their other cover versions, the Strangers have written their own lyric which has nothing to do with the Welsh city of the original song. And even for someone who understands Dutch, it's hard to find out what this lyric is about because the Antwerp dialect is pretty hermetic. So I guess it will remain a mystery. Nice music, though.

My collection: 7" single no. 5771
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, April 16, 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'D'harmonie van Boemmerskonte' / 'Camp'

Listen to the song

Waterloo - Gerd Michaelis-chor

Abba's legendary Eurovision song 'Waterloo' has been covered by various bands such as Bananarama and Doctor & the Medics, but this single features a cover by a East German choir - and that's a different kettle of fish.

Released on the state-owned Amiga label, the Gerd Michaelis-chor was famous for their performances of Schlagers, but they also recorded cover versions that were popular in 'Western Europe'. This was the time of the iron curtain, when people in Eastern Germany were not supposed to listen to just any old thing, after all.

My collection: 7" single no. 5770
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Waterloo' / 'I'm a train'

Listen to the song

I am the lady - Linda Williams

The Dutch entry for the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest, Het is een wonder by Linda Williams can easily be qualified as 'forgettable' and it's hard to see why anyone would think it had a chance on the Eurovision stage.

It's even harder to think of a reason why Linda Williams was made to record an English version of the song. 'I am the lady'. It is a weird piece of history, this single, and I'm happy to have found a copy - but it is a weird release in many ways.

My collection: 7" single no. 5768
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'I am the lady' / 'Don't need your flowers'

Listen to the song


Feggari kalokerino (Summer moon) - Yiannis Dimitras

Greek singer Yiannis Dimitras represented his country during the 1980 Eurovision Song Contest. His song was called 'Feggari kalokerino' ('Summer moon' in English), a ballad in which he tells the moon about how it makes him feel. During his performance on the Eurovision stage, he was accompanied on the piano by actress and pianist Sofia Houndra, who was not credited on-screen.

The song did pretty well in the Contest: it ended up on 8th place in a field of 20 competitors. The single was released in Europe by Philips. The record company chose to use a sleeve design similar to the one used for Cyprus competitors Island in the same year.

My collection: 7" single no. 5767
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Feggari kalokerino' / 'Feggari kalokerino (instrumental)'

Listen to the song

Congratulations - Cliff Richard

Cliff Richard has been in the news lately with shady accusations that involve minors and many of his colleagues have actually been indicted - but fortunately he remains innocent until proven guilty. Let's hope that he won't be guilty because it would certainly bring a cynical ring to hit singles like this one.

'Congratulations' was of course a Eurovision hit, and although Cliff Richard didn't secure the title in 1968 - the contest was won by Spain with the song called 'La la la' - it certainly became a big hit for him.'Congratulations' was actually recorded in Spanish, and this Spanish version appears on this single.

My collection: 7" single no. 5766
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Congratulations (Canta en espanol) / 'High 'n' dry'

Listen to the song


Monday, 17 August 2015

Second hand company - Peter, Sue & Marc

With Trödler & Co., Peter, Sue & Marc were hopeful to gain the number one spot at the 1979 Eurovision Song Contest. In fact, they were so optimistic that they decided to record an English version of their song, this 'Second hand company' which was even released in Sweden (as this pressing testifies). Like on the German version, they were suppported by Pfuri, Gorps & Kniri, names so insane that you couldn't make them up.

Although the sleeve design is a bit different you can spot the very same photograph at the center of it. There isn't much more I can say about this single really, you'd have to hear it to believe it. I guess I bought it for its curiosity value.

My collection: 7" single no. 5765
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Second hand company' / 'Coconut juice'

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Meine kleine Welt - Waterloo & Robinson

We're still stuck in the Eurovision Song Contest and in the Seventies on this blog. It is usually a pleasure but it becomes a bit of a hard slog when you listen to this 1976 entry from Austria by Waterloo & Robinson. Six years ago I wrote about My little world, which was the English version of this song, 'Meine kleine Welt'.

Although the song was performed in English at the Eurovision Song Contest, it was originally written and performed in German for the national finals in Austria. Until 2007 the duo remained together, but then they decided to focus entirely on solo projects. I haven't heard any of their songs except the ones on this single, and that's enough for me, to be honest.

My collection: 7" single no. 5764
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Meine kleine Welt' / 'Superstar'

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L'amore é un attimo - Massimo Ranieri

Massimo Ranieri appeared on this blog twice before: with his 1973 Eurovision entry 'Chi sara' and the French version of his 1971 entry 'L'amore é un attimo', which was entitled 'Pour un instant d'amour'. Here, finally, comes the original version, which was, like 'Chi sara', sung in Italian.And fate has been kind to me, as this is an original Italian pressing of that single.

As written before, the song finished fifth in a field of 18 competitors in Dublin, Ireland. Ranieri continues to make music: in 2013 his most recent CD 'Sogno e son desto' was released, which was a live album.

My collection: 7" single no. 5763
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'L'amore é un attimo' / 'A Lucia'

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Happy man - Cathal Dunne

A year before Johnny Logan won the Eurovision Song Contest for Ireland, the country was represented by Cathal Dunne, a singer who'd started his career in the mid-1970's. 'Happy man' was written and composed by himself, and it was a relatively successful entry, finishing fifth in a field of 19 competitors.

Apparently, this single was released on green vinyl in Ireland, but this is the rather more dull version pressed in Holland on black vinyl.

My collection: 7" single no. 5762
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Happy man' / 'Sweet woman of mine'

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Saturday, 25 July 2015

Amour amour - Plastic Bertrand

In 2010, Plastic Bertrand confessed that he didn't sing his biggest hit, 'Ça plane pour moi', himself. It is quite astonishing, then, that the singer, who was born in Brussels, still managed to stay in the music business long enough to participate in the 1987 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest.

In that year, he represented Luxembourg with the song 'Amour amour'. Unfortunately, that song wasn't nearly as surprising and exciting as that famous 1977 punk single. At the close of voting, the song had received just 4 points, finishing 21st in a field of 22 competitors.

My collection: 7" single no. 5761
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Amour amour (Version Française)' / 'Amour amour (English version)'

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Delisin - Cici Kizlar

Turkey debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1975. Judging from the cover of this single, you might think that it was with this song, but no: the country competed with the song 'Seninle bir dakika' by Semiha Yanki.

Cici Kizlar consisted of Şebnem Aksu, Birnur Bilginoğlu and Bilgen Bengü. Their song 'Delisin' ('You're mad') charmed the audience during Turkey's national final and actually shared first place. Because Semiha Yanki apparently got more votes from the professional jury, she was sent to Stockholm. However, 'Delisin' became a big hit in Turkey. The trio produced other singles in rapid succession. By the end of 1976, the group broke up. Bilgen Bengü was the only member of the group who continued music career afterwards.

My collection: 7" single no. 5760
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Delisin' / 'Rengarenk'

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L'histoire du bonheur - Ann Christy

The 1975 Belgian entry of the Eurovision Song Contest by Ann Christy appeared on this blog four years ago, in two versions: the original version 'Gelukkig zijn' and the English version 'Could it be happiness'. At the time, I thought these versions were the only two that existed, but thanks to a lucky acquisition, I know better now.

This single features the French version, 'L'histoire du bonheur'. As you can see, this single is also housed in a sleeve similar to the other two. It turns out there's a fourth version as well: the German 'Wenn keiner mehr zu dir steht'. Let's hope that one pops up somewhere for me too.

My collection: 7" single no. 5759
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'L'histoire du bonheur' / 'On ne peut se passer l'un de l'autre'

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Aspro-mavro - Alexia

Cyprus is hardly a superpower in music: there are no real big stars from the island and in Eurovision it has never managed to win, despite receiving those 'douze points' from Greece almost every time. In 1987, Alexia Vassiliou represented the country with this very decent pop song, 'Aspro-mavro'. The title means 'black and white'. The lyric describes how a girl remembers a man she saw on a train - but she can only bring the memory back by playing the piano.

At the close of voting, the song had received 80 points, placing 7th in a field of 22 competitors.

My collection: 7" single no. 5758
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Aspro-mavro' / 'Please me lover'

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This is the way - Dannii Minogue

I haven't had any comments about the many Eurovision Song Contest singles on this blog recently (Come to think of it, I haven't had any comments at all over the last few months!) but truth is, I have been buying almost nothing else recently. But there is always the odd exception, and here is one of them: a 1993 single by Dannii Minogue. Kylie's little sister, indeed.

While Kylie has had a career with some downs but mostly ups, Dannii's career is almost the other way around. 'This is the way' is a good example of her usual chart performance: it reached number 27 in the UK charts and number 45 in Australia. The main selling point of this single is not the tune - which, frankly, is quite mediocre - but the limited edition poster bag.

My collection: 7" single no. 5757
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'This is the way' / 'This is the way (The cool 7")

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Friday, 24 July 2015

Puppet on a string - Flip Henderson

Flip Henderson plays the trumpet in this instrumental cover of the 1967 Eurovision Song Contest winner, 'Puppet on a string'. The song was originally performed by Sandie Shaw, representing the United Kingdom. Many covers of the song exist, including one by a barrel organ which was featured on this very blog some time ago.

This cover version isn't exactly anything special, but whenever I see any covers of Eurovision songs I am always interested. Hence the inclusion of this in my collection.

My collection: 7" single no. 5756
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Puppet on a string' / 'Penny of happiness'

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Hora - Avi Toledano

Six years ago (wow, how time flies) I wrote about 'Hora' by Avi Toledano, a single I'd bought in 1982, just months after he'd participated in the Eurovision Song Contest. WIth my modest budget it was a feast to get any Eurovision song that wasn't a winner. Little did I know that three decades later I would be buying Eurovision singles in spades.

I came across this version of the single recently. I'd seen it before, but this version is usually rather expensive because of its inclusion of a French version. This time, however, the disc was a steal at just one euro. And so, it finally arrived into my collection.

My collection: 7" single no. 5755
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Hora (Version Française)' / 'Hora (Version Hébraïque)'

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Chi sara - Massimo Ranieri

'Chi Sara' ('Who Will Be With You') was the Italian entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1973, performed in Italian by Massimo Ranieri. The song was performed tenth on the night. At the close of voting, it had received 74 points, placing 13th in a field of 17 competitors.

Massimo Ranieri was no stranger to Eurovision: he participated in the 1971 edition as well, with 'L'amore E' Un Attimo'. Although I haven't featured that single on this blog yet, the French version can be found here.

My collection: 7" single no. 5754
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Chi sara' / 'Domenica Domenica'

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Nina - Stefan & Eyfi

The duo Eyjólfur Kristjánsson and Stefán Hilmarsson participated in the 1991 Eurovision Song Contest with the song 'Draumur um Nínu', representing Iceland. They appeared on stage as the second act of 22. At the close of voting, they ended up in 15th place.

Although the song did not fare too well in the contest it has remained one of Iceland's most popular songs of all time, still receiving regular airplay.

My collection: 7" single no. 5753
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 11, 2015
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Nina (English version)' / 'Nina (Icelandic version)'


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