Monday, February 19, 2018

Hüpiknukk: Heli Lääts 1932 - 2018

This week, on February 16, Estonian singer Heli Lääts passed away.

Avid Eurocovers readers may have noticed I'm a bit of a fan since I discovered her impressive list of Eurocovers.

Most of this article is from Januari 2007 from the Year Of The Puppet series (About coverversions of Sandie Shaws Puppet On A String).
 I changed a few things and moved it up as a little tribute to the legendary Estonian singer.
Heli Lääts was 85.

from the 2007 post: 
Hüpiknukk
Puppet On A String comes with a variety of titles in different languages. There's Sprellemann and Sprattelgumma, Paprikajancsi and Sätkynukke, and they will all be featured here in the Year Of The Puppet.

My favorite title for Puppet On A String is Hüpiknukk. Try saying it 10 times in a row, and fast.

Hüpiknukk is the Estonian version of Puppet On A String and this one is by Heli Lääts, one of the most popular Estonian singers from the 60's and 70's.

Heli Lääts has recorded many coverversions of international hits since the late 50's and most of her work has been released on cd in the past years. Another singer that would have graced the Eurovision stage very well if only…..

So it's not a surprise some Eurovision songs found their way to Heli Lääts' repertoire. So far I have located 19:
Sweden 1962 - Keväd ja paike (Sol och vår)
United Kingdom 1967 - Hüpiknukk (Puppet On A String)
France 1968 - Allikas (La Source) - update: Thanks Frank
Germany 1969 - Kaunid Balleriinid (Primaballerina) *
Monaco 1971 - Tänav, pink ja puu (Un banc, un arbre, une rue)
Netherlands 1975 - Ding-dinge dong (Ding a dong)*
France 1977 - Lind ja laps (L'oiseau et l'enfant) *

These sevens song can be found on 3CD Heli Lääts - Eesti Kullafond (Hitivabrik, rel 2004), still available from Apollo.ee
Kaunid Ballerinid and Tänav Pink Ja Puu can be also found on the 1979 LP Поет Хели Ляэтс (Poet Heli Lääts) on the USSR state owned Melodia label (Мелодия label). I nicked the picture from discogs.
Allikas was released on a mixed artists 4-track EP (also on the Melodia label)



In addition to the ones mentioned above there are a few that have been released digitally in recent years.
Netherlands 1969 - Trubaduur (De Troubadour)
Luxembourg 1972 - Pärast sind (Après Toi)
UK 1974 - Maailm on suur  (Long Live Love)
Luxembourg 1974 -Head Teed!  (Bye, Bye, I Love You)

And these have been recorded but I haven't found many details yet
France 1958 - Valss kaunil kevadpäeval [kevad on käes] (Dors Mon Amour) (excerpt here)
Netherlands 1967 - Mu ümber on kevad (Ring Dinge Ding)
Germany 1971 - See maailm (Diese Welt)
Ireland 1971 - Ühe päeva armastus (One Day Love)
Finland 1973 - Päikese Trummid (Tom Tom Tom)
Spain 1978 -Tule, tantsime koos (Bailemos Un Vals)
Germany 1980 - Teater (Theater)
Germany 1982 - Et oleks rahu (Ein Bisschen Frieden)



Tracks marked * can also be found on the CD Unustamatu Eurovisoon, a compilation CD from 2002. It features 22 Eurovision songs covered in Estonian, dug up from the vaults to celebrate the Contest being held in Tallinn. (Hitivabrik, 2002)
Kaunid Balleriinid was also released in a remixed version by DJX on a 12"inch vinyl and DJX CD Tähesadu DJX Episood 1. He mixed the song with Spillers Groovejet minus Sophie Ellis Bextor

Links and sources
ERR/ETV news
Heldur Karmo net - A website which lists all songs translated by Estonian lyricist Heldur Karmo
Unfortunately no Heli Lääts at Spotify, but you can find some Audio's at Youtube.

Sanremo 65 - Tutte Le Vincitrici

Sanremo is 68 by now, but I just noticed this 4CD album with coverversions of all 65 winners from 1951 up to 2015 of the Mother Of All Songcontests, the Festival Della Canzone Italiana di Sanremo.

The first Sanremo festival was in 1951 and Nilla Pizzi won with Grazie Dei Fior.
Sanremo quickly became a successful stage for Italian singers and songwriters.
The Eurovision Song Contest which premiered in 1956 was modelled on the Italian music spectacular.
The Sanremo festival became closely connected to Eurovision straight away: The winner of Sanremo went on to be the Italian Eurovision entry from 1956 to 1966.

In 1967 things changed. Sanremo winner Non Pensare A Me by Claudio Villa was disqualified because the new Eurovision regulations ruled the song had been released too early. It was replaced by Non Andare Piu' Lontano after the Eurovision rehearsals started.
After that the actual Sanremo winner only went to Eurovision on four occasions.
Sometimes the Sanremo winning artists would pick another song or someone who ended lower on the Sanremo table represent Italy in Europe. In the 70's and 80's the Eurovision choice was often Sanremo unrelated.


To celebrate the 65th anniversary of the Sanremo contest a 4CD was released by Azzurra Music in 2016. It includes all Sanremo winners recorded by new, young and upcoming artists. 15 of the 65 songs are Eurovision entries.
The 4CD is still available at Azzurra Music, but for you digital youngsters, it's also available through your favorite mp3 outlets, or if you're broke, Spotify.

These are the Eurovision songs on the Sanremo 65 Tutte Le Vincitrici 4CD:
(For the full tracklist see picture below)
Year     Title  - original artist - artist on the Sanremo 65 4CD


1956 Aprite le finestre - Franca Raimondi - Serena Carpi
1957 Corde della mia chitarra - Nunzio Gallo - Marco Tascone
1958 Nel blu dipinto di blu - Domenico Modugno - Swinger Twinger
1959 Piove (Ciao ciao bambina) - Domenico Modugno - Blues Coffee Trio ft Teresa
1960 Romantica - Renato Rascel - Animarma ft. Eniko
1961 Al di là - Betty Curtis - Carlotta ft. Olly Vincent
1962 Addio... addio - Claudio Villa - Michael Vaiasinni
1963 Uno per tutte - Emilio Pericoli - Kabaré Voltaire
1964 Non ho l'età (Per amarti) - Gigliola Cinquetti - Francesca Beccaria
1965 Se piangi se ridi - Bobby Solo - Mercoledi Notte
1966 Dio come ti amo - Domenico Modugno - Luca Bui
1972 I giorni dell'arcobaleno - Nicola Di Bari - Errequatro
1997 Fiumi di parole - Jalisse - Ibrevidiverbi
2013 L’essenziale - Marco Mengoni - Proclama
2015 Grande amore - Il Volo - S.Ma.C.K (Stefania, Carlotta, Karol)

Monday, February 12, 2018

Karin Bekker's Without You

Digital Release Image Sonder Jou.
Here's a lovely new release from South Africa. For her new album Sonder Jou (Without you) Karin Bekker recorded six songs from the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest. Four songs are in Afrikaans, two in English.

Sonder Jou is available now through iTunes, Amazon, 7digital and Spotify to name a few digitessen.
A CD release is expected soon. (More details when I have them...)

Below is a list of the Eurocovers on Sonder Jou but the whole album is worth your while. The album also includes last summer's single Vriendskap (Friendship)

Karin Bekker's Eurocovers
Klaar met jou (Finished with you)
Nuwe Begin (New beginning)
Sparkle (in English)
Jy’s Die Een (You’re the one)
Genoeg (Enough)
Lionheart (in English)


Links and sources:
Thanks to Roy
Karin Bekker Website, Fan-Facebook

Some more:
If you can't get enough, Frikkie Van Biljon recorded the 2017 Slovenian entry.
On My Way by Omar Naber becomes Elke Tree (Every step). Out on iTunes, Spotify and what have you. Frikkie's Facebook
And one more for the road: Hanco recorded the Australian 2017 song (Don't come easy by Isaiah Firebrace) in Afrikaans. His version Dis Nie Maklik Nie (It's not easy) is also out on all important digital sources. Hanco's Facebook

Monday, February 05, 2018

Anno Domenico Revisited: Volare 60

The 2018 re-issue
This year on January 9, Domenico Modugno would have celebrated his 90th birthday.
And on Februari 1 his Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare) won the 1958 Sanremo contest.
Carosello Records and Edizioni Curci will launch a series of releases throughout 2018, to honor one of the greatest artists in the history of Italian music.

An exclusive vinyl single is released of Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Limited edition of 1958 copies).
It features the original 1958 version and an instrumental of the 1967 re-recording.
The single comes in a black inner sleeve and also includes the sheetmusic. Nice!
(Fonit/Carosello 8034125 848027)

A new compilation album (3CD) is out on Februari 9.
Two discs have the hits of Modugno including Nel Blu…, Piove (Ciao Ciao Bambina) and Dio Come Ti Amo.
A third disc features interpretations of Modugno hits by Italian artists like Il Volo (Piove), Gianna Nannini (Volare), Gianni Morandi, Ermal Meta, Massimo Ranieri, Ornella Vanoni, Milva, Mina, Enrico Ruggeri.

Some facts about Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare)
The song was written by Domenico Modugno (music) and Franco Migliacci (lyrics). The most used English lyrics are written by Mitchell Parish.
The song was written in 1957 but was first launched at the eighth San Remo contest (Final Februari 1st) where it was performed twice. Once by Domenico Modugno and once by Johnny Dorelli.
Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu won the San Remo song contest and Modugno represented Italy in the third Eurovision Song Contest in 1958 in Hilversum, The Netherlands at the 12th of March.

Modugno was a relative newcomer back in 1958 and didn't have a stitch to wear. He had to borrow the blue tuxedo he performed in.

The new 3CD
The Eurovsision Song Contest was won by France's Dors Mon Amour by André Claveau and Modugno ended third with 13 points. 2 times 4 from Belgium and Germany and five times 1 point. And zero poing from Denmark and Luxemburg.

But Modugno laughed all the way to the bank, as his song , soon known as Volare (after the refrain) became one of the top 100 best selling singles of 20st century, a US #1 hit, A double grammy winner and one of the most covered songs with several lives in most decades since the original recording.
Volare won the first ever Grammy for a song in 1958. 

Domenico Modugno went on to participate in Eurovision two more times. In 1959 with Piove (Ciao Ciao Bambina) and in 1966 with Dio Come Ti Amo.
Modugno also wrote the 1962 entry Addio Addio which was performed by Claudio Villa.
Domenico Modugno passed away in 1994 at the age of 66.

In 2008, when Volare was 50, Eurocovers ran a series of articles of the many coverversions of Volare. If you use this link you can find all Anno Domenico related posts.
Back of the 60th anniversary sleeve


Sunday, December 24, 2017

Kamferdrops - Ein Bisschen Frieden



Here's a cozy little weird video by Norwegian outfit Kamferdrops (Heidi Musum to her mom). It's a thoroughly modern take on the well known 1982 German Eurovision winner originally sung by Nicole.
The Kamferdrops have also released a Norwegian version titled En Liten Fågel (A little bird), you can find that video here.

Both versions are out through your local digitessen including your favorite streamers.

Kamferdrops will be participating in the Swedish Eurovision selection Melodifestivalen with the song Solen Lever Kvar Hos Dig.


The 2018 Eurovision Collectors Guide The Lisbon Collection is operational!, you can bookmark now.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Stranger in Paradise: Urban Turban & Shamim Naghedi

At Eurocovers we love something exotic. If you've perambulated through more than 10 years of Eurocovering you must have noticed some unusual coverversions from unexpected destinations.
Well, you can't get more exotic than this, from erm... Sweden.

Urban Turban and singer Shamim Naghedi released an album earlier this year titled Paradis. The Cd includes 12 Swedish classics* sung in Persian. It's not just Schlager with Persian lyrics, the music is filled with middle eastern mystique, hints of folk rock and all kinds of traditional instruments.

Now Urban Turban have been going for a few decades and it's mainman Peter Bryngelsson who remembers most of the tunes featured from his younger days. The Persian lyrics are by Shamim Naghedi and Safoura Safavi, both Iranian singers.

I'm not really an expert on the Swedish Classics outside Melodifestivalen, Abba and a bit of Cornelis, so I didn't recognise all the tracks on this album instantly.
But there are two Eurovision tunes that jump out. The closing track** is Det Börjar Verka Kärlek...Banne Mej, the 1968 Swedish entry by Claes Göran Hederström. (In Persian it's Engar Daräm Jedan Ashegh Mishäm)
The highlight is Ghäribe, Främling (Stranger), the 1983 Swedish entry by the High Priestess of Swedish Eurovision Carola.

The CD is out on Caprice records and of course also available through the digital platforms. Although not all may have the same tracklist (see below)
Here's the two Eurovision covers on Spotify, the full album is there too, just go check it out for yourself.

* I said Swedish classics, but there are a few that were already coverversion in their Swedish Classic disguise, more details below in the tracklist.

............
............
Tracklist Paradis
1. Sånt Ar Livet (Zendegi Iyne)
- A 1961 hit by Anita Lindblom, Originally You Can Have Her by Roy Hamilton.
2. Är Det Konstigt Att Man Längtar Bort Nån Gång (Vä äjibe deltang mishan adama)
- Lena Andersson hit from 1971, originally I'm Gonna Be A Country Girl Again by Buffy Sainte-Marie
3. Han Måste Gå (On bayäd bere)
- A 1960 hit for Gunnar Wiklund, originally He'll Have To Go by Jim Reeves
4. Gråt Inga Tårar (Gerye Näkon)
- A 1975 song by Pippis. (A Swedish original)
5. Flottarkärlek (Instrumental) (Eshghe doroghi)
- 1948 song which was a succes in 1952 for Gösta Nordgren
6. Du Ar Den Ende (Tou Tänha käsi hasti)
- The original is by Lill Lindfors, recorded in 1966
7. Jag Ger Dig Min Morgon (Subhe män male tou)
I Give You In The Morning by Tom Paxton, the Swedish version is by Fred Åkerström
8. Bygga Upp Ett Stort Berg (Besaz yek koohe buozuorg)
- 1974 song by Jan Malmsjö
9. Min Alskling Du Ar Som En Ros (Eshghe män tou mäsle goule sourkhi)
- 1943 song by Swedish legend Evert Taube
10. Främling (Ghäribe)
- Carola!!!
11. Jag Vill Ha En Egen Måne (Instrumental) (Män maahe khodamo mikhaam)
- 1972 song by Ted Gärdestad
12. Det Börjar Verka Kärlek... Banne Mig (Engar daräm jedan ashegh mishäm)
Above is the Spotify tracklist
**The original CD tracklist also includes Lyckliga Gatan (Il Ragazzo Della Via Gluck, a.k.a. Tar And Cement) but I'm not sure if it's on it, however, there is a Youtube.
I'm also not sure if Det Börjar... ended up on the CD, as there are conflicting tracklists.


Links and sources
Utter thanks go to Frederick who spotted this and alerted Eurocovers.
I haven't been able to find much in the form of websites or facebooks but there is a good article here at Musikverket.se  where I nicked some of the info.
Caprice records at Musikverket
I Wiki'd and such for the details on the songs, so you don't have to.
You'll find more Carola covers here at Eurocovers.
An article about Tar And Cement is here at Eurocovers





Wednesday, October 25, 2017

J'aime La Vie by Laurence



Here's a lovely coverversion of the 1986 Eurovision winner J'aime La Vie by Sandra Kim.

Remember the chirpy 13 year old bopping on the stage in her white and pink bellhop ensemble? Well, this version by Laurence is something completely different. Darker, moody even, but somehow still life affirming.

Laurence Plane Facebook

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Adio, Goodbye, Hyvästi

No, I’m not going anywhere, but here are two Finnish coverversions of Adio, the 2015 Montenegrin Eurovision entry originally performed by Knez (Nenad Knežević). 
Two coverversions of Adio were recorded in Finnish. Both songs are titled Hyvästi which translates as Goodbye or, indeed, Adio.


Hyvästejä
The first Finnish coverversion is recorded in 2015 and is by Aki Samuli and Susanna Heikki. This can be found on Samuli's album Tahdon (I do, Sony, also on CD) and also on Heikki's album Valoja (Lights, Sony, also on CD).

Susanna Heikki is not a stranger to the Eurocover.
Her 2009 album Vietellen (Seducing) includes En Ole Yksin (I'm not alone), a Finnish version of Hold On Be Strong, the Norwegian entry of 2008 by Maria Haukaas Storeng.
She also recorded a Finnish version of Engelbert Humperdincks ill fated Love Will Set You Free (UK entry 2012). Her version is titled Jos Rakkaus Sattuu (If love hurts). It was released as a digital single in 2014.

The second Hyvästi is from 2016. This take on Adio is by Kalle Jussila who released his version as a digital single and on his album Onnellinen Mies (A happy man). (digital release through Z-trading, don't know if there's a CD).


Željko the Great.
Adio is written by Serbian Eurovision superstar Željko Joksimović together with Dejan Ivanovič and Marina Tucaković. 


The original Knez cds
Joksimović has his name under five Eurovision entries. 
His own Lane Moje ended second in 2005 (for Serbia-Montenegro). He penned Lejla for Hari Mata Hari who ended 3rd for Bosnia-Hercegovina in 2006.
Home entry Oro by Jelena Tomašević ended 6th in the Belgrade contest of 2008.
Another 3rd place was for Nije Ljubav Stvar performed by ZJ himself (2012).
Adio may not have equalled Joksimović's earlier successes but with a 13th place in the final it is the best result so far for Montenegro (out of 9 entries).
Knez himself recorded Serbian, French and English versions of the song. (More about that here).


Links and sources:
Special thanks to Immo Aho, sorry it took so long.
All about Knez’s original Adio at the Vienna Collection.
Aki Samuli Website
Susanna Heikki Website
Kalle Jussila Website
Knez Facebook
Željko Joksimović Website
The original Adio video.
Below is a spotti link for the Finnish covers but you can also browse for the tracks at Youtube or of course buy at the Tunes and what have you.




Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Conny Vandenbos Box, Result!

Another Update on the Conny Vandenbos Complete Works.
It has arrived!, #295 out of a 1000. The finished product looks gorgeous and now I have to find some time to listen to the 15 CDs (it's Eurovision week...).
You can find the full (and very detailed) tracklists at here at Discogs.

If you want to get this wonderful box in your collection, just go the Conny Vandenbos website and drop an e-mail for details.



The 1965 Conny van den Bos Songfestival EP
Update
The crowdfunding project has finished successful. Congratulations to Marc!. Respect for your amazing job.
If you didn't pledge yet I'm sure the box will be available as soon as it's finished (1000 copies are made)
I'll keep you updated, watch this space.

Conny Vandenbos Box
Here’s one for the Dutchies and maybe for some other fans too.
Eurovision fans know Conny Vandenbos (as Conny van den Bos) from her 1965 entry ‘t Is Genoeg. The song only finished 11th, but is a much loved classic with an amazing orchestral backing track.

Now there’s a project to release a 15CD box set spanning her work from the early 60’s to 2001.
Conny Vandenbos released some classic songs in the 60’s, but I guess her most successful era was the seventies when she had several bestselling hitalbums and singles.

found this....
It's Enough
The 15CD box will include 308 songs, 94 that are released on CD for the first time and 35 that haven’t been previously released at all.
In the last category we’ll find It’s Enough, the never before heard English version of the 1965 Eurovision song.
‘t Is Genoeg also features in three versions, the original single, the 1968 album version and a 90’s live version.
Preselection songs Laat Me Alleen and Van De Week are also included. (Van De Week in two versions).
Van De Week is also featured twice in English as The Night. One version is from 1965 and one from 1969 from Conny's English language album that never saw the light of day. (both also previously unreleased).
And for completists, there's are Sanremo covers too:
Als Vreemden (Like strangers) is a Dutch cover of  Iva Zanicchi's La Notte Dell'addio from the 1966 Sanremo. (Thanks Frank!)
Loretta Goggi's Maledetta Primavera (1981) can be found as Vrij Als Een Vogel (Free as a bird). It's featured in the album version (1981) and also in the single version from 1982.

Another track worth mentioning is Als De Morgen Niet Bestaat (If tomorrow doesn't exist), a song sent in for the 1989 Nationaal Songfestival (Dutch preselection for Eurovision) that wasn't selected. It wasn't intended for Conny to enter the contest, but she recorded the demo.

The Box
Check this video for snippets of 83 (of the 308) tracks. At 25:20 you can hear a bit of It's Enough.

But of course it's not just the Eurovision connection that makes this collection a must have.
Some of the best early singles take pride of place in my record collection; Paleis Met Gouden Muren (Palace with golden walls) and Ik Ben Gelukkig Zonder Jou (I'm happy without you) are two.
And no-one was left unmoved by Sjakie Van De Hoek (Jack from the corner....) and Roosje Mijn Roosje (Rose for my Rose, a version of A Daisy A Day) in the mid 70's. The perfect blend of melancholy and love.

How to participate
The project needs some more supporters. Please go here to Voor De Kunst to find out more about how to participate in this massive  labour of love and secure your copy of this elaborate CD box.
All tracks will be remastered / digitalized to a very high standard and the sleeves will feature some rare photographs.

Conny Vandenbos passed away in 2002, this collection is a lovely way to celebrate her wonderful legacy.

Pledging
I've bought quite a few fantastic records the past few years through pledging (Cornelis Vreeswijk, Marc Almond, V V Brown). 
It means you pledge to buy the forthcoming product and if a project fails to raise enough to continue you'll get your money back.
It's a great way to get music from artists who are somehow not interesting enough for your average record company.

Special thanks to Frank and to Marc. And a shoutout to Frans.

Monday, May 08, 2017

Vega: Oh My Dio, it's Elvis!



Dio Come Ti Amo, frequent Eurocovers readers know that it's one of my favorite Eurovision songs.
Here's a new version that has a really famous person featuring.

Vega is a Spanish singer who recorded 5 albums in Spanish since 2003. Her new album, Non Ho L'eta, is in Italian and features 11 classic Italian tunes including three Eurovision entries. (see detailed tracklist)

For her Dio Come Ti Amo she get's a little help from non other than Elvis Costello.
Dio is the third (digital) single from the album.
The album was released in March on LP (!), Cassette (!!), CD and digital through La Madriguera Records / Subterfuge Records.
Before you buy you can listen to all the songs at Vega's Youtube channel. (see links and sources below)

Oh, before i forget, it's fab!
(I'm not a very good reviewer, but after Dio you should check out the video for Ma Che Freddo Fa)

Non Ho L'Eta - Vega tracklist
1.   Ma Che Freddo Fa
- Sanremo 1969 - Nada and the Rokes
2.   Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare)
- Sanremo and Eurovision 1958 - Domenico Modugno
3.   Dio Come Ti Amo - ft Elvis Costello
- Sanremo and Eurovision 1966 - Domenico Modugno, Gigliola Cinquetti
the LP!
4.   Centro Di Gravitá Permanente
- Franco Battiato (1981)
5.   Cittá Vuota
- Mina (1963)
6.   L'Appuntamento
- 1970, originally by Roberto and Erasmo Carlos, Ornella Vanoni recorded an Italian version in 1970.
the Cassette!! / MC / K7
7.   Tu Vuó Fa L'Americano
- 1956 song by Renato Corasone and re-introduced to the dancing audience by Australian DJ’s Yolanda B. Cool as We No Speak Americano (2010)
8.   Non Ho L'Eta
- 1964 Sanremo and Eurovision winner by Gigliola Cinquetti
9.   Se Bruciasse La Cittá
- 1969 single for Massimo Ranieri
10. Azzurro
- An international hit for Adriano Celentano in 1968. Written by Paolo Conto who recorded it in 1985
11. Il Mondo
- 1965 hit for Jimmy Fontana


                                                                                             
Links and sources
Vega Website, facebook, Youtube channel
Spanish people can buy it at Fnac, other will have to work harder, make Spanish friends or get it at e-bay. Digital is available worldwide.
Discover more Eurocovers posts with Volare (Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu), Dio Come Ti Amo and Non Ho L'eta 

the CD