DISCLAIMER : THE IDEA OF THE VINYL COVERS IS TO CELEBRATE THE FACT THAT THERE ARE MORE THAN JUST ACTUAL EUROVISION ENTRIES – SOME EUROVISION ARTISTS HAVE HAD OTHER RELEASES, SOME WERE JUST IN NATIONAL SELECTIONS AND IN SOME CASES COMPOSERS FROM EUROVISION WROTE OTHER SONGS AS WELL. SO THESE POSTS ARE TO CELEBRATE THAT AND OUR KNOWLEDGE ON THE ACTUAL ARTISTS ARE LIMITED AND FOR THAT REASON WE SEARCH THE INTERNET AND ESPECIALLY WIKIPEDIA FOR INFORMATION – BUT WE HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE AS TO WHAT IS CORRECT AND WHAT NOT. IT IS FOR EACH PERSON WHO READS THE POST AND SEE INCORRECT INFORMATION TO CONTACT US AND WE WILL IMMEDIATELY CORRECT IT.

It is almost impossible to find any information about Gunther Stern even although he was a fairly successful schlager singer in the 80’s. He took part in the 1985 German selection for Eurovision with the song HIER, DA UND UBERALL, which was composed by Hanne Haller who actually composed the winning song that year, “Fur alle” by Wind. I love this song by Gunther very much, it was my top song that year – I still consider 1985 as the best German selection with me liking each and every song in the selection that year.

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Umberto Antonio Tozzi was born on the 4th of March 1952 in Turin, Italy. He is a pop/rock singer and composer. His most international hits are: “Claridad”, “Gloria” and TI AMO. The last two song were made world famous in English by Laura Branigan. In 1980 he releases “Stella stai”, another of his main hits. The following year the Latin Group Menudo recorded the Spanish version of “Stella stai”, entitled “Claridad”, making it one of the biggest selling records in the whole Latin America, Central, Mexico and US Hispanic market. In 1987 he won the Sanremo Music Festival with “Si può dare di più” (“More can be given”), sung with Gianni Morandi and Enrico Ruggeri. 1987 was also the year of “Gente Di Mare'”(“People of the sea”), performed with Raf at the Eurovision song contest, which saw them take third place.
If you are interested to read more about Umberto Tozzi, you will find it here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umberto_Tozzi

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Salvatore “Toto” Cutugno was born on the 7th of July 1943 and is an Italian pop singer-songwriter and musician. Cutugno is best known for his worldwide hit song, L’ITALIANO which was on his hit CD, I Grandi Successi. He won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1990 with the song “Insieme – 1992″. As with a previous Eurovision winner Johnny Logan, he was author of both the lyrics and music. He gave Italy their second Eurovision winner and was the host together with the other winner Gigliola Cinquetti in 1991 when Eurovision was broadcast from Rome.
If you want to read more on Toto Cutugno, you will find the following article useful:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toto_Cutugno

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Andreas Martin was born in Berlin on the 23rd of December 1952. He is a German schlager singer with several big hits to his name. He came third in the OGAE Second Chance Contest 1989 with “Herz an herz” which came 4th in the German selection that year. Although Andreas as such is not known in South Africa, his music is as many of his songs have been covered in Afrikaans and mostly by one local singer BLES BRIDGES. Probably the biggest of them is “Abschied von den sternen” which became “Reik na die sterre” (Reach for the stars) in Afrikaans. I love DER HIMMEL KANN WARTEN which he also sang in English as “Deserted from heaven”. The composers of the song are Andreas himself together with Tony Hendrik (who wrote several selection songs)and Michael Kunze who among others wrote the lyrics tothe following Eurovision entries – Luxembourg 1974, Austria 1985 and Germany 1977, 1984 and 1990. Michael is especially known in South Africa for writing the original German lyrics to one of the biggest Afrikaans hits “Liefling” by Ge Korsten and the English lyrics to the number 1 hit by Peter Maffay called “You”.

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American/Austrian Wolff Gerhard recorded under the alias Wolfgang Gerhard, such songs as “Der kleine See in deine Augen.” He also recorded in English under the alias Kim Collins for the Eastern European market. He took part in the 1985 German selection for Eurovision with the song ALSO LEBE ICH composed by Gunther-Erich Thoner and Stephan Lego. The 1985 selection featured some fantastic songs and it is was a pity there could have been only one winner.

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Alan Garrity is the son of a British army officer. He moved to Rhodesia with his parents shortly before his fourteenth birthday. As a child he performed in various school musical activities but harboured no pretensions of being anything more than ordinary. He learnt to play guitar at fifteen and, after completing his schooling trained and worked as a radiographer. As a hobby he sang in local pubs and hotels. It was during this period that Alan realized that he had a three-octave range in his voice. He Joined a band in Bulawayo called TABBRON TRIO and Geoff Tabbron penned their first seven single, a song called “Coloured Rain”. It scored an immediate success, this tune as it raced up the Rhodesian record charts, peaking at Number 2. With gathering confidence in his musical prospects, Alan gave up his occupation as a radiographer and landed a job as the resident vocalist at the Swaziland Holiday Inn in 1972. The well-known Peter Lotis of Gallo records South Africa heard Alan perform at this venue and offered Alan a recording contract. At Peter’s suggestion Alan recorded “Put Your Hand In The Hand” and the song achieved instant success, quickly dominating the local charts. It also made Alan a household name. The song topped the Springbok Top 20 for four weeks and the Rhodesian charts for five. This run at No 1 started on 5 June 1971. His next chart success, “I Need Someone”, held the record for over ten years as the song with the longest chart run on Springbok Radio’s Top 20 hit parade. It spent 33 weeks on the charts between June 1972 and January 1973. This song – which peaked at No 2 on Springbok’s Top 20 – earned him two Gold Discs. “Home Isn’t Home Anymore” was Alan’s next chart entry, spending 16 weeks on Springbok’s Top 20, peaking at No 5 in 1973. In December 1973, he released “Goodbye Mama” (composed by Ralph Siegel) , which peaked at No 15 in January 1974, spending 7 weeks on the Top 20. In 1976, Alan’s acting skills came to the fore when he took the lead role of Joseph in PACT’s ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat”, performing alongside well known artists such as Richard Loring, Jody Wayne and Alvin Collison. This production toured extensively throughout South Africa and Rhodesia. Hit singles continued to accumulate with “Santa Maria” reaching No 4 on the Springbok Top 20 in 1981, spending 11 weeks on the charts. In April, 1982, he entered the charts with “You Stood By Me” which reached No 18. Another success for him in 1982 was the song OH LOUISA which was composed by Alice and Battiato of Italy – Alan wrote the English lyrics. Alice and Battiato of course represented Italy 2 years later at Eurovision with “I treni di Tozeur”.

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Bata illic was born on the 30th of September 1939 in Belgrade , in the old Yugoslavia. Illic was born as the son of a financial officer. After finishing his studies, he studied philology, English and Italian and worked for two years as a teacher. During this time he met the musician Andreas Triphan, who founded with him a band. After an appearance at the American Embassy in Belgrade, Illic was in 1963 with his band “Grandpa’s Whites” several months guest performance contract for the American Club “Twister” in Bad Kissingen . In 1967 Illic recorded his first record. In 1972 he had his greatest success with Michaela composed by Jean Frankfurter who wrote the 1978 German entry Feuer. Bata Illic apopeared on numerous music programs like the ZDF Hit Parade and presented Michaela. Michaela was also successfully covered in South Africa and became a big hit. The following years were very successful for him as a percussionist. At the beginning of the 1980s it became somewhat quieter around him. He has been married to Olga Illic since 1963. He has lived in Munich for more than 35 years. My favourite Bata Illic song is MALINCONIA which is the German version of a big Italian song composed by Maurizio Fabrizio and Riccardo Fogli. Riccardo represented Italy at Eurovision in 1983 with Per Lucia.

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GG Anderson was born on the 4th of December 1949 in Eschwege. His real name is Gerd Grabowski. He is a German composer , producer and pop singer . GG Anderson graduated after finishing high school to become a electrician . Besides, he worked from the beginning as a singer and drummer . His musical career began in 1964 as a band member of “The Rackets”, 1968, he sang at the Blue Moon , 1970 and 1972 the band “Love and Tears” (the companion of Michael Holm ). In 1973 he began as a solo artist under the name “Alexander Marco”, from 1977 to 1979 as “Tony Bell” and since 1980 under the name “GG Anderson”. As a composer, Anderson has created more than 1,000 titles, worked for artists such as Mireille Mathieu , Rex Gildo , Andrea Jürgens , Axel Becker , Andy Borg , Judith & Mel , Brunner & Brunner , The Paldauer , Tony Christie , Wildhearts , Thomas Anders , Goombay Dance band , Roland Kaiser . For Engelbert he composed the successful title The Spanish Night is Over. Roland Kaiser sang several songs composed by Anderson among them “Flieg mit mir zu den sternen” which was covered in Afrikaans by Anneli van Rooyen as “Ek kan droom van my sonskip”. Success as a singer did not occur until 1981. Some of his biggest hits are “Mama Lorraine”, “Cheerio”, “Memories of Lucia” etc. In 1988 he was fourth in the German preliminary decision to Euro Vision Song Contest with “Hattest du heut’ zeit fur mich” (if you had you time for me today). Anderson has been working with composers such as Engelbert Simons or Ekki Stein. He also wrote the world wide hit for Audrey Landers “Manuel goodbye”. Over 30 of his songs have been covered in Afrikaans, one of the biggest being Julia sung by Manie Jackson. My favourite song by G G is JIM AND ANDY, one of he songs he did in English first.

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Tommy Seebach (September 14, 1949 – March 31, 2003), born Tommy Seebach Mortensen in Copenhagen, Denmark, was a popular Danish singer, composer, organist, pianist and producer. He is best known as front man of Sir Henry and his Butlers and for numerous contributions to the Danish qualifier for the Eurovision song contest, the Dansk Melodi Grand Prix, which he won three times. He was the father of songwriter/producer Nicolai Seebach and singer/songwriter/producer Rasmus Seebach. Seebach began his musical career as an organist in his own group “The Colours” at age 14. In the following years he played in many pop and beat groups. He played the piano with various orchestras and groups, sometimes going under the name of “Boogie-Woogie-Tommy”. He gained mainstream popularity in Denmark in 1965, when he became a member of the band Sir Henry and his Butlers, writing many of their most popular hits. He also worked as a recording engineer at the Rosenberg Studio in Copenhagen and amongst other projects recorded the legendary Icecross album there in 1973. In 1976 he emerged as a successful solo artist. His hit album “Tommygum” was released in 1977. At the same time he was in high demand as a producer at his record company EMI, where he was involved in projects for artists such as Lecia & Lucienne. Seebach competed seven times in the Dansk Melodi Grand Prix. Only one other act, the Hot Eyes, has ever won the competition three times. In 1979, his song “Disco Tango”, coauthored with Keld Heick, and performed by Seebach, came in as no 1. Finishing 6th at the Eurovision Song Contest 1979, it became a major hit both in Denmark and other European countries. A friendship with fellow contenders “Black Lace” (UK entry) led to Tommy, producing the single “Hey Hey Jock McCray” for the band, released the following year in Denmark by EMI. In 1980, his song “Bye-Bye”, performed by the duo Lecia & Lucienne, came in 7th. In 1981, he won the competition once again, in a duet with Debbie Cameron. The song “Krøller eller ej”, was also coauthored with Keld Heick. Translated as “Straight or Curly Hair”, it finished 11th at Eurovision Song Contest 1981. Cameron has later alleged that Denmark and Israel had been among countries whose sound checks had been sabotaged in order to bring The UK’s Bucks Fizz to victory. In 1982, his song “Hip hurra det’ min fødselsdag” (“Hip hip hurray, this is my birthday”), performed by himself, came in second. In 1984, “Pyjamas for to” (“Pyjamas for two”) came in fourth. In 1985, “Det’ det jeg altid har sagt” (“I always said this”) came in second. In 1987, “Det’ gratis” came in fourth. In 1993, Seebach won the competition again, performing the song “Under stjernerne på himlen” (“Under the stars of the sky”), written together with Keld Heick. He had submitted the song several times before, but had been turned down. At the time, the public interest in the Song Contest, deemed cheesy by the cultural elite, was fading, and as an icon of the contest, Seebach’s popularity had been on the wane for some time. It has been alleged that Danmarks Radio had originally turned the song down out of fear that Seebach, who had developed a severe addiction to alcohol, would cause a scandal at the performance. When the song came in as a secure no. 1, his popularity soared for a while, but only to drop dramatically, when the song finished 22nd out of 25 songs at Eurovision Song Contest 1993, receiving only 9 points. The poor result meant that Denmark did not qualify for the ESC 1994, and Seebach was widely criticized, after experiencing a brief rise in popularity, and never competed again. He had a big hit in 1989 with the duet “Du skælder mig hele tiden ud” (“You’re Always Yelling at Me”), sung with Annette Heick, Keld Heick’s daughter. They followed up this success with two more singles and a Christmas album. The 1990s were lean years for him as a performer and recording artist. He had a comeback with the release of a disco-version of “Krøller eller ej” released in 1999, as well as the release of a compilation album. He toured the country’s discotheques at that time and found cult interest in his old hits among a new, younger audience. I have selected the cover of MIRROR MIRROR.

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Alain Barrière (born Alain Bellec, 18 November 1935 in La Trinité-sur-Mer, Morbihan) is a French singer, who has been active since the 1950s and is known for participating in the 1963 Eurovision Song Contest. In 1963, Barrière’s song “Elle était si jolie” (“She Was So Pretty”) was chosen as the French representative in the eighth Eurovision Song Contest which took place on 23 March in London. “Elle était si jolie” finished fifth of 16 entries. “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, in 1964 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. Barrière had gained a reputation for being uncompromising and at times difficult to work with. In the early 1970s he left his record company to set up his own label. He kept his fanbase, which ensured his records and concerts continued to provide a good living, despite his being overlooked by sections of the French broadcast media. “Tu t’en vas”, a 1975 duet with fellow Eurovision veteran Noëlle Cordier, topped the French chart, and was the third biggest-selling single of the year in Switzerland. Tu t’en vas was covered many times, the ones like most are Du gehst fort by Ireen Sheer & Bernhard Brink, If you go by Peter Lotis & Miree (a hit in South Africa in the middle 70’s) and then the Afrikaans cover Weer terug by Manuel Escorcio & Janita Claassen.

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Thomas Anders (born Bernd Weidung, 1 March 1963) is a German singer, composer, and record producer. Anders was the lead singer of Germany’s popular pop-duo Modern Talking in 1984–1987 and in 1998–2003. Anders was born in Koblenz, West Germany. He began showing interest in music as a child, he did his first stage-performance at age of 7. Anders first studied music at Koblenz Eichendorff-Gymnasium, and then he studied musicology for five semesters at Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. After having performed at several clubs and discothèques, in 1979, he participated in a music contest organized by the radio station Radio Luxembourg which he walked away from without earning enough points. Two days after the contest, Anders was offered a record contract by the same jury members of the radio contest. It was then that his career officially began when in 1980, at age of 17, he released his debut single “Judy”. Anders released several other singles produced by Daniel David including “Du weinst um ihn”, which he performed on Michael Schanze’s TV show Hätten sie heut’ zeit für uns. In 1983, he met Dieter Bohlen who produced “Was macht das schön”, the German cover version of F. R. David’s “Pick Up the Phone” and also “Heißkalter Engel”, the German cover version of Real Life’s “Send Me an Angel”. From late 1983 to the mid of 1984 Bohlen produced other tracks for Anders including “Wovon träumst du denn”, “Endstation Sehnsucht” and “Es geht mir gut heut’ Nacht”. The success, however, came when in late 1984, Anders and Bohlen formed the successful duo Modern Talking, which they started things off by a worldwide hit single “You’re My Heart, You’re My Soul”. In late 1987, Anders and Bohlen decided to terminate Modern Talking and go their separate ways due to constant quarrel between the two. Shortly after which Anders went on a long tour, covering cities like Budapest, Ljubljana, Potsdam, Wrocław, Gdańsk, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taipei, Moscow, Viña del Mar and Sun City in South Africa. Although Anders left Germany for the United States, in 1989, his first solo album, Different was released in Germany on Teldec Records. As the title of the album suggests, it was quite different from all of Modern Talking’s materials. All of the songs had more pop style rather than dance like tunes. Some of the tracks on the album were produced by Elton John’s producer Gus Dudgeon including the single “Love of My Own”. Anders also worked with a-ha’s producer Alan Tarney, who produced three tracks on the album. Anders did produce three of the tracks himself along with Marc Cassandra including “You Are My Life”, “One Thing” and “Close Your Eyes to Heaven”. The second album Whispers was released in 1991, three singles were released off Anders’ second solo album “The Sweet Hello, the Sad Goodbye” written by Roxette member Per Gessle, “I Can’t Give You Anything (But My Love)” and “True Love”. In 1992, Anders released his third album Down on Sunset, the singles “How Deep Is Your Love” and “Standing Alone” (Duet with Glenn Medeiros) found some success both in Germany and Austria. Anders released his fourth solo album When Will I See You Again in 1993. The first single “When Will I See You Again” featured the original singers of the song, The Three Degrees. Also, in 1993, Anders experienced something new as he got a part in a Swedish movie Stockholm Marathon.] He also co-wrote with Ralf Stemmann the title-song for that film “Marathon of Life”, which is one of the tracks in his 1993’s album When Will I See You Again. In 1994, he came back with an album Barcos de Cristal, which he released in Spanish only for U.S., South America and Argentina, this album contained songs from albums of 1992 and 1993, all redone in Spanish. Anders released one more album in 1995 called Souled, which he produced together with Peter Wolf, this album contained a duet featuring The Pointer Sisters “Feel for the Physical”. Things for him then were quiet until March 1998 when Thomas Anders and Dieter Bohlen announced the reunion of Modern Talking. The duo released six studio albums between 1998 and 2003 and split again in 2003. Thomas Anders received an offer from NDR to host the Eurovision Song Contest 2004, 11 million viewers who already knew Anders as a singer watched him announce the German voting points. Also, in 2004, Anders was asked to record the ballad “Just Dream” which was to be the official anthem for the ballet Holiday on Ice which reached No.64 in Germany. In the following year, Anders was involved in a legal battle which he had brought against his Modern Talking partner, Dieter Bohlen. Anders claimed that Bohlen had slandered about him in his autobiographical book. In the Spring of 2005, the court rejected to have Bohlen pay the one million Euros which Anders had sued Bohlen for. In March 2006, Anders got involved in Eurovision Song Contest again; however, he was one of the three contestants to represent Germany in the Eurovision Song Contest 2006 alongside the Greek-born Vicky Leandros (Eurovision Song Contest 1972 winner) and country band Texas Lightning featuring comedian Olli Dittrich. However, the spectators chose the latter. Anders announced the German Eurovision voting results once again in 2009. In the Spring of 2009, Anders was featured on the song called “The Night Is Still Young for which he collaborated with Sandra, the single peaked at No.46. Anders released his next solo single, “Why Do You Cry” in 2010 which peaked at No. 21 on Russian Airplay Chart. In the Spring of 2010, Anders released his next studio album, Strong for Russian and CIS market. The album reached the platinum status in Russia for sales of 650,000 units, making him the best-selling international artist in Russia that year.

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Nino de Angelo (born Domenico Gerhard Gorgoglione, 18 December 1963) is a German singer of Italian descent known for his 1983 chart-topper “Jenseits von Eden”, and who participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 1989 with the song, “Flieger”, written by Dieter Bohlen and Joachim Horn-Bernges. He had a minor hit in 1984 in the UK Singles Chart with “Guardian Angel”. Originally the song was recorded in German and written by Drafi Deutscher. Titled “Jenseits von Eden”, it remained number 1 for ten weeks on the German chart in 1983, while an Italian version called LA VELLA DEL EDEN was number one in France for five weeks. He collaborated with German band Mr. President, performing a song called “Olympic Games” from their “We See the Same Sun” album. He participated in Eurovision Song Contest in 1989 with the song “Flieger”, performed 21st in the night and finished 14th with 46 points. German punk band Die Ärzte covered the song “Jenseits Von Eden” on their self-titled album, released in 1986. The song has been frequently covered in South Africa, both in English and Afrikaans.

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Jürgen Renfordt (born the 25th of January 1955 in Wetter an der Ruhr) is a German Schlager singer, composer, music producer and WDR 4-Moderator. In 1981 Renfordt entered the German qualification for the Eurovision Song Contest. His title “Barfuss durch ein Feuer” (barefoot through a fire) came in 4th place. Since that time he was a regular guest of music programs on television. 1984 he entered again the qualification for the Eurovision Song Contest. His title “Tanz auf dem Vulkan” (dance on the volcano) came 8th place. In the same year he did a duet with Denise “Kein Wort zuviel” (no word too much), the German version of “Don’t answer me”. 1985 he finished 9th with “Am Anfang der Zeit” (at the beginning of the time) in the qualification for the Eurovision Song Contest. Then it got more quiet for Renfordt as a performer. He worked mainly as a composer and lyricist for many colleagues, wrote songs for Sandy Wagner, Michael Holm, Ibo, Roy Black, the Flippers and many others, until he had his his biggest success in 1988: “Zu verkaufen: Ein schneeweisses Brautkleid” (for sale – a snow-white wedding dress), which became an iconic schlager song. Remarkable fact: this song was submitted for the Grand Prix Germany in 1987, but did not survive the radio pre-selection. One of his songs from 1989 became a classic gospel hit in South Africa, “Du hast ihre augen” – covered in Afrikaans as “My pa is koning”.

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Michael Ashley Ball, OBE (born 27 June 1962) is an English actor, singer and broadcaster, who is known for his work in musical theater. He made his West End debut in 1985 playing Marius in the original London production of Les Misérables, and went on star in 1987 as Raoul in The Phantom of the Opera. In 1989, he reached number two in the UK singles chart with LOVE CHANGES EVERYTHING, a song taken from the musical Aspects of Love, where he played Alex. He played the role in London and on Broadway. In 1992, Ball represented the United Kingdom in the Eurovision Song Contest, finishing second with the song “One Step Out of Time”. In 1995, he reprised the role of Marius in Les Misérables: The Dream Cast in Concert. His other West End roles include Georgio in Passion (1997) and Caractacus Potts in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (2002). He has twice won the Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Musical. He won in 2008 for his role as Edna Turnblad in Hairspray, and then in 2013 for the title role in the revival of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. Ball was awarded the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in the 2015 Birthday Honours for his services to musical theater.

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Austria has been the country of one of the contests most regular faces. A certain individual appeared on stage no less than six times. He is, of course, Gerhard ‘Gary’ Lux. Born in Canada, his finest hour came in 1985 when he finished eighth with ‘Kinder dieser Welt’ which was my top song that year. The English Childen of the world ie even better. He was a soloist, a member of the credited group, and a backing vocalist. Lux performed for Austria on the following occasions:
1983 as a member of Westend performing “Hurricane”
1984 providing backing for Anita performing “Einfach weg”
1985 as a solo artist performing “Kinder dieser Welt”
1987 as a solo artist performing “Nur noch Gefühl”
1993 providing backing for Tony Wegas performing “Maria Magdalena”
1995 providing backing for Stella Jones performing “Die Welt dreht sich verkehrt”
As a composer, Lux was placed second in the Austrian national heat for Eurovision in 1994 with the song “Solitaire” performed by Three Girl Madhouse. Gary also sang a duet with Gitti Seuberth at the 1984 Austrian final “Komm hoit mi” which placed 2nd. He also composed a song for Patrizio Buanne who in 2004, approached a producer with the idea of recording a collection of romantic Italian songs with an orchestra. This led to his international debut album, The Italian, which was finished in London at the Abbey Road Studios with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Released in February 2005, it reached the top ten on the pop charts in the United Kingdom. The album was certified gold in the UK, Austria and Finland, platinum in New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Taiwan, double platinum in South Africa and even triple platinum in Australia. His song WEEKEND is also catchy but nowhere near as good as his euro entry.

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Richard Esko “Riki” Sorsa (26 December 1952 – 10 May 2016) was a Finnish pop singer. He started his career in 1974 as the lead singer in the band The Zoo. He represented Finland in the Eurovision Song Contest 1981 with the entry “Reggae OK”, a reggae influenced song in Finnish which came 16th (out of 20 countries). The song was composed by Jim Pembroke, the lyrics were written by Olli Ojala, and it was conducted by Otto Donner. Sorsa released several albums, singing in Finnish, Swedish, and English. Sorsa died of cancer on 10 May 2016. He reminded me of Rod Stewart. I found this English single of him DESERT OF LOVE, released 1982 in the Netherlands.

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Karel Gott (born July 14, 1939, in Plzeň) is a Czech Schlager singer, and an amateur painter. He is considered the most successful male singer in former Czechoslovakia and currently in the Czech Republic; he was elected the Most Favorite Male Singer in the annual national poll Český slavík (English: Czech Nightingale) in total forty times, most recently in 2015. He also gained widespread fame in the German-speaking countries and is a fluent speaker of the language. Worldwide he has sold an estimated 50–100 million records with his songs, 23 million of them in the German-speaking market, and about 15 million in former Czechoslovakia and its successor states, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Of his debut LP in Russia (Melodiya, 1977) there were over 5.5 million copies sold. In 1967, Gott performed at MIDEM, the International Fair of Record Companies and Music Producers in Cannes, France, where the applause was measured during every concert. He surprised everyone by achieving a level of 54 to Tom Jones’ 58. Following this event, Gott signed a contract with the Polydor / Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft record company, renewing it several times until it became a life contract in 1997. Between 1967 and 2000, Polydor released over 125 albums and 72 singles for Karel Gott in German speaking countries in Europe. Gott represented Austria in the Eurovision Song Contest 1968 with the song Tausend Fenster, composed by Udo Jurgens, finishing in 13th place. Although virtually unknown in South Africa as a singer, one of his German songs ICH BIN DER ADLER, DU DER WIND was covered in English as I’M THE EAGLE, YOU’RE THE WIND by Bles Bridges which is one of the biggest selling songs ever in South Africa. Over the years many of his songs were covered and became big hits. One of them is his duet with DARINKA called FANG DAS LICHT (in Afrikaans the cover is called VANG DIE LIG).

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Scott Fitzgerald, (born William McPhail, 28 April 1948) is a British singer and musical actor, who experienced international music chart success in the 1970s and later represented the UK at the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest. In 1988, he was the first ever artist chosen by telephone vote to sing the UK’s entry in the Eurovision Song Contest with the song “Go”. The song was written and composed by Julie Forsyth, daughter of the entertainer Sir Bruce Forsyth. Forsyth joined Fitzgerald on stage at the contest in Dublin, alongside her husband Dominic Grant (also of Guys ‘n’ Dolls) and Des Dyer (formerly of Jigsaw), to perform backing vocals. Ronnie Hazlehurst conducted the live orchestration. Fitzgerald came second in the contest, by one point, to Switzerland’s entry performed by Celine Dion. “Go” reached number 52 in the UK Singles Chart in April 1988. Fitzgerald’s greatest success was with “If I Had Words”, a duet with Yvonne Keeley and also featuring the St. Thomas More School Choir. The lyrics and arrangement were by Jonathan Hodge, a prolific writer of television jingles and movie themes, who also produced the single. The tune was taken from the main theme of the Maestoso from Saint-Saëns Symphony No.3 in C minor (Symphony with organ) with an added reggae beat. It reached number 3 in the UK Singles Chart in 1978, and later went on to be a hit in Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, Belgium, the Netherlands and Scandinavia, selling more than one million copies. My favourite song by him is THERE’S JOY, THERE’S LOVE, which he recorded with DE STANDFASTE SINGERS. This song was composed by P van Asten and R de Bois who wrote the 1984 Dutch entry Ik hou van jou of Maribelle.

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The German selection in especially the 80’s brought some of my most love songs. In 1987 there was one which rate among the top 10 songs by a male singer. The singer is JURGEN RENFORDT, and the song is ZU VERKAUFEN : EIN SCHNEEWEISSES BRAUTKLEID. This song is so catchy and the title rates among the most interesting of any song I have ever heard. With the title also starting with a Z, it is the top song under that alphabet letter. I will always wonder how this song would have done at Eurovision

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Next up is a song called DO YOU SPEAK ENGLISH by Chris Roberts. Yes many of us do speak English, but the interesting fact of this song is that it is not sung in English but in German. On top of that, I have two covers of the song and the title is actually the same, Do you speak English, but again they are not in English. One is from South Africa and in Afrikaans – it is sung by Carike Keuzenkamp and Johan Stemmit and it has such catchy lyrics – absolutely brilliant. The other is by Keld and the donkeys and is in Danish. Keld has composed almost all the Danish euro entries of the 80’s. Chris Roberts was part of the 6 singers who sang for Luxembourg in 1985 with a song called CHILDREN, KINDER, ENFANTS. Do you speak Emglish was composed by no other than Ralph Siegel. It is from 1976 so before his song for Dschinghis khan.

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GERARD JOLING is a big star in the Netherlands, especially in the 80’s. His biggest hit was NO MORE BOLEROS in 1989. In 1988 he took part in the Eurovision song contest with SHANGRI-LA which ended 9th on the night. In 1986 he had a top 10 hit in his home country with REACH.

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In 1983 a young singer by the name of DANIJEL sang for the old Yugoslavia at Eurovision with the catchy song DZULI and ended in position 4. In the following year or two several singles were released, and strangely most of them had female titles. This one has LOLA on the A-side and JOSEPHINE on the B-side. Being quite attractive, I guess the girls of Yugoslavia could not get enough of him. I wonder what happened to him.

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UDO JURGENS is probably the best known artist from Austria and probably inside the top 10 of most known artists from Eurovision. He represented Austria no less than 3 times at Eurovision, 1964, 1965 and 1966 when the finally won with MERCI CHERIE. He went on to record tons of songs. We are featuring a song of him which is maybe not as well known. He sings it together with Sonja Kimmons and Yvonne Moore and is called WINGS OF LOVE. It is from 1991.

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