The Hornettes were established in 1980, originally with Gitta Walther , Dagmar Hellberg , Lucy Neale (aka Lucy O’Day) and Christina Harrison . Except Hellberg, all the others were previously members of the 1978 band Love Generation . They got Reiner Pietsch to produce their first record.Late during 1980, Dagmar Hellberg left and was replaced by Linda G. Thompson . In 1981, the quartet was in the German preliminary decision to Euro Vision Song Contest with the Ralph Siegel composed song MANNEQUIN and reached the second place. The lyrics was written by Bernd Meinunger and this remains the most successful of all Hornettes releases and was twelve weeks in the German music charts with a top ranking at No. 27. In the same year they released Waikiki Tamoure, also produced by Ralph Siegel. This song spent six weeks more in the German charts, but only reached place 52. In 1982, their debut album We Are on the Way appeared on Jupiter Records. In 1983, the quartet with the song Hello, Mr. Radio appeared in the Austrian preliminary decision to Euro Vision Song Contest in and took third place.
A La Carte was a German disco girl group formed in 1978. The trio originally included Patsy Fuller, Julia and Elaine. Their first song was When the Boys Come Home, released in March 1979. By 1981, the group was made up of Jeanny Renshaw, Linda Daniels and Joy Martin. Together, they released the album Viva. The group underwent several line-up changes afterwards also. The group disbanded in 1985. The final line-up featured Jeanny Renshaw, Patsy Fuller and Katie Humble. Although I love most of their songs, IN THE SUMMER SUN OF GREECE is my favourite. It was composed by Michael Cretu and K van Haaren (who together with Tony Hendrik composed Set me free, sung by Soultans in the 2001 German selection).
Arabesque was an all-girl trio at the height of the European disco era in 1977 in Frankfurt, Germany. After the first album, the band lineup was changed by keeping only the original member Michaela Rose and replacing the two other girls, Karen Ann Tepperis and Mary Ann Nagel with new members Jasmin Vetter and Heike Rimbeau, respectively. Due to Rimbeau’s pregnancy in 1978, she was briefly substituted by Elke Brück Heimer. However, shortly afterwards she too was replaced by Sandra Lauer. The trio remained in this lineup from 1979 until their split in 1984. After they split up in 1984, Jasmin and Michaela continued on as the duo “Rouge”, while Sandra Lauer started her own career as a solo artist, collaborating with Michael Cretu as Sandra and later as part of Enigma. Arabesque became extremely popular in Japan, and also had a great deal of success in the USSR. In 1980, the single “Take Me Don’t Break Me” became a hit, which only scraped the German Top 40. Their next single, “Marigot Bay”, would become their only Top Ten hit a few weeks later. Their last singles, “Ecstasy” and “Time to Say Goodbye”, became hits only after their split, in various European countries, as they sounded very close to the Italo disco sound, a very popular music genre on the European dance scene at that time. Those songs spread and gained success through LP compilations of dance/pop music, and bootleg tapes, so, the band could never take advantage of this success, as neither of those songs could properly appear on any music charts as “singles” anyway. (That was a common problem for many ’80s European dance artists.) The composers of MARIGOT BAY are John Moering and Jean Frankfurter (who composed for example 1978 German entry Feuer). Jean later became the composer who started the career of Helene Fischer – he composed almost all the songs of her first 3 CD’s.
Mrs Einstein is a Dutch vocal group. Since 1989 they perform in Dutch theaters. The group was founded by Saskia van Zutphen and Paulette Willems. Other members: Joke van der Hoek (1998-1999, 2006-2010), Suzanne Venneker (1988-1991, 1995-2006), Carolina Mout (1988-1990), Ellen van Harmelen (1991-1995), Ellen Pieters (1992-1993), Melline Mollerus (1993-1994), Marjolein Spijkers (1995-1999) and Linda Snoeij (1995-1999). In 1997 they were asked to represent the Netherlands at the ESC, During the Dutch national final they sang six songs of which Niemand Heeft Nog Tijd won, At the ESC Mrs. Einstein came 22nd. Ed Hooijmans composed the song. he did not attend Eurovision personally as he does not like flying. Mrs Einstein recorded the song in English and German as well and covered several other Euro songs, like Love games (United Kingdom), Hallelujah (Israel), Puppet on a string (United Kingdom), Power to all our friends (United Kingdom), Non ho l’eta (Italy), Waterloo (Sweden) and an interesting Dutch cover of Russia 1994 – Vetsjnyk strannik).
The group started in 1995 when Caroline Hoffman (born 7 March 1975) and sisters Niña (born 24 April 1985) and Djem van Dijk (born 23 January 1987) met during a party, where Caroline was performing with a friend. The parents of the van Dijk sisters asked Caroline to become the music teacher of the two girls. A close-knit group was born, starting with street concerts where they accompanied themselves with acoustic guitar and djembe. Their harmonised and contagious African rhythm soon attracted a lot of attention. Treble is unique for its use of a fictitious language, called “Treble”. As they put it, “In order to be able to get emotions across, music does not always require understandable language.” The van Dijk sisters were in their early teens when the collaboration with Caroline started, and were therefore better able to pick up foreign languages. Although the girls have been singing in English and occasionally in French, the Treble language still is an integral and important part of their songwriting and performances. After performing in the Netherlands and traveling abroad, the girls recorded their debut single “Ramaganana” at the end of 2003, which turned out to be the major breakthrough for the trio, reaching the number one slot on the Dutch singles Hit List. To promote the single, Treble hit the streets again. Performing with a placard requesting the listeners purchase their single and bring it to first place, they succeeded. In June 2004, their first album, No Trouble, made its debut. The girls, by then, had a record deal with CNR Music. Backed up by a group of session musicians they show the many different styles Treble has mastered, ranging from ballads to uptempo rock songs. The album is supported by a full theater tour and several festival appearances. Their second album Free came out in April 2006. By then, the group has teamed up with World Sound Management from the USA. The American management firm became interested in Treble when the group performed in France during Midem. In true Treble style, the girls weren’t invited. They went to France and just hit the streets of Cannes without any planned gigs. The album was recorded in Hawaii and Los Angeles, under the guidance of Keith Olsen. His involvement lead to a much more coherent sound and the inclusion of the Fleetwood Mac song Crystal, which also was produced by Keith Olson in its original form. Treble competed in the National Song Festival, which is the national final for the Eurovision Song Contest. On 12 March 2006, an overwhelming victory at the National Song Festival in Amsterdam made Treble the Dutch representatives in the Eurovision Song Contest 2006 in Athens. During a live television show on the Dutch channel NOS, their song “Amambanda” was chosen as the best by 72% of the viewers. After this, Treble went on tour, planning to visit every country that was to send a contestant to Athens. They succeeded in doing so, but did not qualify for the Semi-Final. Lordi, the Finnish heavy metal band, won the semis and the final. During their European tour, Treble met Lordi and they became good friends. The schedule for Treble after the Eurovision Song Contest was relatively unfruitful. A single “Fly” off the Free album was scheduled as a CD-single, but was later rescheduled to appear only as a download. Yet another single “Leave Me Alone” was scheduled for 2006 but later postponed to early 2007. Djem and Niña van Dijk have both enrolled in the Amsterdam Conservatorium to sharpen their musical skills reducing their participation in Treble. The band eventually split up in March 2010. Each of the girls have decided to make their own solo career in music. Niña van Dijk took part in season 3 of the Voice of Holland in 2012 and was part of Team Marco Borsato but was eliminated after the first live show round. Taste is very individual and it differs from person to person but for me, this is one of the worst entries ever from the Netherlands at Eurovision and I just could not get myself paying for any other song by them, so for that reason AMAMBANDA is featured.
Frizzle Sizzle were a Dutch teenage girl group of the 1980s. The four members of the group were Karin Vlasblom (born August 10, 1967), Laura Vlasblom (born October 8, 1968), Mandy Huydts (born April 9, 1969) and Marjon Keller (born June 1, 1970). The girls debuted in 1981 on the second album of Kinderen voor Kinderen, a children’s choir whose ongoing television-shows are broadcast by VARA each November. All four of them were given a lead vocal. In 1984 the girls appeared on the fifth show to tell that they formed a girl group and sang about their days with the choir as a bridge between the interviews with the departures and the new batch of songs. Naming themselves as Frizzle Sizzle, they were selected to represent the Netherlands in the Eurovision Song Contest 1986 with Alles heeft een ritme (English: Everything has rhythm), a tropical-tinged song in the classic Kinderen voor Kinderen-mould. At the end of the night, they ranked 13th out of 20, receiving 40 points. In the Dutch charts, the song went to #21. Soon afterwards Frizzle Sizzle released songs in English (Never Give Up being the first). In early 1987 they had a #14 hit with Talk it Over, which drew comparisons with established girl group Dolly Dots. Second Chance reached #38 the same year. Frizzle Sizzle were joint winners of the 1987 Silver Harp Awards for new bands with their first and only album First Date. In 1988 the girls once again paid tribute to their past by singing a song about their first bicycle-ride (backed by an on-location video) for the Peter Faber-host educational series Mijn Eerste Keer (My First Time). I have selected TREAT ME GOOD as my favourite English song by them.
Dolly Dots were a popular Dutch girl band in the 1980s. With their style of upbeat dance/pop, they scored many hits throughout Europe. The sextet consisted of Angela Groothuizen, Angéla Kramers, Anita Heilker, Esther Oosterbeek, Patty Zomer and Ria Brieffies. The Dolly Dots had many hits between 1979 and 1988. They were most successful in the Netherlands, but they also scored hits in the rest of Europe. Their single “Radio” was a big hit in Japan. “P.S.” was a Top 50 Billboard Hot Dance Club Play hit in 1981. They also enjoyed hits in Turkey, Lebanon, Iceland, and toured through Egypt. At the peak of their success in 1984 the Dolly Dots had their own TV series, Barbie dolls, wallpaper, and a #1 hit, “Love Me Just a Little Bit More (Totally Hooked On You)”. At the end of the next year, Anita Heilker left the group to have a daughter. She later became the Dutch voice of Donald Duck. The rest of the band continued as a five-piece. Heilker had already launched her own career. In 1986 she released four solo singles (“You’ve Got Me Keyed Up”, “Into The Night”, “Dancing On The Moon” and “Don’t Treat Me Like This”), as well as a solo album (The Girl In Black). Since the TV series’ success in 1984, there had been plans to record a Hollywood movie. In the summer of 1986 the 5 remaining Dolly Dots finally went to the US to work with an unfinished script and made a movie called Dutch Treat, which was released later that year. The movie and its soundtrack were modest successes in The Netherlands but were not released in the US due to poor reviews. The group broke up in 1988. Their last single was an attempt to break into the UK market. The Dolly Dots teamed up with hit producers Stock Aitken Waterman and released the song “What a Night”. It reached number 18 in the Dutch charts, but was not successful in the UK. THE QUEEN OF SHEBA, composed by Richard Debois and Peter van Asten (who wrote the 1984 Dutch entry Ik hou van jou), would have been a great Euro entry.
Luv’ is a Dutch girl group that scored a string of hit records in Continental Europe (Benelux, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, France, Denmark) as well as South Africa, Zimbabwe, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Mexico in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The original members were Patty Brard, José Hoebee and Marga Scheide. In 1979, Luv’ was “Holland’s best export act” and thus received the “Conamus Export Prize”. The band sold more than seven million records worldwide (singles and albums). Among their greatest hits were: U.O.Me (Welcome To Waldolala), You’re the Greatest Lover, Trojan Horse, Casanova and Ooh, Yes I Do. The formation went through line-up changes and the original singers reunited several times. They had a hectic schedule between 2006 and 2008. They gave a farewell performance on August 11, 2012 in Spaarnwoude at the Dutch Valley Festival. Two members of the pop act have had a successful solo career in their homeland: Patty as a TV personality and José as a vocalist. In 2016, Marga, José and Ria Thielsch (who already replaced Patty in 1980) decided to relaunch Luv’. The You’re the Greatest Lover single was their international breakthrough in 1978 and sold one million copies. Apart from their homeland, Luv’ entered the music charts in Belgium, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Mexico. The follow-up singles (Trojan Horse (another million seller), Casanova, Ooh, Yes I Do…) were also successful. In 1978-1979, Luv’ was Holland’s best export act and received for their entire oeuvre the Export award from Conamus, a foundation dedicated to the promotion and support of Dutch music abroad. In Germany, the trio was often invited on two popular TV programs: Disco and Musikladen. You’re the Greatest Lover (which sold 500.000 copies in Goethe’s country and earned a gold certification) was also used for the soundtrack of an episode of Derrick TV series. Two decades later, a dance music oriented cover version of this track by Loona renamed Latino Lover was a hit single in German speaking countries (#6 and gold single (250 000 units sold) in Germany, #9 in Austria and #6 in Switzerland in 2000). Some tracks were recorded in Spanish. Eres Mi Mejor Amante (a.k.a. You’re the Greatest Lover) was a minor hit in Spain and Si, Que Si (a.k.a. Ooh, Yes I Do) reached the gold status in Mexico. Their songs were also popular behind the Iron Curtain, especially in East Germany, Poland and Hungary. However, records distribution was limited in the Eastern Bloc. Sales were indeed difficult to evaluate in this part of the world. Their song CASANOVA would have been a perfect Eurovision entry.