Thursday, July 27, 2017

MOTOWN: DIANA ROSS - TAKE ME HIGHER

Take me higher is Diana's so far last chart hit (#1 in Billboard Dance charts, #32 UK) in 1995, 35 years after the very first The Supremes release. She was also back to Motown after 8 years with RCA in 1981-87. It was also her 5th US Dance chart topper, off from her album of the same name. Since then she has released only two studio albums...

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

MOTOWN: SHANICE - I LOVE YOUR SMILE

By 1990's Motown was coming to an end as we know it and Shanice and her I love your smile is one of the last big hits it provided, US #2 as well UK #2. The curiosity is the mix included laughter by Janet Jackson - keep it in the Motown family! Shanice has been also acting and doing musicals, and keeps recording even if her latest chart appearance is in 2009.
 
The song has been covered by R'n'G, Tiffany Evans, Kaori Kobayashi and Ukrainian Julia Voice. It has been sampled or mentioned in Talib Kwell's Eardrum album and Zimbabwean Roki's Zuva neZuva

FINLAND: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ANN-CHRISTINE

Ann-Christine Nyström turns 73 today. She had a short lived singing career in the 1960's that included her Eurovision adventure. Between 1962-69 she released about 20 singles (and a total of 42 songs) in Finnish, German and English, but no album. She also toured in Sweden, where she moved back in early 1970's and went into finance business. She made a surprise duet with Katja Lukin in 2003. 
Congratulations!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

EUROVISION 2018 IN LISBON ON MAY 8,10 AND 12

Lisbon it is. MEO Arena it is. And the dates are a week later than speculated yesterday and just like this blogger doubted in my previous post. Lisbon, one of the oldest cities in Europe in the West-south corner of Europe completes the Eurovision map after the contest has been held in Helsinki and Athens and Jerusalem, as well as Oslo. Now we need Reykjavik to complete the puzzle.
May 12 has already three previous Eurovision finals: 2001, 2007 and 2009.

MOTOWN: JOHNNY GILL - RUB YOUR BODY RIGHT

Johnny Gill signed to Motown for his solo career and scored an US#3 (#1 in r'n'b) hit  with Rub you the right way in 1990. Johnny started in New Edition and has then moved from singer to acting and today he's again in a group Heads of State aka BGT with fellow New Edition members Bobby Brown and Ralph Tresvant besides his solo projects. 
 


Monday, July 24, 2017

EUROVISION 2018 IN MEO ARENA IN LISBON - FINAL ON MAY 5?

The official announcement is due tomorrow evening but it seems the Portuguese press has leaked the news already. As expected the venue will be MEO Arena in Lisbon and the dates for the semifinals May 1 and 3 while the grand final on May 5. That will mean a full day of work on May 1 on the International worker's day then, but it's not the first time in Eurovision history. However this blogger thinks a week later would make more sense....
In 1988 and 1994 the final took place on April 30, so the workers got to rest the day after. Kind of. If the final is indeed on May 5 it will be the earliers final since 1984 and 1990, when it also took place on that day.
The final date has been slowly moving to May, as the second final in 1957 took place March 3 and all finals until 1966 took place in March as well, including several in the 1970's, too. In the 1970's and 1980's it was usually April and only in the 1990's until our days in  May.
The budget for the contest is expected to be around 28 million euros. Cities of Espinho, Matosinhos, Santa Maria da Feira, Guimarães, Lisbon and Portimão applied for the contest but the capital is the only one that really meets all the EBU demands. Also, In recent days, the organization of the festival made a technical visit to Meo Arena and considered that the space meets the necessary technical conditions. It is planned to use equipment with a total weight of 800 tons, which gave the arena in Parque das Nações an advantage, presumably being the only one in Portugal that supports such a heavy assembly. Meo Arena, former Pavilhão Atlântico, holds up to 20,000 people standing and in the case of Eurovision the number depends on the location and the format of the stage, which is still open.

MOTOWN: STEVIE WONDER - PART-TIME LOVER

Part-time lover is Stevie Wonder's 9th (out of 10 so far) US #1 in 1985 following the success of I just called to say I love you earlier. The song hit the #1 spot in four different Billboard charts simultaneusly - a first ever!  In UK it reached #3 and charted all over the globe.
Luther Vandross, Stevie's ex-wife Syreeta Wright and Earth, Wind & Fire's Philip Bailay are providing the backup vocals. 
 
Puerto Rican Bobby Valentin brought the song to Latin charts the year after. 

Sunday, July 23, 2017

SUMMER SOUNDS FROM TARKAN, POLINA GAGARINA, ANNI& AND JONAS BLUE

Tarkan is back with Yolla and makes this blogger want to have Turkey back in Eurovision. 
Maybe it's Tarkan's job to make the come back a bang?
Polina Gagarina has had enough of drama in her latest Драмы больше нет
It's a very typical Russian pop song
Anni& is a Finnish talent yet to be discovered. Listen to Falling from grace and this Cracks
Great stuff and worth so much more exposure. Spread the love!
Jonas Blue ft. William Singe deliver summer sounds at its purest form in Mama

MOTOWN: LIONEL RITCHIE - SAY YOU, SAY ME

Say you, say me is Lionel Ritchie's 5th (and last so far) solo US #1 single in 1986. It also won both Oscar and Golden Globe as the best original song from a movie (White nights), but it wasn't included on the movie's soundtrack album because Motown didn't want the lead single off his album to be on another label. Fair enough.
In 2012 Lionel re-recorded the song with Danish Rasmus Seebach (Tommy's son) for his duets album, and it went to #3 in Denmark.



FINLAND: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO FREDI!

Fredi aka Matti Siitonen  turns 75 today!
He has represented Finland twice in the Eurovision and has even written an additional entry (1979). His daughter Hanna-Riikka has kept the family name alive in the Eurovision in the 1990's and 2000's as a backing singer and national final competitor.
Congratulations!

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