Yes, the Spanish queen of yé-yé really is having a bash at Britgirl Twinkle’s classic ‘death disc’ here. (And she wasn’t the only one – Germany’s Marion Litterscheid also recorded a credible version of the tune.) Typically of the genre, much of Karina’s material involved her adding an Iberian flavour to international hits, such as the Toys’ A lover’s concerto and Georgie Fame’s Yeh! Yeh! But it’s this song that’s captured our hearts this month.
Vis ta vie
Many’s the time we’ve dusted the floor with talcum powder and danced the night away to Shirley Ellis’ Soul time. So imagine our joy when we laid our hands on this, a French version by Nicoletta. And we weren’t disappointed: it’s a cracker. The song was issued in 1967 on an EP that also included La musique and Pense à l’été. The latter two, both big, emotional ballads, were far more typical of her output than our choice.
Will I never learn
Kathy is best remembered for belting out uptempo versions of 1950s hits. Well, for that and her lipgloss. Here she gives her all on this classy, heart-wrenching ballad, a tune that’s firmly in the Cilla Black mould. It was the B-side of her single of the theme to the Adam Adamant television series, from 1966. Her chart career was over by this time, and a switch of labels a few months later did nothing to help her fortunes. Shame, really.
Ich sag’: Jeder Boy ist anders
If you thought concept albums were solely the domain of 1970s prog rock bands, think again. This fab track was the opener for Danish singer Gitte’s 1967 German concept album, dubbed “a boy party with Gitte”, on which she sang about a different boy in each song. It was all part of a move to distance the singer from her Schlager past and saccharine duets with Rex Gildo. Although the pair were linked romantically in the media, in reality Rex preferred his paramours to have quite a different arrangement, erm, downstairs…
Va tu sei libero
OK, so Lesley Gore isn’t European, but hey. We’ve had so many requests for some of the US girls’ Europe-only recordings, that we thought we’d make her an honorary Euro girl for a month. Just sit back and enjoy this Italian offering. Here the American teenage star gives her feminist anthem You don’t own me a whole new perspective thanks to a different language – and we love it.
Now and then
German singer Renate Kern’s first hit came with the lively Kiss and shake, which made the German top 40 in the summer of 1965, and prompted a release of the song in English, as Now and then. In October that year, she headed to London’s Pye studios to re-record the song, with added backing vocals – and this is that recording. By the end of the 1970s she had moved to the US, dyed her hair blond and restyled herself as a Country and Western singer. Sadly, it all ended in tragedy.