Monday, 28 May 2012

Mono Monday: Engelbert Humperdinck

Admittedly even I got excited when I heard 1960s crooner Engelbert Humperdinck  was to represent the UK in the Eurovision Song Contest, but not really surprised when he didn't even come close of getting votes from most countries.

Not because of Eng's marvellous performance or song choice. No, Eurovision unfortunately still has very political inclinations and furthermore I can't remember a time when anyone who went out first in the evening got a good selection of votes.

Engelbert needn't worry though, he represented us as a true professional and it cant have done his career or album sales any harm, (a best of already cruising up the charts).

Back in the 1960s his contemporary was Tom Jones (he was also signed to Decca like Tom and managed by Gordon Mills) and had a high turn-over of hits between 1967 and 1969.

Although his recording career began in 1956 as Gerry Dorsey, it would take a name change and reinvention to shoot him to the top of the charts. His record Release Me did this in 1967, allegedly selling 85,000 copies a day at one point. The record kept The Beatles Strawberry Fields Forever / Penny Lane off the top of the charts.

I frequently remember ploughing through my mums 45 single collection from the 60s and finding a string of Eng's releases including The Last Waltz, Winter Wonderland and The Bicyclettes De Belsize.

Great stuff!

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