Sunday, September 23, 2007

1964 - Walk Away - Warum Nur Warum

I was just checking the Matt Monro Jnr website to see how his second album If He Could See Me Now is shaping up only to discover that Walk Away has been scrapped from the initial tracklist. Shame really, as it would have been perfect Eurocovers promotion for the album.

Who and WhatMatt Monro is a British singer who enjoyed huge success in the 60's and Matt Jnr. is his son singing dads songs and currently working on his second album. -
Matt Monro Snr. (1930-1985) entered the Eurovision song contest for the U.K. in 1964 with I Love The Little Things, ending 2nd, but it was another song from the 1964 contest that became a famous standard still being recorded today.
It was Udo Jürgens' first of three consecutive Eurovision entries Warum Nur Warum (Why oh why) that Matt Monro took to the international charts. In English it became Walk Away and it was his 2nd biggest hit. And in Spanish it became Vete Por Favor.
Matt Monro also recorded Merci Cherie (LP This is the life)

I have only been able to find one coverversion in German, but almost 20 in English, including versions by well known stars like Vicky Carr, Timi Yuro and Brenda Lee. The most recent coverversion of Walk Away is by Peter Grant, a modern new swing pop crooner who recorded it for his acclaimed 2006 CD New Vintage.

(Other) Eurovision artists that have recorded the song are musical star Michael Ball, 1961 winner Jean-Claude Pascal and Germany's legendary dancing twins The Kessler sisters.

The coolest version here today is by Brenda Lee. American Rock'n'roll star a.k.a. Little Miss Dynamite. She recorded two English version including one in 1969 with Richard Williams (LP Johnny one more time (Decca DL-75111, 1969), but the most interesting is of course her featured Japanese version.
International hits like I'm Sorry, Sweet Nothin's, Fool #1 and All Alone Am I made Brenda Lee the most popular female singer (with the most hits too) of the 60's.

You can find a YouTube clip of Brenda Lee Singing the song with the Casuals, with Brenda singing in Japanese. The Casuals also recorded the song themselves.

So, sadly Matt Monro Junior hasn't recorded his dads → Eurovision song and neither the big Eurocover hit, but still it's worth while to take a look at his website.
Peter Grant has a great new CD Traditional out this week available from all sources (but no Eurocovers there)
And Udo Jürgens of course went on to win the Eurovision song contest in 1966 with Merci Cherie and still is one of the biggest stars in the German speaking countries today.
He recorded many versions of Warum Nur Warum (see doc) including a live version with the Supremes (post-Ross though) and several versions in Italian, Spanish and English.
Udo Jürgens' work will be celebrated in Mamma Mia style when in december the musical Ich War Noch Niemals In New York (I've never been to New York) premieres in the Operettenhaus in Hamburg. The musical features 23 of Jürgens hits including Merci Cherie (but not Warum Nur Warum) used in a story about an ambitious TV show host and her neglected mother.

RELATED POST: You can find a version by Byron Lee in the Eurocovers post Jamaica Can I Have Your Votes Please (part 1)
More Udo Jürgens at Eurocovers to follow soon….

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