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Our pick of the pops, March 2011

Vote for your favourite or comment using the forms at the foot of the page.

 

Rocío Dúrcal

Creo en ti

Spain’s Rocío Dúrcal was an actress and singer who enjoyed phenomenal success from the early 1960s onwards. She is estimated to have sold a whopping 65 million records to date. In 1965, on the set of Más bonita que ninguna she was introduced to beat combo Los Brincos. The group agreed to pen a set of songs for the fresh-faced star for her next film, Buenos días, condesita. Our pick is one of the four songs written by the group. Issued in 1966, it’s distinctly more hip than many of her previous releases. Rocío’s links to the group didn’t end there – she went on to marry member Antonio Morales Junior.

 

Dana Valery

You don’t know where your interest lies

People often assume Dana Valery was American, but she was in fact Italian by birth. She hailed from Milan and moved to South Africa with her family at the age of four. She moved back to Italy in her teens, only to head to Johannesburg again a couple of years later. While there, she enjoyed considerable success, in particular with This is my prayer, a version of her countrywoman Gigliola Cinquetti’s 1964 Eurovision winner, Non ho l’eta. Ultimately, she left South Africa for the US, where she cut this fantastic track in 1967. Penned by Paul Simon, You don’t know where your interest lies has since filled many a dance floor. (If you like this, check back next month when we’ll be publishing a Brit girl northern soul special, with lots more great dance tracks.)

 

Vivi Bach

Dreamy Boy

Hold the front page: Vivi Bach in decent record shocker! We knew she looked great – after all, she was known as the Danish Brigitte Bardot – but the fact that she’d cut a song worth listening to came as news to us. She issued a string of singles in Germany in the early 1960s, enjoying success only with a duet with Gerhard Wendland on a version of Paul and Paula’s Hey Paula, retitled, erm, Hey Vivi, hey Gerhard! On our pick, Vivi takes on a little-known US release by Jackie Burns and the The Bo Bells called He’s my guy. It appeared on the flip of her 1964 single Let’s shake. Actually, the A-side isn’t bad either, so that’s two decent Vivi Bach songs. Who knew?

 

Zouzou

Tu fais partie du passé

Despite the quality of her releases, singing was never one of Zouzou’s great passions. Seemingly, partying was. Her tireless clubbing even led to Paris-Match magazine dubbing her “Zouzou la twisteuse”. In 1966, the French singer became romantically involved with Brian Jones and spent about a year living with the Rolling Stones guitarist in London. She returned to France in 1967 and cut this great track, which appeared on her second EP, Petit garçon. Two later spells in prison for drugs-related offences would consolidate her bad-girl reputation.

 

Linda Flavell

And the trouble with me is you

We’ve been humming this song for weeks, so it’s only right that it should be one of this month’s selection. In 1966, Glasgow’s Linda Flavell joined the Decca label, where she cut this fab Kenny Young/Artie Resnick track. The song had originally been recorded by US singer Bernadette Peters, but with more of a folk flavour. In Britain, though, the song was given a stompier sound, over which Linda delivers what is perhaps best described as a distinctive vocal. Sadly, the release failed to sell and Linda was left to conclude that the trouble with her may, in fact, have been, erm, her. Shame.

 

Mary di Pietro

I ragazzi vogliono sapere

Issued in 1964, this great track did little for Abruzzo-born Mary di Pietro. It was the second single cut by the singer-cum-actress. She’d joined the ARC label earlier that year for the release of Quello che conta, and after one further 45, she packed in her solo career. She resurfaced a year or so later as the lead singer of La Nuova Cricca, a group that picked up where La Cricca had left off – a bit like The Seekers/New Seekers, except that one member of La Cricca was part of the later group. However, even an appearance at the 1967 Cantagiro contest with T’accarezzerò se tu vorrai couldn’t bring them any serious chart action.

Hear Rocío Dúrcal Creo en ti

 

Creo en ti

Rocío Dúrcal

Hear Dana Valery You don't know where your interest lies

 

You don't know where your interest lies

Dana Valery

Hear Vivi Bach Dreamy Boy

 

Dreamy Boy

Vivi Bach

Hear Zouzou Tu fais partie du passé

 

Tu fais partie du passé

Hear Linda Flavell And the trouble with me is you

 

And the trouble with me is you

Linda Flavell

Hear Mary di Pietro I ragazzi vogliono sapere

 

I ragazzi vogliono sapere

Mary di Pietro

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Our pick of the pops

Rocio Durcal Creo en ti Vivi Bach Let's shake Dana Valery You don't know where your interest lies Linda Flavell Mary di Pietro 0 Bar small

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Zouzou - Petit garçon