donderdag 4 februari 2010

French Lingo Foreign Style #1: Peter & Conny

In the late Fifties, nearly every country had its own Elvis. Peter Kraus mimicked the German one, selling millions of records with chubby cheeks, his characteristic giggly chuckles, and loads of fakey attitude: no question, he was about as hip as a shoe tree, but then, his Parisian equivalent Johnny 'allyday proved that it didn’t take much to be a teen idol in post-war France either. In 1958, Kraus also tried to cash in on the Gallic market, with a French language cover of his own hit Ich denk an dich (I Think of You), with a nice arrangement by Werner Schafenberger, the svengali behind many of Kraus’s Polydor recordings. The French didn’t buy it, probably still too much „Achtung! Stehenbleiben!“ echoes in their ears. Perhaps a mistake: This is a little charmer of a song.

Peter Kraus – Je pense à toi
Peter Kraus – Ich denk an dich

Around the same time, Kraus teamed up with German 50s cutie star Conny Froboess in a string of Schlager movies and duet songs. Despite her seemingly orgasm-free freshman aura, Conny had some pronounced sexy groove, and the better songs. In 1961, she recorded Chez nous, written by Pierre Dorsey and Charles Gaston Dumont, a longing tune with accordion bittersweetness and solemn flute ... gee, what French language can do.

Thanks to the indispensable Roy Black for providing the songs.

Conny & Peter – Ich möcht’ mit dir träumen
Conny Froboess – Blue Jean Boy
Conny Froboess – Chez nous

1 opmerking:

  1. My mother was born in 1944, so she raved about Conny und Peter (I knew exactly whom the post would refer to). By then, Conny was past it, appearing occasionally on bourgoise TV shows to reminded us that she once was famous, and Peter Kraus — more Cliff Richard than Elvis — was just a perma-grinning square with teeth that had cost just a little too much to fix.