Some of you have questioned my logic in formulating a list of top Continental European pop songs of all time. One anonymous poster wondered how I could possibly choose Macarana over Las Ketchup's cleverly named hit "The Ketchup Song"? (Another local communist friend wanted to know how I could exclude Manu Chao. My answer: does he represent France, Spain or North Africa?) Another wanted to know where is Austria's favorite son Falco, the genius behind "Rock me Amadeus"? And then there's the Sweden problem. A few of you wanted to know how I could choose something, anything, by ABBA over say Europe or The Hives. This is no contest. The Hives and Europe combined will never out-sell even Roxette, let alone ABBA.
Still, all these points merit consideration. Firstly, I must say I have been deficient. Falco should have been in the first installment, if only because of the classic Simpsons' episode in which they turn the Planet of the Apes into "legitimate thee-ate-er", set to the music of "Rock me Amadeus". Get your paws off me, you dirty ape... Doctor Zaius! Doctor Zaius!
And, I missed out on Bjork's contributions. And who could forget "Barbie Girl" by Denmark's Aqua?
So, I am adding three more to the list. But first, a reminder. The only qualification: these songs are chosen because they have staying power, meaning we are just as likely to hear them on the radio 10 years from now as we were 10 years ago.
Country: Iceland -- Song: Human Behavior -- Artist: Bjork (post-Sugarcubes) -- '93
Country: Denmark -- Song: Barbie Girl -- Artist: Aqua -- '97
Country: Austria -- Song: Rock Me Amadeus -- Artist: Falco -- '86
Country: Germany -- Song: "99 Luftballoons" -- Artist: Nena -- 1984
Country: Norway -- Song: "Take on Me" -- Artist: A-ha -- 1985
Country: Italy -- Song: *"Gloria" -- Artist: Umberto Tozzi -- 1983
Country: Sweden -- Song: "Dancing Queen" -- Artists: Abba -- 1975
Country: Spain -- Song: "Macarena" -- Artist: Los del Rio -- 1993
Country: France -- Song: **"She" -- Artist: Charles Aznavour -- 1974
* redone in English by Laura Branigan with new lyrics
** while numerous French acts (Air, St. Germain, Noir Desir) of recent years deserve mention, only Chuck gave us a No. 1 hit in 1974.
Please help me find a better French single! And what about Portugal?