Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Laura Branigan

Solitaire (Branigan)

First recorded by Martine Clemenceau (FRA #50 1981).
Also recorded (as “Immer Mehr”) by Milva (1982).
Hit version by Laura Branigan (US #7 1983).

From the wiki: “‘Solitaire’ originated as a 1981 recording in French by Martine Clemenceau for whom ‘Solitaire’ was a modest hit in France, peaking at #50 on the French Pop chart. Written by Clemenceau herself, the French version of ‘Solitaire’ concerned a recluse who shuts himself away from a world moving toward nuclear war. In 1982 ‘Solitaire’ was also rendered in German as ‘Immer Mehr’ and recorded by Milva.

Gloria (Branigan)

First recorded by Umberto Tozzi (ITA #2/SUI #1/SPA #1/FRA #3 1979).
Hit versions by Jonathan King (UK #65 1979), Laura Branigan (US #2/UK #6/CAN #1/AUS #1 1982).

From the wiki: “‘Gloria’ was originally composed and written in Italian by Umberto Tozzi and Giancarlo Bigazzi (‘Self Control‘). Tozzi himself made the first recording of ‘Gloria’ in 1979. The original version of ‘Gloria’ was a love song as was the first English-language rendering of the song recorded by its lyricist Jonathan King to reach #65 UK in November 1979 (video unavailable).

Self Control

Co-written and first recorded by Raf (ITA #1/SWZ #1 1984).
Other hit version by Laura Branigan (US #4/UK #5/CAN #1/GER #1/SUI #1 1984).

From the wiki: “‘Self Control’ was co-written by Italian singer Raffaele Riefoli (‘Raf’) with Giancarlo Bigazzi (who had also co-written Branigan’s hit ‘Gloria‘) and Steve Piccolo. The song was first recorded by Raf but both it and Branigan’s recording weres also released contemporaneously in Europe, with both songs ascending various Euro music charts at the same time.

“Branigan’s version first hit #1 in Germany on June 15, 1984; Raf’s version first hit #1 in Italy on June 23, 1984. The only other territory where Raf topped the charts was in Switzerland but Branigan’s recording, there, would end the year as Switzerland’s most-successful single. ‘Self Control’ also afforded Branigan a #1 hit in Austria, Sweden and South Africa and was also a smash hit for Branigan in Norway (#2), Ireland (#3), Australia (#3) and the UK (#5).”

Turn the Beat Around

First recorded by Vicki Sue Robinson (US #10 1976).
Also recorded by Laura Branigan (1990).
Other hit version by Gloria Estefan (US #13/UK #21 1994).

From the wiki: “”Turn the Beat Around” was written by brothers Gerald and Peter Jackson of the R&B outfit Touch of Class. Vicki Sue Robinson recorded her version on September 26, 1975 cutting her lead vocal in a single take after recording her own multi-tracked chorale vocals.

“Like the other cuts on Robinsons’s debut album Never Gonna Let You Go, ‘Turn the Beat Around’ was recorded at RCA Studios with producer Warren Schatz who recalls the basic master of the song was recorded ‘on a Friday after a very depressing week of rain [and] I hated [the track]! I listened to it in my office and I just couldn’t get it. It had been such a bad week that I just couldn’t hear anything with an open mind. Then David Todd, the head of disco promotion at RCA, came into my office and he went crazy over the track! He convinced me to finish it as soon as possible.’

The Power of Love

Co-written and first recorded by Jennifer Rush (UK #1/GER #17 1985 |AUS #1/IRE #1/GER #3 1986).
Other hit versions by Laura Branigan (US #26 1987) and Celine Dion (US #1/UK #4/CAN #1/AUS #1 1993).
Also recorded by Air Supply (1985).

From the wiki: “‘The Power of Love’ was first recorded by Jennifer Rush in 1984. The American-born Rush had been recording for CBS (Frankfurt) with producers Gunther Mende and Candy de Rouge (alias of Wolfgang Detmann) since 1982. The song, written by de Rouge, Mende, and Rush with Mary Susan Applegate, took Rush to the top of the UK Singles Chart in 1984 and into the German Top 20 in 1985. Rush filmed a low-budget music video in NYC in the fall of 1984, with the primary intention of entering the U.S market, but was unsuccessful.

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