Seventies Bookmark and Share

The belgian schlager and variete genre stays popular in the seventies. Canzonissima turns out to be a consistent factor which delivers artists like Jimmy Frey, Ann Christy, Marc Dex, Micha Marah and Nicole & Hugo their big break. Eddy Wally breaks through as typical Belgian charme-singer. Dutch/Flemish singer songwriting is delivered by Johan Verminnen, winner of the Ontdek de ster talentshow. One of his biggest hits is 'Laat me nu toch niet alleen' ('Dont leave me now'). Verminnen also writes for other artists and give Ann Christy her biggest hit with a translation of Bette Midlers The Rose. Other singer songwrites in this era are Kris de Bruyne and sarcastic protest singer Jan de Wilde. More bittersweet romantic singer/songwriting comes from architect Zjef Vanuytsel who delivers some well crafted Flemish folk-pop albums at the start of the seventies.

On the rockside of the spectrum things aren’t as easy though. Groups like Fifth Ball Gang, hardrock band Irish Coffee, symphonic rockband Banzaï and folkrock Pendulum come and go. Wallonie has a more interesting and consistent progrock scene with acts like Machiavel, PAZOP, Arkham and Cos. Their impact is marginal though. Wallonie also invented the Latin disco sound with Lou Deprijck and his Two man Sound (with the classic 'Que tal America') and Lou & the Hollywood Banabas who had a big hit with the reggae influenced 'Kingston Kingston'. French chanson is brought in Wallonie by Claude Semal, Philippe Anciaux and Jean Claude Watrin. More politically fuelled chanson is made by the project GAM (Groupe d‘action musicale).

Blending the Flemish song with rock is Bert De Coninck who has a hit with Evelyne. When punk comes to Belgium he tries that genre before disappearing from stage for years. Less blues but more typical pop is made by Raymond van het Groenewoud who started as guitar player for Verminnen but is very succesfull on his own in Belgium and Holland due to extensive touring

In 1977 punk also hits the Belgian coast and inspires the group Hubble Bubble with drummer Roger Jouret. Jouret would later be very succesful under the name Plastic Bertrand and his hit 'Ça plane pour moi'. Other punk bands are Kids, Chainsaw, X-Pulsion and Mad Virgins. More avant garde and not punk music is made in Wallonie with combo’s like Urban sax and Univers Zero who dig into jazz and classical music for inspiration. Jazz is made by guitarist Philip Catherine and electronica addict Marc Moulin. The latter would have a big influence on the electronic new wave of the eighties.



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