If I Never Sing Another Song

If I never sing another song:

In English first sung by Connie Francis. Also sung by Matt Monro.

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Shirley performing “If I Never Sing Another Song” live while striking a wonderful pose.

This song was originally sung in German about 1967 by Alexandra (born: Doris Treitz) who penned the lyrics herself. In German the title was “Illusionen” (Illusions). Other than “Zigeunerjunge”, this song was one of her greatest successes in her very short career. In 1967 she had been chosen as the best German new-generation singer, but she died very early on July 31st, 1969, when she was killed in a car accident when completely overworked.

Sometimes Alexandra also wrote lyrics for Udo Jürgens (born: Udo Jürgen Bockelmann) an Austrian singer and composer. He’s one of the most successful and popular pop musicians in Germany for decades. In 1950 at the age of 16 he won an Austrian composer’s competition with his song “Je t’aime”. His first record was released in 1954, but his first successes came in the 1960’s. In 1960 Germany with Udo Jürgens’s song “Jenny” he won at a pop festival in Knokke, Belgium, and this song became a number one hit in Belgium. He got a press-prize for the best single artist of the festival. And in 1960 he wrote the hit-song “Reach For The Stars” especially for Shirley Bassey. Later he also recorded this song, but didn’t have the same success with it as Shirley.

Udo Jürgens performed live with Shirley Bassey in 1974 in the huge Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro in front of 40000 people. Udo’s “Alguien Canto”, his Spanish version of his song “Was ich dir sagen will”, then became a hit in whole South America for months.

In 1980 Udo Jürgens was given the “Country Music Award” from ASCAP for “Buenos Dias, Argentina”. He has got the award “Goldene Europa” (Golden Europe) eight times and these are only a few of the many awards, prizes and accolades he has achieved.

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From a Dutch magazine (July 1977)

IN THE WARM SAND OF THE BAHAMAS UDO JÜRGENS FOUND SOMETHING VERY SPECIAL:

Singer Udo Jürgens made the discovery of his life; When things got too hectic in his own country he decided to go to the Bahamas for a while. There was very special surprise waiting for him. 

The sun is high up in the blue sky. Palms rustle in the wind and the emerald green sea splashes on the shore. All over the beach there are sunbathers and one of them is the famous singer Udo Jürgens. He is enjoying himself with a huge pint of lager in his hand. Then he gets up and strolls to the salty water to take a refreshing dive into the water. He walks past the other guests and stops in front of one.

The dark beauty that nestled herself on a towel caught his attention. Udo can’t believe his eyes and then softly mumbles: “No, this is such a coincidence. Shirley Bassey is also here!”

Spontaneously he says to her: “Hi Shirley, nice weather isn’t it?” and he smiles at her.

Shirley is just as surprised. She recognizes Udo immediately and invites him to come over and sit with her. Very soon the two icons are talking about show-business like colleagues. 

Udo: “It is so great to meet her here. Just when I am taking a vacation I am meeting one of my greatest idols. I admire Shirley very much, so you can imagine that this is an unforgettable encounter for me”. Udo is taking a break from his tiring tours in the fairylike atmosphere of the Bahamas. He is enjoying his success tremendously because he had to work very hard to get it. There was a time he lived in a small attic and he was very much in debts. “Yes”, Udo says laughingly, “Now I live in a beautiful house and have huge tax debts. So you see: life is never perfect.” Udo thought it would be wiser to leave his country for a while, especially because his tax inspector was asking him all these difficult questions.

Udo is happy with the recognition he got with his work. Fame and fortune don’t mean as much to him as the fact that everywhere in the world people adore his music. That is what he fought for and that is what he achieved.

“I admire Shirley Bassey so much and she looks stunning. But when you see her on stage it just takes your breath away. What an act and what a craftsmanship. Again I am so happy I met her here”. For Udo it is not only love at first sight for the Bahamas but also for Shirley Bassey. “Yes”, he says excited. “I already fell in love with her voice years ago and now even more. “But”, he says jokingly desperate: “I am afraid my love will never be answered”.

He closes his eyes and is enjoying himself, no longer accountable. He is here to rest and that is what he will do!

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From a German newspaper

UDO JÜRGENS PLAYBOY OF THE BAHAMAS:

Udo with world star Shirley Bassey. She is the singer with the strongest voice…

Play in the water with Shirley Bassey, barbecue with Uschi Glas, sail with Graham Bonney and a flirt with a dark beauty- Our Udo (Jürgens) is a great guy. Before his big German tour he wanted really to relax. He went to the Bahamas for ten days and he deserved it!

Lyrics:
In my heyday
Young men wrote to me
Everybody seemed to have time to devote to me
Everyone I saw or swore they knew me
Once upon a song
Main attraction, couldn’t buy a seat
The celebrities, celebrities would die to meet
I’ve had every accolade bestowed on me
And so you see
If I never sing another song
It wouldn’t bother me
I’ve had my share of fame
You know my name
If I never sing another song
Or take another bow
I would get by, but I’m not sure how
Always posing, but you love it all
Though you have to learn to act like you’re above it all
Everything I did the world applauded
Once upon a star
Strange citations, hung on every wall
Got a scrapbook full of quotes,
I can’t recall it all
There were times I felt the world belonged to me
And so you see
If I never sing another song
It wouldn’t bother me
I’ve had my share of fame
You know my name
If I never sing another song or take another bow
I would get by, but I’m not sure how
But I’m not sure how
But I’m not sure how
 

5 thoughts on “If I Never Sing Another Song”

  1. Thank you Pieter. I really enjoyed reading about the background of this lovely song which happens to be a favorite of mine. I enjoyed the articles and the lovely pictures of both Mr. Jurgens and DSB on the beach. I really prefer how DSB sings this song in the second video. What year was that performance Pieter. I was thinking DSB should have sang this song at her 80th Birthday Celebration broadcast. Thanks again Pieter!!!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Great song and fantastic performances! I think too this would have been a good song for her to sing at her recent celebration but then there are SO many! I love her singing in the first clip, technically perfect but somehow Shirley always ratches up a notch or two in a ‘live’ concert and this one from Amsterdam I believe, is no exception. We have been so lucky to have witnessed such talent – thanks Pieter for reminding us – have a great weekend to all – Terry.

    Liked by 2 people

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