jeudi 11 août 2016

"Ooh, Yes I Do" by Luv': the real record sales in France and why it didn't become a classic in my country....

During Luv's heyday, their singles were successful in 1978 and 1979 in a large part of Continental Europe (Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Denmark) but also overseas (South Africa, Zimbabwe and New Zealand). France was a difficult pop market for them.

However, I found proof of their real chart performance in this territory (see article posted on September 16th, 2014 and article posted on May 10th, 2015). In addition to "You're the Greatest Lover" and "Trojan Horse", one record was particularly popular in my country: "Ooh, Yes I Do" peaked at #10 in May 1980. 

Before 1984, French charts based on record sales were not published in mainstream media. Only industry insiders knew the real figures. The public could only rely on unofficial lists (including "Hit-Parade RTL"). In November 1984, things changed when TV channel Canal + aired the "Top 50" in association with SNEP (French recording industry association), Nielsen and IPSOS

Record chart specialist Fabrice Ferment (who published the book "40 ans de tubes" in the early 2000s) posted online the real charts before 1984 and based on sales figures (SNEP), royalties and statistics from Cogedep (supermarkets network) and Savapc (Prisunic - Monoprix - Fnac).

Recently I've found out that "Ooh, Yes I Do" sold 200.000 copies in France alone according to Ferment's research. Click here to see a list of the best selling singles of 1980. I was only 2 years old back then so I didn't remember anything of Luv's brief success in my country.

"Ooh, Yes I Do" among the best selling singles of 1980 in France

As a Frenchman, one question immediately came to my mind: "why didn't "Yes I Do" become a classic in France though it sold quite well here?".

Here are the reasons why Luv' have been unsung in the land of wine, cuisine and haute couture:

* When "Ooh Yes I Do" reached the French Top 10, the girls went on a promo tour in Mexico and were busy promoting their next single "One More Little Kissy" in their homeland. Maybe the ladies should have performed more often in Paris and provincial cities so the public knew them better. 

* Shortly after their success on French charts, Patty Brard suddenly left Luv'. It brought Holland's hitmachine to a standstill.  It took a couple of months to relaunch the group with a renewed line-up (Ria Thielsch replaced Patty). But this new formation didn't last long and in March 1981 Luv' disbanded. 

* When the nostalgia for the music from 1970s and 1980s became popular in France in the 1990s and 2000s, "Yes I Do" was not included in CD compilations and was not played on oldies radio stations. That's why this track was forgotten and the younger French generation did not know anything about Holland's greatest girl group unlike other acts from the same era (ABBA, Boney M. and Village People). 


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