I have been involved with the music industry for decades. During that time, due to living in the US, much of the music I listened to was by American or British singers. Not because I liked them more, but because those are the singers heard on radio and TV in the United States. Those and an occasional Australian, Spaniard or Brazilian thrown into the mix.
Since I left the US a decade ago, however, I have been more interested in singers from other regions of the world.
Occasionally Asia, where I currently live, but primarily Europe, where I am originally from and where I plan on moving back to within the next couple of years.
Over time, I have also become more passionate about promoting European singers here on Leo Sigh. And that is for one gigantic reason.
It is bad enough European singers, overall, are not promoted much in the United States (unless, of course, they are British) and, as we all know, the United States is the center of the music industry.
Even more sad, though, is many European singers are not supported to the level they should be in their own countries, where huge swathes of the population prefer to listen to, and buy, American or British music.
And that, I don’t understand.
Why you should support European singers
The singers from your country represent your country and represent you.
They represent your culture, your values, your ideas. They represent your art, and your musical history. In some ways, they are also one of your country’s greatest commodities, as they help make money for the country they live in and, thus, support the economy itself.
That being said, I do not understand why, if you are European, you would not be supporting European singers over those from places like America and Great Britain.
Particularly when so many American and British singers are mega-stars making tens of millions of dollars a year, while artists from your own country are often struggling to make a living.
Austrian singers are a prime example
Now, I have always thought this way, but I found myself thinking more about it after a comment I heard Austrian singer Conchita Wurst make a few months ago. A comment along the lines of she wished Austrians would support Austrian singers more than they generally do.
So, I spent time looking through weeks of top 40 singles charts from Austrian radio station Ö3, and saw quickly what she said was true. Weeks and weeks of American or British singers at the top of Austrian top 40 singles charts, with only a few Austrian singers appearing anywhere.
It must be disheartening then to be an Austrian singer and see Rihanna, Meghan Trainor, Sam Smith, Taylor Swift, Ellie Goulding, and Ed Sheeran (they are just from this week’s chart) always at the top of the list, and Austrian singers, if they are found at all, often closer to the bottom.
But it is not just Austria this applies to. This repeats over and over again, in singles charts all over Europe.
And, I just don’t get that. I don’t get why you wouldn’t be proud of the music that comes from your country, and why you wouldn’t be supporting it with everything you have?
Americans certainly do with their artists. And so do the Brits. So why aren’t you?
Should you stop buying music from American and British artists?
Don’t get me wrong.
I don’t see anything wrong with enjoying music from American or British artists, heaven knows, I do (btw, I hold both British and American citizenship). But, when it comes to supporting them to the exclusion of those artists from your own country, artists who deserve just as much support as their American or British counterparts, I don’t understand the rational for it.
It is also hard for me then to have sympathy when Europeans grumble about “the music industry being centered in America” and “European singers never having a chance”.
Because if most of what you are buying is music from American and British singers, frankly, you are one of those people creating that reality, and you only have yourself to blame.
Start with these six European singers
So, where is all this going today? Because, if you have read what I write for any length of time, I am sure you know I usually have a purpose.
My purpose with this is nothing more than an announcement that, in future, you can expect to see and hear a lot more European singers on Leo Sigh than you will those from America and the UK.
Because singers from those two countries already have a million websites writing about and supporting them. Isn’t it about time European singers had a place where they received as much support?
And, if you are interested in hearing more European singers, here are just five of the ones I am currently listening to on a daily basis.
Nina Sublatti — Sublatti is from Georgia, and will be representing the country in the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 in Vienna and, she is, absolutely phenomenal. You can currently hear Nina Sublatti’s entire debut album in the YouTube video below.
Marco Masini — He is from Italy. I just discovered Marco Masini this week, and I can’t get enough of him. Here he is singing his song ‘Che Giorno è’ at the Sanremo Festival in Sanremo, Italy last week.
Indila — This fabulous singer is from France. She is of Indian, Egyptian, Algerian and Cambodian descent, which has made her exotically beautiful, and she has an ethereal loveliness to her voice you really should hear.
Softengine — They are an alternative rock band from Finland. They represented Finland in last year’s Eurovision Song contest, and recently released their debut album.
They are still young lads, but are already producing music that is catchy and cool.
Julien le Play — He is from Austria. He primarily sings in German, his voice is lovely, and his songs (mainly pop ballads) are gorgeous.
Then, of course, as a final addition, there is ‘my main girl’. The one who started me off thinking more and more about European singers. Austria’s Conchita Wurst and her latest single ‘Heroes‘.
Start off with these amazing European singers, and then keep stopping back to Leo Sigh in the coming months, as I will be showcasing an awful lot more.
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