14 February 2018

The Clown - He Was A Singer/ Rock n Roll Man

Falsetto singing clown with a rather bombastic tune. Don't ask me. 

Label: CBS
Year of Release: 1977

While my curiosity was tweaked by the seller claiming that this was a "glam rock" record (don't get excited - it's not), I have to admit I really bought it on the strength of the sleeve. Just look at that clown. See his moody, masculine gaze, staring out into the middle distance, beyond the flaps of the big top, out into a world where he could be a super singing star... it's both absurd, amusing and slightly frightening all at the same time (and it might even feed into the fantasies of anyone out there with a clown fetish).

The track itself is a melodramatic piece of orchestral bombast with vocals that occasionally veer into a high falsetto. "He is a winner/ but sometimes a sinner/ THE CLOWN... he's the fire/ we are the flame... THE CLOWN" the singer informs us somewhat disturbingly. Melodically, it pushes closely towards "Delilah" and the soundtrack to a seventies disaster film. If this doesn't bring lots of images of the BBC Testcard into your mind's eye, or weird incidents in the middle of "The Poltergeist", you're a stronger person than I.

The flip "Rock N Roll Man" is a bit of rock and roll bar-room boogie which is surprisingly mid-paced and gentle and lacks the kind of dynamism you'd expect given the title.

I have absolutely no idea who "The Clown" was, apart from perhaps a metaphor for showbusiness and the deep, dark depression behind the jokes and gags of the humble circus entertainer. This appears to have been his only single, and so far as I can ascertain it was only released in Germany. If anyone has any more information, they know what to do.


H.Em.Merich said...

"The Clown" behind the mask on the picture sleeve is probably Candy deRouge (he wrote that song) himself, real name: Wolfgang Detmann. Lives in Wuerzburg, Franconia, North Bavaria, Germany. Had big success with his band "Red Baron" (two longplayers, more than eight 45s). Probably biggest success: he was producer/composer of "The power of love", No.1-UK, performed by Jennifer Rush.

Unknown said...

I believe there was an alternate version of this titled 'He was a Clown' credited to The Singer (pictured as a bloke in full regalia except for his actual unmade-up face).

I also believe that when I take drugs they talk to me about gravediggers' strikes being a figment of a crematorium's existence.

Dame Agnes Guano said...

That cover is unbelievable sinister!