The year was 1975 and Karen Falk hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm.
In a contest of nineteen songs, the fourth performer on stage was a German singer who used every ounce of her powerful voice to perform Ein lied kann eine brücke sein, or A song can be a bridge.
Joy Fleming only achieved seventeenth place but her song is one of those that has stood the test of time. You don’t have to win to be remembered.
She was born Erna Raad on 15 November 1944 in Rockenhausen and in 1987, became the only German to be signed to the USA soul label Stax.
During a concert in Frankfurt she performed first and was said to have caused anxiety to Janis Joplin as there was the threat that she would steal the show! Many well known artists have given her praise including Ella Fitgerald and Dame Shirley Bassey.
Her appearance in the German National Final of 1975 wasn’t enough for the lady known as the Queen of German Soul as she attempted to go to the contest three more times. In 1986 she sang a song called Miteinander coming fourth. In 2001 she was part of an arrangement with Swiss television and, along with Lesley Bogaert and Brigitte Oelke they sang Power of trust. Second place was to be the result. The following year was her most recent attempt when she finished up with another second place in the German selection. The 2002 song was Joy to the world and she sang it along with the group Jambalaya.
Joy is a very family person, with four children and her partner, French composer and pianist Bruno Masselo. She lives in Mannheim. We hope that she had a very happy 70th birthday.
Joy Fleming sings Ein lied kann eine brücke sein in 1975
Joy Fleming sings Miteinander in 1986
Joy Fleming with Lesley Bogaert and Brigitte Oelke sing The power of trust in 2001
Joy Fleming sings Joy to the world in 2002