Wim De Craene
Wim De Craene
With the income he earned as a sweep and a barman, de Craene bought his first guitar. In late 60s, he was a member of the Flemish folkgroup Ja, and was discovered by Miel Cools. At eighteen he went to Amsterdam to get to live closer to his mentor Ramses Shaffy. Shaffy let him perform in the café-chantant 'T Cloppertjen. As a way of saying thank you and expressing his admiration de Craene named his son Ramses. The year 1975 was his most successful year as an artist.
Tim (from his album Alles is Nog Bij Het Oude), Rozane (from his album Brussel) and his duet with Della Bosiers, Mensen Van 18, became hits. Considering the subjects of his songs De Craene was usually inspired by people he knew. Because he found that more people would feel addressed when he used common first names, many of his songs bear titles such as Tim, Marieke, Kristien, Elke, Rikky or Marcellino. Not all of these songs are about people who bear that name. Tim, for example, is about his newborn son, Ramses, but because that name woudn't fit the melody, de Craene used the name of the son of one of his best friends.
Rozane was written for actress Chris Thys, the sister of Leah Thys. In 1977 De Craene wrote his first musical, Help, ik win een miljoen (Help, I'm winning a million). In the second half of the 70s De Craene popularity decreased. In 1978 he organized a prestigious concert in Wetteren, Belgium for his new album Wim de Craene is ook nooit weg, but barely 70 people attended. The singer tried to get rid of the stigma 'theatre arts' and experimented with different musical styles such as pop, rock, classical and disco. On the album Perte Total from 1980 he mixed rock, ballads and electronic music. Later that decade he was also inspired by new wave.
Unfortunately, a large part of these experiments weren't popular and many of them are generally seen as failures. The experiments that did work, however, are still cherished by its admirers. Yet De Craene felt misunderstood. In 1981 he separated his wife. In 1983 he took part in the preselection for the Eurovision with the song Kristien, looking for recognition and success.
In a tumultuous finale, won by Pas De Deux, he ended third. The hit Breek Uit Jezelf meant a brief new start in in 1987, but after that he did not sell well. In 1988 he wrote his second musical, John de Lichte. In 1990 Decraene died. Officially he committed suicide by swallowing an overdose of antidepressants. It is generally assumed that he didn't get over a broken relationship. In 2005 his son Ramses declared in a Humo-interview that he has always had the feeling his father was murdered. Wim de Craene received more recognition after his death than during his life.
His songs are still played and songs such as De Kleine Man, Tim, Rozane, Mensen Van 18 and Breek Uit Jezelf are now recognized as classics. Discography Albums Wim De Craene (1973) Alles is nog bij het oude (1975) Brussel (1975) Rozerood-oranje (1975) Wim De Craene is ook nooit weg (1977) Perte Totale (1980) Kraaknet (1983) Via Dolorosa (1988) Singles Recht naar de kroegen en de wijven (1970) Portret van gisteren (1970) De kleine man (1974) Tim (1975) Rozane (1975) Marcellino (1976) Help ik win een miljoen (1978) St. Tropez (1980) Ravage (1980) Hoor (1982) Ik kan geen kikker van de kant afduwen (1982) Het exuberante leven van Leentje De Vries (1982) Kristien (1983) Rikky (1983) Laat me met je meegaan (1983) Breek uit jezelf (1987) Vrijwillig (1988) Leen (1990) Enkel in een broekje (1990) Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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