COCOHEINEN: CLIFF RICHARD ICONE de la MUSIQUE
A CHART-TOPPING MUSICAL ICON: What is it that makes Sir Cliff Richard tick ? 
From rock 'n' roll beginnings in the late 50s Cliff settled into the rôle of family entertainer, as demonstrated in his hit movies. Norrie Paramor, as Artiste and Repertoire Manager at EMI Records, Studio 2 at Abbey Road, was instrumental in extending and enhancing both Cliff's and the Shadows' range as recording artists. He introduced strings and the rest, and the result was magic. Ballads and emblematic tunes became their hallmark. Soon Cliff Richard was neither a carbon copy of Elvis Presley, Ricky Nelson, Jerry Lee Lewis or Little Richard, nor the Shadows avatars of Chet Atkins, Duane Eddy or the Ventures.
A significant turning point in his life came in 1964 when he became a Christian. His religious beliefs have informed his approach to life ever since. For a time he thought of giving up pop music to focus on teaching Christianity, before being persuaded to use his celebrity as a means of promoting the faith. He has released some gospel albums in the ensuing years.
In 1968 he had his first number one for 4 years with 'Congratulations', which he sang as Britain's entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. It lost out on claiming the prize by a single vote.
In the early 70s he hosted 'It's Cliff', his own variety show on the BBC. Between 1970 and 1979 he had only 3 top ten singles. In September 1979 'We Don't Talk Anymore 'peaked at number one. He was well and truly back after a gap of 11 years.
Throughout the 80s Cliff was ever present in British popular culture, teaming up with the anarchic characters from the BBC sitcom 'The Young Ones' (which frequently referenced Cliff) to record another version of 'Living Doll' for Comic Relief in 1986. It secured him another number one after 1959. Cliff toured a lot and staged his biggest concerts at Wembley stadium in June 1989 entitled 'From A Distance-The Event'.
Both 'Mistletoe and Wine' and 'Saviour's Day' went to number one in the late 80s and early 90s.
In 1995 Cliff became the first British star to be knighted as a reward for his long career and extensive charity work. As the 90s closed Sir Cliff defied radio station bans to score another number one with 'The Millennium Prayer', the words of the Lord's Prayer sung to the tune of Auld Lang Syne.
In the 2000s fewer singles were released, but the fans are more loyal than ever, as evidenced by the response when tickets for shows go on sale. They sell out almost immediately. The 'Final Reunion' tour with the Shadows filled arenas across Europe.
This trend is not likely to abate in the current decade.
The Fifties rather than the Sixties
Although he missed out on education having left school at 17 to take up employment as a poorly paid clerk to help his impecunious parents who had come aboard a battleship in 1948 straight from India to the country of their ancestors, he achieved fame and fortune through a combination of luck, hard work and perseverance. Caring, consistent, open and generous, he is committed to his loyal fan base, family and friends. A faithful Christian, he promotes love, understanding, forgiveness, and resents being judgemental. He firmly believes God works in secret and diverse ways. He is very much involved in Charity work at home and abroad, raising funds for organisations and donating part proceeds of his concerts and income to Tearfund and through the Cliff Richard Charitable Trust Ltd. He is also active in promoting tennis among very young people in the UK. There is a well-established Cliff Richard Tennis Foundation which is now under the umbrella of the Lawn Tennis Association. He admits he is very much a child of the Fifties than the Sixties, having imbibed the values of thrift, simplicity and trust from his parents who were born in Burma and India respectively, and had fared well in India until 1947 but had to start all over in a place which was new to them. Though he has always been drawn to rock 'n' roll, he admits he has always felt uneasy about sex, drugs and fakes. He laments pervasive permissiveness and he diets and does some gym to keep fit.
Simple and optimistic, but not 'holier than thou' !
“I can't say that Christianity is the sole provider of truth. It would be arrogant to claim that ; there are clearly all sorts of good and truthful things that come from other philosophies. Anyone who genuinely seeks God will find the path. It happens to be the one that works for me and has worked for millions before me. It is very simple- the path is Jesus-and maybe it is the simple logic of Christianity that I, being not well-educated, find so appealing.” (MLMW, p. 360)
He values good manners, honesty and he is an outright perfectionist, judging by the premium he places on dress rehearsals before his shows get under way. His Soulicious American guests unanimously underlined his professionalism in recent interviews. His rendition of 'Miss you nights' encapsulates the genuine grief caused to him by his dear departed : father and mother, friends : Jill Dando and Princess Diana, collaborators : Peter Gormley, Diane Saunders and George Hoffman, fellow artists : Adam Faith and Billy Fury…
Michael Jackson and Amy Winehouse have also moved on too early, and in recent television interviews Sir Cliff Richard has paid tribute to them and expressed his dismay at such losses for all of us. Adele is also one of his favourites while Justin Bieber, the Canadian wonder boy, has just started on his course. We can only wish they last a quarter or a half as long in this age of downloads and toxic assets !
Category : Musique (CLIFF Richard)
| Write a comment
lilithewitch, le 30-12-2011 à 20:26:28 :
Je l'ai partagé aussi avec les membres du forum... c'est grâce au journaliste et grâce à toi que cet article pourra faire le tour du monde
lilithewitch, le 30-12-2011 à 20:24:43 :
merveilleux articles... dans une presse inattendue
Merci Coco, cet article apparu en deux parties est merveilleux, une belle découverte surtout qu'il s'agit d'un journal inattendu, d'un endroit magique et féérique 'Île Maurice' ... un endroit qui incarne le luxe pour la beauté, le site, la langue, une île dont on rêve, tout comme l'artiste dont il parle, notre Cliff
cliffette, le 30-12-2011 à 17:12:56 :
Bel article !
Quel plaisir de lire cet éloge !
serge, le 30-12-2011 à 16:29:02 :
il serait temps que les médias anglais reconnaissent cliff à sa juste valeur et lui rendre hommage comme il se doit 'c'est un bon début)