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Baccara

Spanish Flamenco artists, Mayte Mateus and Maria Mediolo were already performing together in 1977 for tourists when they were snapped up by RCA exec Leon Deane. Now named Baccara, the duo were partnered with Rolf Soja, who penned their debut, "Yes Sir I Can Boogie". Released in the middle of 1977, the song rocketed up the U.K. charts, scoring the band a #1 in September. On the strength of that song, their self titled debut album was an instant success, and a further follow up single, "Sorry I'm A Lady", gave the duo another U.K. hit in early 1978.

Touring across Europe brought Baccara a larger fan base and even wider audience for their follow up albums. Light My Fire was released in 1978 and spun off several singles, including "La Bamba" and "Parlez-vous Francais?". The latter, of course, was their entry for that year's Eurovision Song Contest, where they represented Luxembourg. Hot property, the duo found themselves on the European and U.K. television circuit appearing on Germany's Musikladen, and on England's Sacha Distel Show as regular guests while their disco was in fashion.

The band released just two more albums, Colours in 1979 and Bad Boys in 1981. The hit process continued in their native Spain, Germany and Japan during these three years, although Britain considered them little more than one or two hit wonders. Indeed, their final album as Baccara didn't even see release in that country.

By the time Bad Boys hit the racks, both Mateus and Mendiolo were increasingly focusing on their own solo ventures and, by 1983, this original incarnation of Baccara had split. However, by the middle of the decade, both women were leading their own versions of the band -- Mendiolo as Baccara, now paired with Marissa Perez, and Mateus as New Baccara, partnered first by Jane Comerford and, later, Gina T..

It was the Mendiolo/Perez duo that emerged triumphant heavy hitters on the HI-NRG scene during the late 1980s, releasing a string of club hits, "Touch Me", "Fantasy Boy" and "Call Me Up", which culminated in the confusingly titled New Baccara's Fun, Fun, Fun LP in 1990 -- the album also included a new version of "Yes Sir I Can Boogie".

Both versions of Baccara continued to record and perform throughout the 1990s, with a cover version of "Wind Beneath My Wings a massive U.K. club hit, while various hits packages have been released with without any real distinction between the two bands. Indeed in the late 1990s New Baccara dropped the first word from their name, again becoming Baccara. A hits package, Baccara 2000, was released in 1999. ~ Amy Hanson, All Music Guide

Written by Amy Hanson

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