What IS love? Haddaway knows. Have you ‘missed’ him?

The answers to those questions and more lie further on…! So you cannot fail to know who Nestor Alexander Haddaway (b.1965) is? In 1993, his debut single “What Is Love?” was HUGE. A number one in 13 countries and a top ten hit in over 30. Haddaway, as he preferred to be called professionally, spent the early-mid 90’s clocking up a string of smash hits, and then…well, what happened then…?

“What Is Love?” was released in May 1993 and immediately took the European dancefloors by storm, although America was initially lukewarm to it. It peaked at No.6 on the dance chart and No.11 on the singles chart, while the rest of the world made it of the ten biggest sellers on the year in dozens on countries. Haddaway had been signed by Coconut Records back in 1992 and began writing and recording a skip full of songs, twelve of which would make the final pressing, released very soon after “What Is Love?”. The album was a slow burner, making the top ten’s on most album charts across a fifteen month period.

During that time, four other singles were released, including “Life”, another number one and a top ten hit in 15 countries, making No.41 in the US and becoming his last chart appearance over there. The December ballad, “I Miss You”, was another big hit, particularly in the UK, where it took eight weeks to peak in the early weeks on 1994 and became his third consecutive top ten hit there. And it didn’t stop there, Haddaway added a fourth that Spring with “Rock My Heart”, which did scrape to No.25 on the US dance chart, while it completed a quartet of top five chart positions in Finland, of all places!

By now his material was two years old and Haddaway spent the second half of 1994 recording new music, the first single from which came in May 1995. “Fly Away” was pretty much more of the same, but new! The song was not so much of a grand re-entrance as many may of hoped for, although Finland once again came up trumps with a third chart topper! His second album, “The Drive”, was a blink and you miss it affair, only making the chart in five European countries. It featured two other single releases, “Lover Be Thy Name” and “Catch A Fire”, his last UK top 40 entry. Generally, interest in Haddaway fell away at this point. His third album, “Now Let’s Do It” went completely unnoticed, as did the lead single, “What About Me?”.

There was a renewed interest in “What Is Love?” in 1998 when the producers of the US TV show Saturday Night Live released the film ‘A Night At The Roxbury’ starring Chris Kattan and Will Ferrell as a pair of brothers brought together with their love for “What Is Love?”! It was not a massive success at the box office, but it’s a personal favourite and the scenes where they play “What Is Love?” over and over are both hilarious and great to hear the song. It did leave to a short revival in the song on both the charts and in popular culture, but it wasn’t so big that it afforded “What Is Love? a full blown renaissance.

Haddaway has released studio albums in 2001, 2005 and 2011 but without much success. A new remixed version of “What Is Love?” came in 2003 and in 2008 he teamed up with Dr. Alban (remember him from “It’s My Life” in 1992?, what happened to him?!) for the song “I Love The 90’s”. He teamed up with another 90’s ‘relic’, The Mad Stuntman (the one who likes to “Move It, Move It”) in 2012 for the song “Up And Up” and, hoorah, it broke the top twenty on the US dance chart, his highest charting position there in nineteen years! In recent years, Haddaway has toured with Londonbeat, Snap and Ace Of Base as part of a 90’s revival tour and has just released a new single, “I Wanna Be For You”!

Stay in touch with Haddaway through his WEBSITE and his FACEBOOK page

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Written by Christopher Smith

So perhaps you’ve read an article or two that I’ve written and wondered “just who is this character?”! Well I thought maybe it would be time to introduce myself and what I’m all about. Well it’s all about the music! Having been born in the late 1970’s I was heavily influenced by my parent’s love of ‘popular’ music and rock and roll of the 1950’s and 60’s. My Mother always said she should of married Elvis and my father was, and is still, in love with Sandie Shaw! But while my Dad’s tastes stopped in about 1967, my Mum carried on loving music throughout the 70’s, 80’s and beyond. My first memory was playing on the floor whilst my Mother was ironing one day with the radio on, and hearing ABBA’s “Super Trouper” dancing my nappy off to it! Maybe that’s where it all went wrong…?! Having been subjected to all and sundry in my infant years, I finally found my feet in the mid-1980’s and began ‘partying’ to the likes of Culture Club, Stevie Wonder(!), Elkie Brooks and Bananarama to name but a few! The year 1987 would have a profound effect on my listening tastes and from thereon in my life would be dominated with buying and listening to music. Any number of outstanding songs were released and listened to that year, most notably “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “La Isla Bonita”. That Summer my mind was completely taken over with music and sounds I’d never heard before and I was totally taken in by it all. My father would say “whaaar rubbish you got on naaaaao?” (I’m from Norfolk!) but I was hooked. And it continued so for the rest of the decade and the next. At the beginning of 1988 I ‘met’ my true love and the singer I’ve worshipped more than any other artist or group. You may know of her. She’s from Australia…! Aside from pop music, my tastes are many and varied and continues to grow and expand as I ‘mature’ in age. I’ve always been heavily interested in films and in particular the mechanics of film making and of course film music, so scores and subsequently orchestral music takes up a lot of my tastes and collection. 90’s dance and club tunes also takes up much of the space in my head and I’m surprised my brain has stopped shaking from the years of abuse it took being dragged to nightclubs, often three times a week in my 20’s! I find with each year that passes I regress back to my youth and of course the 1980’s. 80’s music dominates and the lust to see as many 80’s acts and singers play live now is insatiable. I’m still getting into the groove as much as every breath I take, but I’m never gonna give up listening to my heart and pumping up the volume, simply because I LOVE MUSIC…any kind of music!
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