Vivo per lei

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"Vivo per lei"
Cover from the duet version with Hélène Ségara
Single by Andrea Bocelli
from the album Romanza
B-side "Voglio restare così"
Released 1996 (Italian & Spanish versions)
April 1997 (German version)
December 1997 (French version)
Format CD single
Recorded 1995
Genre Operatic pop
Length 4:23
Label Polydor, Polygram
Writer(s) Gatto Panceri, Valerio Zelli
Producer(s) Mauro Malavasi
Andrea Bocelli singles chronology
"Per amore"
(1995)
"Vivo per lei"
(1996)
"Vivo por ella"
(1996)

"Vivo per lei"
(1996)

"Vivo por ella"
(1996)

"Time to Say Goodbye"
(1996)

"Time to Say Goodbye"
(1996)

"Ich lebe für sie"
(1997)

"Je vis pour elle"
(1997)

"Ich lebe für sie"
(1997)

"Je vis pour elle"
(1997)

"The Prayer"
(1999)
Giorgia singles chronology
"Riguarda noi"
(1995)
"Vivo per lei"
(1996)
"Strano il mio destino"
(1996)
Hélène Ségara singles chronology
"Auprès de ceux que j'aimais"
(1997)
"Je vis pour elle"
(1997)
"Loin du froid de décembre"
(1998)

Vivo per lei (English: "I Live for Her" or "I Live for It") is the name of a 1995 song recorded by Italian artist Andrea Bocelli as duet with Giorgia for his album Romanza. The song was also released as a duet with other female artists, including Marta Sánchez in Spain and Latin America, Hélène Ségara in francophone countries, Judy Weiss in German-speaking countries, and Sandy Leah Lima in Brazilian Portuguese.[1]

The version with Marta Sánchez topped the Spanish singles chart in 1996 under the title Vivo por ella and is available on her album One Step Closer. The version with Ségara was released in December 1997 and became a hit in Belgium (Wallonia) and France where it reached number one on the charts. It was the fifth single from Ségara's first studio album, Cœur de verre. The version with Judy Weiss was also number one in Switzerland in 1997.

Song information[edit]

The song in Italian was originally written by the group O.R.O. (Manzani – Mengalli – Zelli) in 1995 for their album Vivo per.... The song won the "Disco per l'estate" edition of that year. During the same year, the lyrics of the song were rewritten still in Italian by Gatto Panceri and the song was relaunched in the duet between Andrea Bocelli and Giorgia. The new lyrics are characterized by the fact that lei ("it") in the title refers to "music", whereas in the original song lei ("her") referred to a girl.[2]

Thus the new version of Vivo per lei became a tribute to "music"; that is what is referred in the title by lei in Italian, ella in Spanish, elle in French, ela in Portuguese, and sie in German. While the French and German versions have Bocelli singing in Italian, and Ségara and Weiss providing the French and German lyrics respectively, in the Spanish recorded version both Bocelli and Sánchez sing in Spanish, and in the Portuguese version, Bocelli sings in Spanish and Sandy in Portuguese. On live performances of the song, Bocelli may sing exclusively in Italian. The song's piano melody resembles an Elton John composition.[3]

For international versions, German lyrics were written by Michael Kunze, French lyrics by Art Mengo, and Spanish lyrics by Luis Gómez Escolar. There is also a Greek version called Se Thelo edo sung by Dimitra Galani and Giorgos Karadimos.[citation needed]

During Ségara's first tour, the song was performed, but Bocelli was replaced by Bruno Pelletier. This version is available on the live album En concert à l'Olympia, as second track on the second CD. It was also included on Ségara's compilation Le Best of and on Bruno Pelletier's album Sur Scene (2001).

The song was covered in 2004 by Calogero, Chimène Badi and Patrick Fiori on Les Enfoirés' album Les Enfoirés dans l'espace.[4]

Meaning of the song[edit]

Panceri and Bocelli's version of the song clearly evokes the blind tenor's attachment to music as the pillar and love of his life: "I live for it".

The song is interesting in that its lyrics can tend confuse people whose mother tongue is English. The English-speaking listener is challenged to uncover whom the person referred to by lei ("her") is. Italian, and other Romance Languages routinely assign gender to all their nouns, wheras English, perhaps with the exception of the use of she or her to refer to ships, never uses the gender pronouns to replace nouns that refer to inanimate objects. The Italian word "lei" translates to either "her" or "it", depending on its context. On first instance it seems the song refers to a woman, perhaps a lover, as the first verse is sung by Bocelli; then when the female voice starts, it seems that person is somebody who is respected and loved by both men and women. The lyrics progress to say that "she" is always the protagonist and if there was another life, the singers would give their lives for her again. Eventually, Bocelli sings, vivo per lei, la musica, "I live for it, the music", revealing that the song talks about "music" and how musicians devote their lives to it.[citation needed]

To English speakers, the song is thus subject to various interpretations by listeners, with some dedicating it to a beloved female figure such as a girlfriend, wife, or mother.[citation needed] The meaning of the song becomes far clearer when the feminine pronoun referring to the feminine noun "musica" is replaced in its English translation by the correct gender neutral pronoun for the English noun "music": which is the word "it".

The beauty of the Romance language versions is that they retain their ambiguity due to the possibility that the feminine pronoun may refer to a woman or a girl, or any inanimate object or word that has the feminine gender. The love of a woman thus becomes a true metaphor for Bocelli's love of music.

Chart performances[edit]

In France, the song went straight to number 9 on 6 December 1997, and reached number one four weeks later, thus becoming the sixth bilingual number-one singles in France. It topped the chart for five consecutive weeks, then dropped slowly, remaining for 22 weeks in the top ten, 33 weeks in the top 50 and 42 weeks in the top 100.[5] It was certified Platinum by the SNEP.[6] In Belgium (Wallonia), the single debuted at number 18 on 20 December and achieved number one in its sixth week and stayed there for five weeks, then dropped and fell off the top ten after 15 weeks and the top 40 after 28 weeks.[7] To date, it is the best-selling single for Ségara, and the second one for Bocelli (the first is "Con te partirò").

In Switzerland, the version with Judy Weiss entered the chart at number six on 27 April 1997. It hit number one for a sole week and remained for 26 weeks in the top 50. The song achieved moderate success in Austria where it peaked at number 22 on 18 May 1997 and fell of the top 40 after ten weeks.

Track listings[edit]

Italy
CD single
No. Title Length
1. "Vivo per lei"   4:23
2. "Vivo per lei - Ich lebe für sie" (by Andrea Bocelli and Judy Weiss) 4:23
Francophone countries
CD single
No. Title Length
1. "Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)"   4:23
2. "Voglio restare così" (by Andrea Bocelli) 3:51
Digital download
No. Title Length
1. "Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)"   4:23
2. "Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)" (live at the Olympia, by Hélène Ségara and Bruno Pelletier) 4:32
German-speaking countries
CD single
No. Title Length
1. "Vivo per lei - Ich lebe für sie"   4:23
2. "Voglio restare così" (by Andrea Bocelli) 3:51

Charts and sales[edit]

Chart successions[edit]

Preceded by
"Lonely" by Nana
Swiss number-one single
15 June 1997 (1 week)
Succeeded by
"Mmmbop" by Hanson
Preceded by
"Savoir aimer" by Florent Pagny
French SNEP number-one single
3 January 1998 - 31 January 1998 (5 weeks)
Succeeded by
"The Reason" by Céline Dion
Preceded by
"Hasta siempre" by Nathalie Cardone
Belgian (Wallonia) number-one single
24 January 1998 - 21 February 1998 (5 weeks)
Succeeded by
"My Heart Will Go on" by Céline Dion

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Benassi Bros feat Sandy" (in French). Dynaprod Management. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  2. ^ "vivo,per,lei,bocelli,giorgia,galleria,della,canzone,italiana,italian,song". galleriadellacanzone.it. Retrieved 15 August 2011. 
  3. ^ Habib, Elia (2002). Muz hit.tubes (in French). Alinéa Bis. p. 409. ISBN 2-9518832-0-X. 
  4. ^ "Les Enfoirés dans l'espace, track listing and charts" (in French). Lescharts. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  5. ^ a b ""Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)", French Singles Chart" (in French). Lescharts. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  6. ^ a b "French single certifications – H Segara/A Bocelli – Vivo per lei" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. 
  7. ^ a b ""Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)", Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  8. ^ ""Vivo per lei", Dutch Mega Top 100" (in Dutch). Dutchcharts. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  9. ^ ""Vivo per lei - Ich lebe für sie", Austrian Singles Chart" (in German). Austriancharts. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  10. ^ ""Vivo per lei - Ich lebe für sie", Swiss Singles Chart" (in German). Hitparade. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  11. ^ "1997 Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 30 May 2008. 
  12. ^ "1997 French Singles Chart" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. Retrieved 30 May 2008. 
  13. ^ "1997 Swiss Singles Chart" (in German). Hitparade. Retrieved 21 December 2009. 
  14. ^ "1998 Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  15. ^ "1998 French Singles Chart" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  16. ^ "Ultratop − Goud en Platina – 1998". Ultratop & Hung Medien / hitparade.ch. 
  17. ^ "Italian single certifications – Andrea Bocelli & Giorgia – Vivo per lei" (in Italian). Federation of the Italian Music Industry.  Select Online in the field Scegli la sezione. Select Week -- and Year ----. Enter Andrea Bocelli & Giorgia in the field Artista. Click Avvia la ricerca

External links[edit]