Dschinghis Khan (song)

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"Dschinghis Khan"
Self-titled song by Dschinghis Khan German vinyl single.jpg
Standard artwork (Jupiter release pictured)
Single by Dschinghis Khan
from the album Dschinghis Khan
LanguageGerman
B-sideSahara
Desert Land (International)
Released1979 (1979)
Recorded1979
StudioOlympia Studios Munich
GenreDisco
Length2:59
LabelJupiter Records
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)Ralph Siegel
Dschinghis Khan singles chronology
"Dschinghis Khan"
(1979)
""Moskau""
(1979)
Music videos
"Dschinghis Khan" on YouTube
"Dschinghis Khan (2020)" on YouTube
Eurovision Song Contest 1979 entry
Country
Artist(s)
  • Louis Hendrik Potgieter
  • Wolfgang Heichel
  • Henriette Heichel-Strobel
  • Edina Pop
  • Steve Bender
  • Leslie Mándoki
As
Language
Composer(s)
Lyricist(s)
Conductor
Finals performance
Final result
4th
Final points
86
Entry chronology
◄ "Feuer" (1978)
"Theater" (1980) ►

"Dschinghis Khan" (German pronunciation: [ˌdʒɪŋɡɪs ˈkaːn]; "Genghis Khan") is a song by German disco group Dschinghis Khan. It was the West German entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1979 and released as the first single from the group's debut album, Dschinghis Khan (1979). It was a number one hit in West Germany, and a top 10 hit also in Austria, Finland, Norway and Switzerland. Cover versions by a number of other artists were subsequently released as singles and album tracks.

Background and release[edit]

"Dschinghis Khan" was performed ninth on the night, following Switzerland's Peter, Sue & Marc and Pfuri, Gorps & Kniri with "Trödler und Co" and preceding Israel's Milk and Honey with "Hallelujah". At the close of voting it had received 86 points, coming fourth in a field of nineteen.

The song was written and composed by the prolific duo of Ralph Siegel and Bernd Meinunger, and owes a considerable debt to disco music, specifically of the Boney M. tradition. As the name suggests, it is in praise of the titular Mongol warrior, with verses extolling his military ("and about his enemies he only laughed / because nobody could resist his strength") and sexual ("and each woman, that he liked / he took into his tent / they said, a woman who did not love him / did not exist anywhere in the world / he fathered seven children in one night") prowess. Indeed, the entirety of his band are the subjects of this paean, being described as exceptional drinkers with a devil-may-care attitude to life ("and the devil gets us early enough").[1]

The song had a lasting success in Japan. In 2014 it was certified gold for 100,000 digital downloads, after first being released digitally in 2006.[2]

In 2020, the Dschinghis Khan lineup led by Wolfgang Heichel and Stefan Track re-recorded the song and filmed its music video in Mongolia, featuring Heichel interacting with a Mongolian tribe.

Track listings[edit]

Original German single
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Dschinghis Khan"2:59
2."Sahara"
  • Siegel
  • Meinunger
3:00
Total length:5:59
International single
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Genghis Khan"
  • Christian Dornaus
  • Meinunger
3:06
2."Desert Land"
  • Dornaus
  • Meinunger
  • Kurt Hertha
  • Siegel
3:00
Total length:6:06

Charts[edit]

Frederik version[edit]

"Tsingis Khan"
Frederik - Tsingis Khan.jpg
Single by Frederik
from the album Tsingis Khan
LanguageFinnish
B-side"Linda, Linda"
Released1979 (1979)
Recorded1979
GenreDisco
Length3:00
LabelFinnlevy
Songwriter(s)
Frederik singles chronology
"Sano että pidät musta"
(1978)
"Tsingis Khan"
(1979)
""Ii (Siellä on se joki)""
(1979)
Music videos
"Tsingis Khan" on YouTube

Finnish singer Frederik covered the song as "Tsingis Khan" in his 1979 album Tsingis Khan, with Finnish lyrics by Juha Vainio. According to the website of Frederik, the composer of the original song, Ralph Siegel, considered the Frederik version to be even better than the original.[10] Siegel offered Frederik to also cover the song "Hadschi Halef Omar", which he did as "Sheikki Ali Hassan" in a 1980 single. "Tsingis Khan" peaked at No. 14 on the Finnish Singles Chart and was certified Gold.

Frederik's version of the song is also used as ring entry theme by Russian boxer Denis "Tsingis Khan" Shafikov.

Track listing[edit]

7" single
No.TitleWriter(s)ArrangementLength
1."Tsingis Khan"Esa Nieminen3:00
2."Linda, Linda"
  • Chrisse Johansson
  • Hans von Eijck
  • Michel Boesveld
  • Peter Tetterooo
Kalervo Halonen3:27
Total length:6:27

Charts[edit]

Chart (1979) Position
Finland (The Official Finnish Charts) 14

Berryz Kobo version[edit]

"Dschinghis Khan"
Berryzjingisukancdonly.jpg
Regular Edition cover
Single by Berryz Kobo
from the album 5 (Five)
LanguageJapanese
B-side"Darling I Love You" (Berryz Kobo ver.)
ReleasedMarch 12, 2008[11]
Recorded2008
Genre
Length3:11
LabelPiccolo Town
Composer(s)Ralph Siegel
Lyricist(s)
Producer(s)Tsunku
Berryz Kobo singles chronology
"Tsukiatteru no ni Kataomoi"
(2007)
"Dschinghis Khan"
(2008)
"Yuke Yuke Monkey Dance"
(2008)
Music videos
"Dschinghis Khan" on YouTube

The Japanese girl idol group Berryz Kobo also released a cover of the song, albeit with toned-down lyrics, which do not make mention to the more explicit details pertaining to war, rape or the consumption of alcoholic beverages found in the 1979 original.

This single release marks the group's first cover song to be slotted as an a-side in a single. There are two versions to this single, a limited edition with a DVD (PKCP-5112~3) and a regular edition (PKCP-5114 – first pressing containing a photo card and a ticket for a raffle to attend an event promoting the single).[12]

The song was used as the main song to the group's musical, Dschinghis Khan ~Wa ga Tsurugi, Nessa wo Some yo~ (ジンギスカン~わが剣、熱砂を染めよ~), running through January 2008.[13]

The single debuted at number 4 in the Oricon Daily Singles Chart and ranked 5th for the week.[14] It was Berryz Kobo's highest selling single until the release of "Motto Zutto Issho ni Itakatta / ROCK Erotic" in 2013.

In 2009, the single was released in Thailand. It became one of the top songs of the year, ranking 26th in the Channel V Thailand's Asian Top 50 Year-End Chart of 2009.

Track listings[edit]

CD single
No.TitleLyricsMusicArrangementLength
1."Dschinghis Khan" (Jingisu Kan (ジンギスカン))
Ralph SiegelDance Man3:11
2."Darling I Love You" ((ダーリン I LOVE YOU))TsunkuTsunkuDance Man4:22
3."Dschinghis Khan" (Instrumental)   3:09
Total length:10:42
Limited Edition DVD
No.TitleLength
1."Dschinghis Khan" (Dance Shot Ver.[15]) 
Single V
No.TitleLength
1."Dschinghis Khan" (Video Clip) 
2."Dschinghis Khan" (Close-up Ver.) 
3."Making Eizō" ((メイキング映像, "Making-of")) 

Charts[edit]

Chart (2008) Peak
position
Weeks
on chart
Sales
First
week
Total
Japan (Oricon Daily Singles Chart) 4
Japan (Oricon Weekly Singles Chart) 5 8[16] 30,667[14] 37,096

Awards[edit]

Japan Cable Awards[edit]

The Japan Cable Awards are sponsored by the National Cable Music Broadcasters Association (全国有線音楽放送協会, Zenkoku Yūsen Ongaku Hōsō Kyōkai).

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2008 "Dschinghis Khan" by Berryz Kobo Cable Music Award[16] Won
Grand Prix* Nominated

* awarded to the most requested song of the year on the cable radio

Dschinghis Khan × Berryz Kobo single[edit]

"Dschinghis Khan Tartar Mix"
Dschinghis Khan×Berryz Kobo Dschinghis Khan Tartar Mix Regular Edition (PKCP-5122) cover.jpg
CD single cover
Single by Dschinghis Khan×Berryz Kobo
Language
  • Japanese
  • German
ReleasedSeptember 17, 2008 (2008-09-17) (CD single)
November 25, 2008 (2008-11-25) (Single V)
Recorded2008
Genre
LabelPiccolo Town
Composer(s)Ralph Siegel
Lyricist(s)
Producer(s)Tsunku

"Dschinghis Khan Tartar Mix" (ジンギスカン タルタルミックス, Jingisu Kan Tarutaru Mikkusu) is a single by the collaboration unit Dschinghis Khan×Berryz Kobo (ジンギスカン×Berryz工房). It was released on September 17, 2008, following the success of Berryz Kobo's version. The title track "Dschinghis Khan Tartar Mix" features a mix of both groups' vocal tracks. The single also includes both Berryz Kobo and Dschinghis Khan's versions. The music video for the new song had Berryz Kobo digitally placed into a video of an old Dschinghis Khan performance, so that the two groups seem to appear together at the ZDF-Hitparade television show.

The single peaked at No. 35 on Oricon's weekly singles chart, staying in the list for three weeks.[17]

Track listings[edit]

CD single
No.TitleLyricsMusicArrangementLength
1."Dschinghis Khan Tartar Mix" (Jingisu Kan Tarutaru Mikkusu (ジンギスカン タルタルミックス))
Ralph SiegelKaoru Ōkubo4:10
2."Dschinghis Khan" (Jingisu Kan (ジンギスカン))
  • Meinunger
  • Yamamoto
SiegelDance Man3:12
3."Dschinghis Khan" (Original Version)MeinungerSiegelSiegel3:06
Total length:10:28
Single V
No.TitleLyricsMusicArrangementLength
1."Dschinghis Khan Tartar Mix"
  • Meinunger
  • Yamamoto
SiegelŌkubo4:18
2."Dschinghis Khan Tartar Mix (β Ver.)" ((ジンギスカン タルタルミックス(β Ver.)))
  • Meinunger
  • Yamamoto
SiegelDance Man2:08
3."Making Eizō" ((メイキング映像, "Making-of"))   5:43
Total length:11:58

Charts[edit]

Chart (2008) Peak
position
Weeks
on chart
Sales
First
week
Total
Japan (Oricon Weekly Singles Chart) 35 3[18] 2,847[17]

Other covers[edit]

  • Swedish dansband Vikingarna released a Swedish-language version of the song, "Djingis Khan", on the 1979 album Kramgoa låtar 7[19] and as a 1979 single with "Annie's sång" acting as B-side. They also scored a Svensktoppen hit with the song for 10 weeks between 24 June-26 August 1979, including topping the chart.[20]
  • Spanish singer Iván published a version with unrelated lyrics under the title "Sin Amor" (1979).
  • Hong Kong Cantopop singer George Lam released a Cantonese cover of the song "Cheng Ji Si Han" (成吉思汗),[21] which is included in his 1979 album Choice (抉擇).
  • In Chile, the musical group Malibú published a version in Spanish, called "Genghis Khan" (1979).
  • A Thai language version of this song was released by the Thai band Royal Sprites in 1979.[22]
  • "Yidden", a cover with unrelated Yiddish lyrics, first recorded by Mordechai Ben David in 1986, is a popular Jewish line dance.[23]
  • Another version of this song was performed by Die Apokalyptischen Reiter on the Dschinghis Khan EP (1998).
  • The Korean dance/hip-hop group Koyote have also made a cover of the song, "Aja! Aja!" (아자! 아자!), which appears on their 2007 compilation album Dance Best and 9.5.
  • A spoof version of this song is routinely performed by the comedy group Blondon Boys, in the Chilean variety late show Morandé con Compañía. It's called "Somos heterosexuales por opción" ("We are heterosexual by choice").

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Dschinghis Khan" lyrics, Diggiloo.net
  2. ^ レコード協会調べ 4月度有料音楽配信認定 [Record Association Investigation: April Digital Music Download Certifications]. RIAJ (in Japanese). May 20, 2014. Retrieved May 20, 2014.
  3. ^ "Dschinghis Khan – Dschinghis Khan" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 29 October 2021.
  4. ^ "Dschinghis Khan – Dschinghis Khan" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 29 October 2021.
  5. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2021). "Dschinghis Khan". Sisältää hitin - 2. laitos Levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla 1.1.1960–30.6.2021 (PDF) (in Finnish). Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava. p. 68. Retrieved 21 June 2022.
  6. ^ "Dschinghis Khan – Dschinghis Khan". VG-lista. Retrieved 29 October 2021.
  7. ^ "Dschinghis Khan – Dschinghis Khan". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved 29 October 2021.
  8. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Dschinghis Khan – Dschinghis Khan". GfK Entertainment charts. Retrieved 29 October 2021.
  9. ^ "Top 100 Single-Jahrescharts" (in German). Offizielle Deutsche Charts. 1979. Retrieved 29 October 2021.
  10. ^ And it has stayed as an ever green hit in Finland. Bio, Frederik official website(in Finnish)
  11. ^ "Berryz工房『写真満載★タイ・バンコクの初ライブを密着レポート!』-ORICON STYLE ミュージック" (in Japanese). Oricon. 2010-04-29. Retrieved 2012-03-11.
  12. ^ ジンギスカン, Berryz工房 Archived February 26, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, Piccolotown
  13. ^ "Berryz工房、モンゴル菓子を手土産に舞台応援!" (in Japanese). Oricon. 2007-12-26. Retrieved 2012-03-11.
  14. ^ a b "Oricon CD single Weekly Ranking - ORICON STYLE Ranking (2008-03-24)" (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
  15. ^ ジンギスカン, Berryz工房, HMV Japan
  16. ^ a b "ジンギスカン Berryz工房のプロフィールならオリコン芸能人事典-ORICON STYLE" [Berryz Kobo's Oricon profile] (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
  17. ^ a b "Oricon CD Single Weekly Ranking - ORICON STYLE Ranking (2008-09-29)" (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
  18. ^ "ジンギスカン タルタルミックス ジンギスカン×Berryz工房のプロフィールならオリコン芸能人事典-ORICON STYLE" (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
  19. ^ "Kramgoa låtar 7" (in Swedish). Svensk mediedatabas. 1979. Retrieved 28 April 2011.
  20. ^ "Svensktoppen". Sveriges Radio. 1979. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  21. ^ "Cheng Ji Si Han - YouTube". YouTube.
  22. ^ "German Classics: Dschinghis Khan - The Royal Sprites". Eurocovers. April 16, 2011.
  23. ^ Goldstein, Yoni (August 22, 2018). "rom Yoni's Desk: The only Yiddish word I needed to know". The Canadian Jewish News.

External links[edit]

Dschinghis Khan version
Frederik version
Berryz Kobo version