Vivo per lei

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"Vivo per lei"
Vivo per lei.jpg
Cover from the duet version with Hélène Ségara
Single by Andrea Bocelli
from the album Bocelli and 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
Songwriter(s) Gatto Panceri, Valerio Zelli
Producer(s) Mauro Malavasi
Andrea Bocelli singles chronology
"Per amore"
(1995) Per amore1995
"Vivo per lei"
(1996) Vivo per lei1996
"Vivo por ella"
(1996) Vivo por ella1996

"Vivo per lei"
(1996) Vivo per lei1996

"Vivo por ella"
(1996) Vivo por ella1996

"Time to Say Goodbye"
(1996) Time to Say Goodbye1996

"Time to Say Goodbye"
(1996) Time to Say Goodbye1996

"Ich lebe für sie"
(1997) Ich lebe für sie1997

"Je vis pour elle"
(1997) Je vis pour elle1997

"Ich lebe für sie"
(1997) Ich lebe für sie1997

"Je vis pour elle"
(1997) Je vis pour elle1997

"The Prayer"
(1999) The Prayer1999
Giorgia (Giorgia Todrani) singles chronology
"Riguarda noi"
(1995) Riguarda noi1995
"Vivo per lei"
(1996) Vivo per lei1996
"Strano il mio destino"
(1996) Strano il mio destino1996
Hélène Ségara singles chronology
"Auprès de ceux que j'aimais"
(1997) Auprès de ceux que j'aimais1997
"Je vis pour elle"
(1997) Je vis pour elle1997
"Loin du froid de décembre"
(1998) Loin du froid de décembre1998
Sandy singles chronology
"Vivo por Ella"
(1997) Vivo por Ella1997
"Escrito no Céu"
(2004) Escrito no Céu2004

"Vivo per lei" [ˈviːvo per ˈlɛi] (English: "I Live for Her") is a 1995 song recorded by Italian artist Andrea Bocelli as duet with Giorgia Todrani (under the stage name of "Giorgia" only) for his album Bocelli. The song was also released as a duet with other female artists, including Marta Sánchez in Spain and Spanish America, Hélène Ségara in francophone countries, Judy Weiss in German-speaking countries, Sandy in Brazilian Portuguese[1][1] and Bonnie Tyler in English under the title "Live for Love", though due to record company disputes their version was never released.

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 as a duet between Andrea Bocelli and Giorgia. The new lyrics were characterized by the fact that lei ("her") in the title referred to music whereas in the original song lei referred to a girl.[2]

Thus the new version of Vivo per lei became a tribute to music using the pronoun in the title: lei in Italian, ella in Spanish, elle in French, ela in Portuguese, and sie in German, as a metaphor. 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.[4]

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.[5]

Unreleased version[edit]

Bonnie Tyler recorded English vocals on the song in 1997, and the song was scheduled to be released as the lead single from her album All in One Voice (1998). It was retitled "Live for Love". Due to disputes between EastWest Records and Sugar Music, their version of the song remains unreleased. In a 2014 interview, Tyler recalled that EastWest asked for more retail royalty points than they agreed following a version Bocelli recorded with Sarah Brightman. Sugar Music refused their demands and terminated the collaboration.[6]

The English version of the song was performed by Bocelli (who performed in Italian) and Heather Headley. Their rendition of the song can be found in Bocelli's live album Vivere Live in Tuscany, originally released in 2007.

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 her".

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, whereas English, perhaps with the exception of the use of she or her to refer to ships or bad weather, never uses the gender pronouns to replace nouns that refer to inanimate objects. On first glance it appears the song refers to a woman, perhaps a lover, as the first verse is sung by Bocelli. The female voice in the second verse suggests that the 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 is another life, the singers would devote their lives to her again. Eventually, Bocelli sings, vivo per lei, la musica, "I live for her, music", revealing that the true meaning of the song is about music and how musicians devote their lives to music.[citation needed]

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.[7] It was certified Platinum by the SNEP.[8] 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.[9] 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 off the top 40 after ten weeks.

Track listings[edit]

CD single
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
1."Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)"4:23
2."Voglio restare così" (by Andrea Bocelli)3:51
Digital download
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
1."Vivo per lei – Ich lebe für sie"4:23
2."Voglio restare così" (by Andrea Bocelli)3:51
Brazilian Portuguese version
CD single
1."Vivo por Ella" (featuring Sandy)4:20

Charts and sales[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Benassi Bros feat Sandy" (in French). Dynaprod Management. Archived from the original on 10 January 2010. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  2. ^ "vivo,per,lei,bocelli,giorgia,galleria,della,canzone,italiana,italian,song". Retrieved 15 August 2011. 
  3. ^ Habib, Elia (2002). Muz hit.tubes (in French). Alinéa Bis. p. 409. ISBN 2-9518832-0-X. 
  4. ^ "se,thelo,edo,english,lyrics,karadimos,galani,greek,songs" (in Greek). greeksongs-greekmusic. Retrieved 17 July 2015. 
  5. ^ "Les Enfoirés dans l'espace, track listing and charts" (in French). Lescharts. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  6. ^ "Bonnie Tyler and Rhydian Roberts having a chat in the studio". RhydianOfficial Youtube Channel. Retrieved 9 March 2014. 
  7. ^ a b ""Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)", French Singles Chart" (in French). Lescharts. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  8. ^ a b "French single certifications – H Segara/A Bocelli – Vivo per lei" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. 
  9. ^ a b ""Vivo per lei (je vis pour elle)", Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  10. ^ ""Vivo per lei", Dutch Mega Top 100" (in Dutch). Dutchcharts. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  11. ^ ""Vivo per lei – Ich lebe für sie", Austrian Singles Chart" (in German). Austriancharts. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  12. ^ ""Vivo per lei – Ich lebe für sie", Swiss Singles Chart" (in German). Hitparade. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  13. ^ "1997 Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 30 May 2008. 
  14. ^ "1997 French Singles Chart" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. Archived from the original on 27 June 2009. Retrieved 30 May 2008. 
  15. ^ "1997 Swiss Singles Chart" (in German). Hitparade. Retrieved 21 December 2009. 
  16. ^ "1998 Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  17. ^ "1998 French Singles Chart" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. Archived from the original on 16 April 2009. Retrieved 9 June 2008. 
  18. ^ "Ultratop − Goud en Platina – singles 1998". Ultratop. Hung Medien. 
  19. ^ "Italian single certifications – Andrea Bocelli & Giorgia – Vivo per lei" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. 

External links[edit]