Bert Kaempfert

Bert Kaempfert album Bert Kaempfert was born in Hamburg, Germany, where he received his lifelong nickname, Fips, and studied at the local school of music. A multi-instrumentalist, he was hired by Hans Busch to play with his orchestra before serving as a bandsman in the German Navy during World War II. He later formed his own big band, toured with them, then worked as an arranger and producer, making hit records with Freddy Quinn and Ivo Robić.

As a producer, Kaempfert also played a part in the rise of The Beatles when he signed a Liverpool-based singer named Tony Sheridan, who was performing in Hamburg, and needed to recruit a band to play behind him on the proposed sides. He auditioned and signed the Beatles, and recorded two tracks with them during his sessions for Sheridan: "Ain't She Sweet", sung by rhythm guitarist John Lennon and the instrumental "Cry for a Shadow", co-written by Lennon and lead guitarist George Harrison. Kaempfert's recording of the Beatles, even as a backing band for Sheridan, provided an impetus to their subsequent success, even though none of the Kaempfert-recorded sides resembled the music for which they became famous.

Kaempfert's own first hit with his orchestra had been in 1960, "Wonderland by Night". Wonderland by Night, which was recorded in July 1959, couldn't get a hearing in Germany. Instead, Kaempfert brought the track to Decca Records in New York, who released it in America in 1959; with its haunting solo trumpet, muted brass, and lush strings, the single topped the American pop charts and turned Bert Kaempfert and Orchestra into international stars. Over the next few years, he revived such pop tunes as "Tenderly", "Red Roses for a Blue Lady", "Three O'Clock in the Morning", and "Bye Bye Blues", as well as composing pieces of his own, including "Spanish Eyes (Moon Over Naples)", "Danke Schoen", and "Wooden Heart", which were recorded by, respectively, Al Martino, Wayne Newton, and Elvis Presley. Frank Sinatra had a #1 hit with Kaempfert's "Strangers in the Night" in 1966.

Kaempfert's albums include:
- Afrikaan Beat and Other Favorites (1962, Decca DL 4273 (mono), DL 74273 (stereo))
- April in Portugal (1959, Decca DL 8881 (mono), DL 78881 (stereo))
- Bert Kaempfert Now! (1971, Decca DL 75305)
- Blue Midnight (1965, Decca DL 4569 (mono), DL 74569 (stereo))
- Bye Bye Blues (1966, Decca DL 4693 (mono), DL 74693 (stereo))
- Dancing in Wonderland (1960, Decca DL 4161 (mono), DL 74161 (stereo))
- Fabulous Fifties… And New Delights (1973, MCA MCA-314)
- Free and Easy (1970, Decca DL 75234)
- Gallery (1974, MCA MCA-447)
- The Happy Wonderland of Bert Kaempfert (1966, Polydor K2M 5051 (mono), K2S 5052 (stereo))
- Hold Me (1967, Decca DL 4860 (mono), DL 74860 (stereo))
- The Kaempfert Touch (1970, Decca DL 75175)
- Lights Out, Sweet Dreams (1963, Decca DL 4265 (mono), DL 74265 (stereo))
- Living It Up! (1963, Decca DL 4374 (mono), DL 74374 (stereo))
- Love That Bert Kaempfert (1967, Decca DL 4986 (mono), DL 74986 (stereo))
- The Magic Music of Far Away Places (1965, Decca DL 4616 (mono), DL 74616 (stereo))
- A Man Could Get Killed (1966, Decca DL 4750 (mono), DL 74750 (stereo)) Film soundtrack.
- The Most Beautiful Girl (1974, MCA MCA-402)
- My Way of Life (1968, Decca DL 75059)
- Orange Colored Sky (1970, Decca DL 75256)
- Strangers in the Night (1966, Decca DL 4795 (mono), DL 74795 (stereo))
- Sweet and Gentle (1963, Longines Symphonette Society LW 304 (mono), LWS 304 (stereo))
- That Happy Feeling (1962, Decca DL 4305 (mono), DL 74305 (stereo))
- That Latin Feeling… (1964, Decca DL 4490 (mono), DL 74490 (stereo))
- Three O’Clock in the Morning (1965, Decca DL 4670 (mono), DL 74670 (stereo))
- To the Good Life (1973, MCA MCA-368)
- Traces of Love (1969, Decca DL 75140)
- Warm and Wonderful (1969, Decca DL 75089)
- With a ‘Sound’ in My Heart (1962, Decca DL 4228 (mono), 74228 (stereo))
- Wonderland By Night (1960, Decca DL 4101 (mono), DL 74101 (stereo))
- The Wonderland of Bert Kaempfert (1961, Decca DL 4117 (mono), DL 74117 (stereo))
- The World We Knew (1967, Decca DL 4925 (mono), DL 74925 (stereo))

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