#

Nena - 99 Luftballons

Beginning in 1982, Nena became one of the most successful pop stars Germany had ever seen, especially given the unique success of the original German-language version of the single "99 Luftballons" in the U.S. in 1984. With the full name of Nena Kerner, she had spent one year as vocalist for the Stripes (who disbanded after just one unsuccessful album in 1980), then assembled a band in Berlin called Nena. The lineup included herself as vocalist, Carlo Karges on guitar, Uwe Fahrenkrog-Petersen on keyboards, Jürgen Dehmel on bass, and Rolf Brendel on drums. Their debut single, "Nur Geträumt," became a number one success in German-speaking countries after the band's first TV appearance on the Musikladen TV program on August 21, 1982. "99 Luftballons" followed, quickly becoming a worldwide smash, although by mid-1985, sales of Nena's records, and the attendance numbers of her 1985 tour dates, dropped, which led to the eventual end of the band in mid-1987. Beginning in 1989, Nena worked as a solo artist, releasing albums of songs composed mainly by herself and befriended musicians she chose as co-authors. Throughout the '90s, she could be seen regularly on German TV (hosting a variety show series called Metro in 1993). She stayed true to her unique musical blend of melodic vocals paired with various rock styles ranging from the Beatles to the harder sounds of the Rolling Stones and even the Ramones (with the harder rock sound being her preferred style when on tour). Beginning in 1990, she also made a number of albums specifically for children and did voice-overs or contributed songs to animated movies and cartoon series. 2002 found Nena celebrating the 20th anniversary of her breakthrough with an album of new versions of her hits, Feat. Nena: Live. To everyone's surprise, the audience response was sensational, actually replicating the runaway success of 20 years before.

Turn on sound via the video player controls.
Previous Next