European Essentials

ABBA – Dancing Queen

Sweden

Approximately 500 million records sold and countless awards won, Swedish outfit ABBA remain one of the most influential pop acts of all time. Jump-starting their international career with a famous Eurovision win, the band went on to release eight studio albums, two live albums, seven compilation albums and more than seventy singles.

Their 1976 song "Dancing Queen" reached the top chart position in 18 countries and was recently named by The Guardian as "the best pop song ever".

Laid Back – Sunshine Reggae

Denmark

One of the best known songs to have emerged from Denmark, "Sunshine Reggae" first made an appearance in 1983 when Copenhagen duo Laid Back released it preceding their second album, Keep Smiling.

Topping the charts in 21 countries at the time, the song remains one of the most played Danish songs, ranked recently as the 5th highest earning Danish song on a global level, following the likes of international stars Lukas Graham and MØ.

Jacques Brel – Ne Me Quitte Pas

Belgium Wallonia

Jacques Brel was a Belgian singer, songwriter, actor and director who composed and performed literate, thoughtful, and theatrical songs that generated a large, devoted following - initially in Belgium and France, later throughout the world.

He was widely considered a master of the modern chanson, and considered an inspiration to the likes of David Bowie, Alex Harvey, Leonard Cohen, Marc Almond and Rod McKuen.

Domenico Modugno – Nel Blu Dipinto di Blu (Volare)

Italy

Domenico Modugno is the first Italian "cantautore" (songwriter) and the symbol of Italian music worldwide.

He is known for his 1958 international hit song "Nel blu dipinto di blu" which won the Festival di Sanremo, received two Grammy Awards and sold more than 22 million copies around the globe.

Hozier – Take Me To Church

Ireland

Andrew Hozier-Byrne (born 17 March 1990), known mononymously as Hozier, is an Irish musician and singer-songwriter from Bray, County Wicklow, Ireland.

In 2013 he released his debut EP, featuring the hit single "Take Me to Church", and his second EP "From Eden" in 2014. His debut studio album, Hozier, was released in Ireland in September 2014 and globally in October 2014.

Sigur Rós – Hoppípolla

Iceland

One of Iceland's most iconic outfits, Sigur Rós continue to make internationally renowned music after more than 20 years as a band and seven studio album releases.

2017 sees Sigur Rós heading out on tour to bring new formations of their universally known tracks to stages around the world.

Imam Baildi – O Pasatebos

Greece

Imam Baildi is a very popular Greek group by Lysandros (drums, percussion) and Orestis (DJ, programming) Falireas blending the unique sound of rebetiko along with trip-hop, drum & bass and hip-hop influences.

Trad.Attack! – Imepuu

Estonia

Trad.Attack! invites you on an exciting journey to the mystical Estonian nature, traditions and people where the new and old collide and spark.

Trad.Attack! is fresh folk music from Estonia - friendly, passionate, powerful, dynamic, cheerful and true to the roots. Within three years they won 14 Estonian Music Awards and played in 29 countries.

Edith Piaf – La Vie en Rose

France

Born in 1915, Edith Piaf remains to this day the embodiment of the chanson française. Her hits “La vie en rose”, “L’hymne à l’amour” and “Non je ne regrette rien” earned her worldwide renown.

Suffering from health issues, the iconic French singer died in 1963, at only 47 years of age.

Sunrise Avenue – Hollywood Hills

Finland

Finnish rock outfit Sunrise Avenue released the single "Hollywood Hills" from the record Out of Style in 2011 to widespread acclaim. The track not only received huge radio support in their native Finland, but also in Germany, Sweden and far beyond.

The band continue to be one of Finland's most popular on an international level, frequently selling out stadium tours in Germany and cementing their success with the gold-selling 2013 album release Unholy Ground.

Falco – Rock Me Amadeus

Austria

Johann "Hans" Hölzel (19 February 1957 – 6 February 1998), better known by his stage name Falco, was an Austrian singer, songwriter and rapper.

"Rock Me Amadeus" reached No. 1 on the Billboard charts in 1986, making him the only artist whose principal language was German to score a vocal number-one hit in the United States.

Companyia Elèctrica Dharma – La Presó del Rei de França

Spain

With a career spanning over 40 years, Companyia Elèctrica Dharma is one of the most popular bands in the country, thanks to its mix of Catalan traditional music with jazz, rock and psychedelia. This highly attractive combination has been successful on international stages such as Rock in Rio.

Karel Gott – C’est La Vie

Czech Republic

Born in 1939 Karel Gott is a Czech singer. In the 1968 Eurovision contest, he represented Austria and won 13th place. He continued his international career, singing in English, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish, Polish, Slovak and Croatian. He remains one of the Czech Republic’s most popular artists.

Kraftwerk – The Robots

Germany

Without Kraftwerk, the world of music would be very different indeed. The "Beatles of electronic music", as they are sometimes called, have had a major impact on pop music. Whether synthpop, hip-hop, or Detroit techno – their influence is universal.

Jauns Mēness – Piekūns Skrien Debesīs

Latvia

Jauns Mēness was one of the most popular bands during the so called Singing Revolution in late 80s and 90s when Latvia regained its independence.

They blended Latvian folklore with their own material to a very youthful and uplifting effect. Also Jauns Mēness was the first Latvian bend to visit SXSW music conference in Austin, USA.

Serge Tonnar & Legotrip – Vollekslidd

Luxembourg

Serge Tonnar is one of the very few singer-songwriters in Luxembourg writing and singing in Lëtzebuergesch, the country's national language.

With his band Legotrip, he invents alternative touring concepts with great success.

Perfect – Autobiografia

Poland

Perfect is a Polish rock band founded in 1977 by drummer Wojciech Morawski, bass guitar player Zdzisław Zawadzki and lead guitar player Zbigniew Hołdys. They are one of the all-time most popular rock bands from/in Poland.

A-Ha – Take On Me

Norway

One of the best selling singles of all time, A-Ha's "Take On Me" is a classic slice of Norwegian pop, and a song that propelled the band to worldwide fame when it reached peak chart positions in more than 15 countries.

Equally as iconic as the song is the accompanying video, a sketched clip that became a worldwide hit on MTV and helped the band to climb to the top of the US charts, cementing the song's place in pop history.

Toots Thielemans – Bluesette

Belgium Flanders

Toots Thielemans (1922 - 2016), was a Belgian jazz musician mostly known for his harmonica playing and composing. He toured and recorded with musicians such as Oscar Peterson,

Bill Evans, Dizzy Gillespie, Kenny Werner, Pat Metheny, Jaco Pastorius, Elis Regina and Paquito D'Rivera. In 2009 he was designated a Jazz Master by The National Endowment for the Arts, the highest honor for a jazz musician in the United States.

Tomec & Grabber – Šijavica

Croatia

Dalmatian Dub is the album of downtempo/chillout music that mixes the sounds of traditional Croatian songs from Dalmatia region with contemporary electronic music, made by the famous Croatian choir "Klapa Šufit" and by artists Tomec-Grabber duo who are also working as a production team.

Antis – Pokstas

Lithuania

Antis is a Lithuanian postmodern rock band. It started as a joke in 1984 but soon Antis found itself at the front of pro-independence movement.

The band has recorded 6 studio albums, various live and greatest hits compilations and spinned the hits in four different decades.

Alkinoos Ioannidis – Agapisa Tin ‘pou Karkias

Cyprus

Alkinoos Ioannidis was born in Nicosia, Cyprus and he has released 1 solo albums, most of which have gone gold or platinum. He has also composed for the theatre in France, Russia, Greece and Cyprus.

Over the last 20 years, he has given more than 1.700 concerts in Greece and Cyprus and 100 international concerts.

Golden Earring – Radar Love

Netherlands

Best known in the U.S. for their hard rock material, Golden Earring have been the most popular homegrown band in the Netherlands since the mid-'60s.

The group was founded by guitarist/vocalist George Kooymans and bassist/vocalist Rinus Gerritsen in 1961; several years and personnel shifts later, they had their first Dutch hit, "Please Go," and in 1968 hit the top of the Dutch charts for the first of many times with "Dong-Dong-Di-Ki-Di-Gi-Dong," a song that broadened their European appeal.

David Bowie – Lazarus

United Kingdom

Bowie is the man who elevated his music to what can only be described as an art form. Driven by an entirely deeper dynamic than most pop artists, David Bowie inhabits a very special world of extraordinary sounds and endless vision.

Rodrigo Leão – Movimento Harmónico Simples

Portugal

One of the most emblematic and awarded Portuguese composers; his enchanted way with a melody has earned him an Oscar nomination and an ASCAP award (American Society of composers, authors and publishers) for the score of The Butler by American film director Lee Daniels.

A founding member of the most international Portuguese pop group, Madredeus; a successful solo artist with impressive collaborations with Beth Gibbons, Neil Hannon, Ryuichi Sakamoto or Ludovico Einaudi.