Charley says SONG! Tom Helsen presents Barbara Dex – I Am

7Digital / Live Performance / iTunes

A good song is a good song. Regardless of who sings it.

Tom Helsen is a Flemish singer / songwriter who isn’t afraid to colour outside of the lines. Songs like ‘Sun In Her Eyes‘ are essentially pop, but have earned him respect from a more indie audience. Despite this success Tom doesn’t feel too good to do things a little bit different than what is expected of him. To name but a few things, he released a song with Milk Inc. producer Regi, he was a judge on Flemish ‘Soapstar Superstar’, despite being very much happily married and having kids he was ok with kissing a guy in the video for ‘Every Little Thing‘, he translated his hit ‘Goodbye‘ into Dutch for former ‘Idool 2003’ contestant Wim Soutaer to record…

For his new project Tom has written an album of songs for his favourite female voices. ‘The Truth About That Girl And Me’ will feature the likes of Hannelore Bedert, Lady Linn, Eva De Roovere, Sarah Bettens from K’s Choice, Jacqueline from Krezip… Over all these indie crowd pleasers Tom chose Barbara Dex to be on the lead single.

Barbara Dex is anything but indie. She shot to fame in 1993 when she represented Belgium at the Eurovision Song Contest. ‘Iemand Als Jij‘ is possibly the most beautiful song to ever come last in the competition. Unfortunately people were more interested in her homemade dress than her gorgeous ballad. These days the Barbara Dex Award is given out each year to the worst dressed Eurovision contestant.

Since 1993 Barbara has released some albums in Dutch and some albums in English. Mainly though she was one of those artist who stick around despite never really having another big hit. In recent years the only singles of hers that charted were ‘Crazy‘ and ‘One Life‘. Both are songs she competed with in Eurosong, the Belgian National Final.

The brilliant thing about ‘I Am‘ is that this all hasn’t stopped the song from getting playlisted on indie radio Studio Brussel and even the cultured people at Flemish Radio 1 have given it their seal of approval. I hope this song is going to be huge. Not only for the idea behind it, but also because it’s just a really beautiful song. If I had to compare it to something out there I would maybe say that it wouldn’t sound out of place on a Marit Larsen or Laura Jansen album.

The song isn’t in full on YouTube yet, but you can check out a sample on 7Digital, watch a short live performance at Studio Brussel or simply download the entire thing on iTunes.

See also: Charley says LIST! 3 Small Updates

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