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Austropop legend Wilfried dies aged 67

Sad news from Austria on this day. Their 1988 Eurovision entrant Wilfried Scheutz has died. The singer, composer and actor was aged just 67.

Wilfried: The Austropop legend

Wilfried has always been an active face in the Austrian music scene. He was one of the founders of what later became known as Austropop. Weirdly, the singer was also as outsider in the same genre. His success varied through the years, but Wilfried never left the scene.

After his cancer diagnosis, he never quit his career. Last month, he released his last album, Gut Lack. From that album, Was Wird? was released as the single, including a video clip, which you can see here. In the video, Wilfried looks back at his career, taking out several LPs from his earlier years. His career lasted 43 years, releasing his first album back in 1974.

Wilfried moved with the times. His single Ziwui Ziwui from 1974 was a big hit and clearly followed the rock ‘n roll trend, while also staying true to his local dialect. In the early 1980s, New Wave was the latest music trend. Reason enough for the singer and his team to release Highdelbeeren.

Eurovision 1988

Austrian broadcaster ORF had seen the succes Wilfried had had for over twenty years. He may have been a controversial figure due to his music, but his tracks landed at the top of the charts time after time. In 1988 ORF decided to ask him to fly the flag in the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest in Dublin.

He wrote his own entry, together with Klaus Kofler and Ronnie Herboltzheimer. The result was Lisa, Mona Lisa. In the song, he sings about his love for a woman and compares it to the mysteries of the Mona Lisa. Europe wasn’t impressed: Austria finished in last place. At the end of voting, Lisa, Mona Lisa had received zero points.

Wilfried’s success never reached the heights of the 70s and early 80s anymore. In 2012, his album Tralala  meant a comeback. That comeback resulted in a 2014 documentary about him and his role as anti-hero of the Austropop genre.

The thoughts of the entire ESCXTRA.com Team are with Wilfried’s family in these difficult times. Let’s look back at his Eurovision entry, ‘Lisa, Mona Lisa’ below.

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