|"Rock Me Amadeus"|
|Single by Falco|
|from the album Falco 3|
|Released||16 June 1985 (US)|
|Genre||Neue Deutsche Welle|
|Bolland & Bolland|
|Falco singles chronology|
"Rock Me Amadeus" is a song recorded by Austrian musician Falco, for his third studio album Falco 3 (1985). The single was made available for physical sale in May 1985 in German-speaking Europe, through A&M. "Rock Me Amadeus" was written by Falco alongside Dutch music producers Bolland & Bolland. The single became the first German language song to peak at number one of the Billboard Hot 100 on 29 March 1986.
It topped the singles charts on both sides of the Atlantic. It was Falco's only number one hit in both the United States and the United Kingdom, despite the artist's popularity in Germany, his native Austria, and much of Europe.
Originally recorded in German, the song is about Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, his popularity and his debts. A longer version (eight minutes), named the "Salieri Mix", appeared on the initial US release of the album Falco 3. The song was inspired by the movie Amadeus. For the US release, the song was remixed with an English background overlay. There was never a full English version.
The song was released in Europe in 1985 in its original, German-language version. For the international markets (United States, UK, Japan etc.), several different single and extended mixes were produced by Rob Bolland; none of them were solely an English-language version, but the international single versions reduced the German lyrics. However, the video, which featured the original European version, was used worldwide.
The song's music video mixes elements of Mozart's time with 1980s contemporary society. Falco is shown in a 20th-century-style dinner jacket, walking past people in eighteenth-century formal wear. Later, he is shown dressed as Mozart, with wild colored hair, being held on the shoulders of men dressed in modern motorcycle-riding attire. At the end, the two crowds mix.
The video for the 1991 remix is a much more sexualized version, starting with the refrain 'sugar sweet', with extra footage spliced throughout, including a similar black carriage riding at night with the driver covered in lights, escorted by police motorcycles, scantily clad girls; in black leather riding outside it, and bright neon fashions inside, resembling earlier-century formal wear. A different crowd in a more Mozart-era formal attire was excessively fraternizing at a party. This version also contains red line art of Falco, guitar riff clips, and a long car scene driving away at the end, to a saxophone solo over the added refrain.
With "Rock Me Amadeus", Falco became the first German-speaking artist to be credited with a number-one single in all mainstream US pop singles charts: the Billboard Hot 100 and Cash Box Top 100 Singles. Prior to Falco, "99 Luftballons" by Nena got to number one on Cash Box, but peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100. The single hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 on 29 March 1986.
In the United Kingdom, where his "Der Kommissar" failed to make the charts, the song hit number one on 10 May 1986, becoming the first single by an Austrian act to achieve this distinction. "Vienna Calling" hit number 10 and three subsequent singles briefly charted.
In Canada, the song reached number one on 1 February 1986. (There, "Der Kommissar" had reached number 11 in January 1983, and "Vienna Calling" would hit number 8 in April 1986.)
Canadian/American '86 mix