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Old 28th April 2011, 09:09 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Michael Learns To Rock marks 20 years of fame in Asia

Michael Learns To Rock marks 20 years of fame in Asia


In this photo taken Monday, April 25, 2011, Danish pop band Michael Learns To Rock members, from left, Mikkel Lentz, Jascha Richter, Kare Wanscher, pose before an interview in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. -- PHOTO: AP

KUALA LUMPUR (Malaysia) - THE Danish pop band Michael Learns To Rock has sold more than 10 million albums, performed in packed stadiums and spawned a string of soaring ballads that echo every night through countless karaoke bars.

But the trio's success belies a curious facet of its career: Two decades after releasing its debut CD, Michael Learns To Rock remains unknown in the United States and much of Europe but retains a legion of fans far away in Asia.

'When we started out by playing small gigs in small towns in Denmark, we had big dreams about world fame and fortune, but we feel privileged enough now to be embraced in Asia,' drummer Kare Wanscher said in an interview in Kuala Lumpur this week during a three-concert Malaysian tour.

Michael Learns To Rock initially comprised a quartet of two high school friends and their acquaintances who grew up loving pop music. They came up with their band's name on a whim, inspired by Michael Jackson and 1980s groups such as Johnny Hates Jazz and Frankie Goes To Hollywood.

The young men enjoyed a promising beginning by winning a 1988 talent competition in Denmark and writing English-language songs that secured them a recording contract in the United States.

Despite recording their eponymous first album in Los Angeles and embarking on a promotional push in New York in 1991, the CD flopped in America. Their lead single, The Actor, received airplay in Denmark, Sweden and Switzerland, but the foundation for their future was paved by an Asian record executive who made it a No. 1 smash in Indonesia.

Source: http://www.straitstimes.com/Breaking...ry_661297.html

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