For those of you asking, "When are you going to post another photo of some sexy bint..."
For now, make do with Natascha Bintz, a lovely beauty contest-winner from Letzebuerg. That's Luxembourg, to you.
She might not be the most famous person alive and well and living in Luxembourg...but who is?
When was the last time boxing's famous announcer Michael Buffer paused and said at a heavyweight championship fight…"And now…the National Anthem of Luxembourg…"
It's not a rhetorical question. Go ahead, leave a comment. All I know is that when that weasel David Haye and his warthog pal Dereck Chisora weren't sanctioned for a British championship fight (because of bad behavior…both being idiots), it was the little-known Luxembourg boxing federation that offered to "legitimize" the match. But I don't recall that the Luxembourg anthem was played.
I recall Jean-Pierre Coopman was "The Lion of Flanders," but…no, he was Belgian. And he lost rather badly to Muhammad Ali.
Many of you actually HAVE heard the National Anthem of Luxembourg, even though you never saw any sporting event. How? You saw the "Le Clerq" episode of M*A*S*H. In that one, a soldier from Luxembourg went missing, and when presumed dead, the national anthem was played in his honor. Colonel Blake was proud to honor "a Luxemburger."
Oh, the memories the National Anthem of Luxembourg has stirred!
What brought all this on? Well, back when record collecting was fun, I bought just about anything and everything. This included an import on the Collection Loisirs/Vogue label, of "Hymnes Nationau." Why not? How interesting to hear how 20 nations represented themselves via music. (America, we note, chose a British drinking song with fresh lyrics!)
I came across the album the other day. Well, no, I can't say I was that excited. Actually I was just looking through one of my weirder shelves of instrumentals and was surprised I hadn't gotten rid of "Hymnes Nationau" by now. Especially since Ms. Bintz' image is not superimposed on it. I was glad I hadn't, as it was an amusing diversion for a while. Besides, you never know when you're going to need to find a way to make a foreigner momentarily stop and stand still.
The tune is titled "Ons Heemecht" ("Our Homeland") and premiered rather late for a national anthem: 1864. The music is by Jean Antoine Zinnen and matched to a slightly earlier Luxembourgish poem by Michel Lentz. There are official German, English and French translations. The English translation begins…
"Where the Alzette flows through the meadows
The Sura bathes the rocks;
Where the Moselle, smiling and beautiful
We made a present of wine
This is our country for which we risk everything on earth..."
Ok, so it doesn't rhyme...if you really are respectful, you sing it in Luxembourgish. Feel free to download the lyrics from some website or other, and sing along to this instrumental version. It's conducted by Désiré Louis Corneille Dondeyne, who will soon be celebrating a birthday: July 21, 1921.
Let's Salute... LUXEMBOURG