Dschinghis Khan (song)

"Dschinghis Khan"
Song by Dschinghis Khan from the album Dschinghis Khan
Released Germany 1979 (1979)
Recorded 1979
Genre Disco
Label Jupiter Records
Writer Ralph Siegel, Bernd Meinunger
Producer Bernd Meinunger
Dschinghis Khan track listing
"Dschinghis Khan"
Israel, Israel
Germany Dschinghis Khan
Album cover - Dschinghis Khan - Dschinghis Khan.jpg
Eurovision Song Contest 1979 entry
Country Germany
Artist(s) Louis Hendrik Potgieter, Wolfgang Heichel, Henriette Heichel-Strobel, Edina Pop, Steve Bender, Leslie Mándoki
As Dschinghis Khan
Language German
Composer(s) Ralph Siegel
Lyricist(s) Bernd Meinunger
Conductor Norbert Daum
Finals performance
Final result 4th
Final points 86
Appearance chronology
◄ Feuer (1978)   
Theater (1980) ►

Dschinghis Khan (English translation: "Genghis Khan") was the West German entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1979, performed in German by Dschinghis Khan. Cover versions by a number of other artists were subsequently released as singles and album tracks.


Dschinghis Khan version

The song was performed ninth on the night (following Switzerland's Peter, Sue & Marc & Pfuri, Gorps & Kniri with "Trödler und Co" and preceding Israel's Gali Atari & Milk & Honey with "Hallelujah"). At the close of voting it had received 86 points, coming fourth in a field of nineteen.

The song was written and composed by the prolific duo of Ralph Siegel and Bernd Meinunger, and owes a considerable debt to disco music, specifically of the Boney M tradition. As the name suggests, it is in praise of the titular Mongol warrior, with verses extolling his military ("And about his enemies he only laughed/Because nobody could resist his strength") and sexual ("And each woman, that he liked/He took into his tent/They said, a woman who did not love him/Did not exist anywhere in the world/He fathered seven children in one night") prowess. Indeed, the entirety of his band are the subjects of this paean, being described as exceptional drinkers with a devil-may-care attitude to life ("And the devil gets us early enough").[1]

The performance is in a similarly flamboyant style, with one member of the band (Louis Hendrik Potgieter) dressed as a caricature of the warlord himself and capering about the stage, seducing the female members of the band and laughing as appropriate.[2]

The song makes many appearances in medleys and best-of collections of the Contest. As an example of the latter, it was featured prominently on the commemorative CDs produced to coincide with the "Congratulations" special in late 2005. Prior to the 2006 Contest, it was performed as part of a medley — one of only two non-winning songs to earn this honour.

It was succeeded as German representative at the 1980 Contest by Katja Ebstein with "Theater".

The song was also used at the end of Peelander-Z's live shows. The band would dance to it before going offstage. It has since been replaced in their routine. On a live DVD of one of their shows, the song was replaced with an original track, presumably for copyright reasons.

The song was played at Madison Square Garden for New York Rangers winger Petr Průcha during his tenure with the New York Rangers. The crowd would chant PRU-CHA in reference to the song.

The song was a show-stopping number in the middle of a 1979 German sex comedy film called Sunnyboy und Sugarbaby, a film which received a lot of late-night airplay in the early days of HBO under its English-language title, She's 19 and Ready. The film's characters go to a disco club, dancing to what is presented to be a live performance by the band, although the band and the actors are not seen together in the clips.[1]

Frederik version

Finnish singer Frederik covered the song as "Tsingis Khan" in his 1979 album Tsingis Khan. The Finnish lyrics were made by Juha Vainio. According to the website of Frederik, the composer of the original song, Ralph Siegel, considered the Frederik version to be even better than the original.[3] Siegel offered Frederik to cover also the song "Hadschi Halef Omar". It was covered as "Sheikki Ali Hassan" in Frederik's 1980 single.

Frederik version of the song is also used as ring entry theme by Russian boxer Denis ”Tsingis Khan” Shafikov.

Berryz Kobo version

Dschinghis Khan"

CD+DVD cover
Single by Berryz Kobo
B-side Darling I LOVE YOU (Berryz Kobo ver.) (ダーリン I LOVE YOU (Berryz工房 ver.)?)
Released Japan 12 March 2008
Format CD+DVD single, CD single, Single V
Recorded 2008
Genre J-pop
Label Piccolo Town
Writer(s) B. Meinunger, Iori Yamamoto
Producer Tsunku
Berryz Kobo singles chronology
(Tsukiatteru no ni Kataomoi)
(Dschinghis Khan)
行け 行け モンキーダンス
(Yuke Yuke Monkey Dance)
Alternate artwork
CD-only cover
Single V cover

Japanese idol unit Berryz Kobo has also released a cover of the song, albeit with toned-down lyrics, which do not make mention to the more explicit details pertaining to war, rape or the consumption of alcoholic beverages found in the 1979 original.

This single release marks the groups first cover song to be slotted as an a-side in a single. There are two versions to this single, a limited edition with a DVD (PKCP-5112~3) and a regular edition (PKCP-5114 – first pressing containing a photo card and a ticket for a raffle to attend an event promoting the single).[4]

The song was used as the main song to the group's musical, Dschinghis Khan ~Wa ga Tsurugi, Netsu Suna wo Some yo~ (ジンギスカン~わが剣、熱砂を染めよ~?), running through January 2008.[5]

It is also Berryz' highest selling single to date.

Track listings

CD track listing [4]

  1. Dschinghis Khan (ジンギスカン Jingisukan?)
  2. Darling I LOVE YOU (Berryz Kobo ver.) (ダーリン I LOVE YOU (Berryz工房 ver.) Dārin I LOVE YOU (Berry Kōbō ver.)?)
  3. ジンギスカン (Instrumental)
DVD with CD track listing [6]
  1. ジンギスカン (Dance Shot Ver.)

Single V track listing [7]

  1. ジンギスカン (Video Clip)
  2. ジンギスカン (Close-up Ver.)
  3. Making-of Video (メイキング映像 Meikingu Eizō?)

Other covers

  • Swedish dansband Vikingarna released a Swedish version of the song, "Djingis Khan", as a single in 1979. The B-side was "Annie's sång".
  • Another version of this song was performed by Thai band called Royal Sprite. The song was released in the 1980s in Thailand.[8]
  • Spanish singer Iván published a version under the title "Sin Amor".
  • The Korean dance/hip-hop group "Koyote" (코요태) have also made a cover of the song, "아자! 아자!", which appears on their Dance Best album, "vol. 9.5".
  • Another version of this song was performed by Die Apokalyptischen Reiter on the Dschinghis Khan EP this EP was bonus Allegro Barbaro Re-Release.


  1. ^ "Dschinghis Khan" lyrics, Diggiloo.net
  2. ^ "Dschinghis Khan" music video, Google Videos
  3. ^ And it has stayed as an ever green hit in Finland. Bio, Frederik official website(Finnish)
  4. ^ a b ジンギスカン, Berryz工房, Piccolotown
  5. ^ Berryz工房、モンゴル菓子を手土産に舞台応援!, ■その他の写真はこちら, Oricon.co.jp
  6. ^ ジンギスカン, Berryz工房, HMV Japan
  7. ^ [ジンギスカン], Berryz工房, Piccolotown
  8. ^ Browse by Label: ZUDRANGMA (THAILAND)

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