What's that "Mama Barker" that Boney M. sang about.

What do Soviet listeners' favorites Boney M. sing about in their dance hit "Ma Baker"? Interesting facts about the song are in the article.

The song "Ma Baker" by Boney M.: history, facts, chart positions, clip

In the 1970s. of the last century one could observe the flowering of the disco genre in music. Bright melodies, dance rhythms, and, of course, eye-catching costumes, along with a mirror ball and colorful lighting effects, created a unique style disco music.

Boney M.
Boney M.

One of the brightest representatives who made disco famous all over the world, including those who became legends in the Soviet Union, were the artists of the Boney M.Boney M. was created by the German producer Frank Farian. Boney M. was created by casting a group of immigrants from Caribbean IslandsThe band was unusually popular, and the only band they had not conquered was the U.S.. The group was unusually popular, with the only band that didn't conquer them was the United States.

"Ma Baker" is one of the hits that made Boney M. famous in the Soviet Union.

In 1977 The eurodisco band is releasing a second studio album titled "Love for Sale" (translated from English as "Love for Sale"). At the time of its release Boney M. were already quite popular, topping the European charts and getting rave reviews from the fans.

Boney M. in 1978

But "Love for Sale" was a continuation of the disco group's phenomenal success, thanks in large part to an interesting composition "Ma Baker.". The story goes like this: the assistant to the band's mastermind, Frank Farian, was on vacation when he heard a popular Tunisian folk song "Sidi Mansour." and offered to transform it into a disco track.

Structurally "Ma Baker." The song, a traditional Boney M. song, has a dance beat with a bright keyboard part that adds a unique charm to the song. Also, the traditional Boney M. spoken verse coupled with an alternating backing female vocal allows the band to have a dialogue right on stage. At the same time the vocals and the music, clothed in disco shell, are the reference points for the song's worldwide popularity.

Incendiary "Ma Baker." Boney M. reached the number one position in many European charts, but the prestigious British charts were not won over by Boney M.. This was mainly because of the release of the more cult song "I Feel Love" by Donna Summer which reached the top position. But still second place on the UK Singles Chart was the best at the time achievement eurodisco bands.

The composition has also gained popularity and in the USSRIt was played at a small number of discotheques. And anyone who owned a record of the music Boney M.always considered cool. The band delighted Soviet fans by performing "Ma Baker" on Song Festival in SopotThe song's lines were borrowed by pop singer Lady Gaga for her hit song "Poker Face" in the 21st century. In the 21st century, the lines from this song were borrowed for her hit song "Poker Face" by pop singer Lady Gaga.

What does the incendiary disco song really sing about? 

"Ma Baker." - is one of the few Boney M. songs with a storyline. Its lyrical basis is the story Barker MamasThe Barker-Carpice Gang, which spread its influence in the United States in the early 1930s, was the head of the Barker-Carpice Gang. The criminals in this gang were also the sons of Barker and engaged in robbery and fraud under the protectorate of Ma Barker.

That Mama Barker
That Mama Barker

Ma Ma Ma Ma Ma - Ma Baker - she taught her four sons,
Ma Ma Ma Ma Ma - Ma Baker - How to Hold a Gun.
Ma ma ma ma ma - Ma Baker - she didn't know how to cry,
Ma ma ma ma ma - Ma Baker - but knew how to die," the song sings.

Mama Barker's connection to Boney M. is due to the producer of the band To Frank Farian. As legend has it, the band's founding father read about the story in a book about US crime. Impressed, Farian decided that the story should definitely appear in one of the songs of his project.

Frank Farian
Frank Farian

It is not uncommon for Boney M. to use real stories for their songs. Another famous hit of the German disco group "Rasputin"is a semi-biographical account of the life and death of Tsar Nicholas II, an advisor to the Russian Tsar. Grigory Rasputin and, of course, allows for a few historical liberties.

What about "The Pope"?

The song about "Mama" is from Boney M.'s second album. The year before, on the debut album, there was the song about "Daddy", known as "Daddy Cool".

Initially, the German band's single was not well received. However, after a spectacular dance performance at the show Musikladen the song got its due popularity. The hit was in the top 70 songs in the prestigious American chart Billboard Hot 100. It was a real breakthrough for the Eurodisco collective.

Natalia Vavilova in Moscow Doesn't Believe in Tears
Natalia Vavilova in Moscow Doesn't Believe in Tears

In the USSR, "Daddy Cool," or as it was called in the Soviet Union, "Varvara Frying Chickens," was also beloved by listeners. Interestingly, the song appeared in the cult movie "Moscow Doesn't Believe in Tears. In the episode, the fashionable girl Alexandra gives herself completely to a Western hit and listens intently with headphones, then gestures for her mother not to disturb her.


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