Janette Anne Dimech (10 October 1951 in London), who performs under the name Jeanette, is an English-born Spanish singer who has resided in Spain since the age of 12, and sings primarily in Spanish. She has also recorded songs in several different languages. Besides Spanish, they include English (her native language), French, Portuguese, German and Japanese. Jeanette has completed seven albums with great success with millions of sales worldwide. Besides appearances and duets with stars such as Julio Iglesias, José Luis Perales, Mocedades, Sacha Distel, Raphael, and Formula V, she also received other offers from stars such as Camilo Sesto and Michael Jackson who wanted to work with her, but Jeanette felt that there was a lack of musical affinity between herself and them.
Dimech is the daughter of a Belgian-Congolese father of Maltese descent and a Spanish mother originally from the Canary Islands. Because of her grandparents' import-export business, she was born in London and grew up in Chicago and La Habra, California. After her parents' separation when she was 12, she moved to Barcelona with her mother and younger brother and sister. Having grown up in the United States, she spoke only English when she first moved to Spain. She was placed in an American school at first, but later befriended some local Spanish children who helped teach her Spanish.
After her band, Pic-Nic, split up at the end of the 1960s, Jeanette moved to Vienna with her husband, Hungarian football player Laszlo Kristof, and lived quietly as a homemaker and the mother of their only child, Blythe.
During the 1960s Jeanette learned to play guitar and began to write her own songs. She styled her music after American folk music, and her idols included Bob Dylan, Donovan, and the Byrds. Later she joined the student band Pic-Nic as a singer, and in 1967 they had a measure of success with a folk version of the Spanish children's song "Cállate niña" (in which Jeanette had co-written). Other notable songs of theirs included "Amanecer" and "No digas nada". However, constant disagreements among members, such as whether or not to record English versions of their songs, ended with the dissolution of the group.
After the dissolution of Pic-Nic, Jeanette resumed her course, but overnight received a call from her former record label Hispavox, the same label she was on during her tenure with Pic-Nic. This time the label said that they had a project for a singer and Jeanette must be it. But Hispavox moved heaven and earth to convince Jeanette to come back to Spain and to the music. Jeanette settled in Barcelona in 1971 to start her solo career. The singer thought it was to revive the folk spirit of Pic-Nic, but the label wanted to make a new figure of the ballad. At the start of the 1970s, she began her solo career with her hit first single, "Soy Rebelde" ("I am a rebel"). On the single, the record label misspelt her name as "Jeanette" (her correct spelling is Janette without the first "e".) Ever since then, her stage name has been spelt with the additional "e". The single first enjoyed success in Spanish-speaking countries and later broadened its influence with French ("L'inconnu qui m'aimera"), Japanese ("あまのじゃく") and English versions. This song and others penned by Manuel Alejandro, such as "Estoy triste" and "Oye mamá, oye papá" ("Listen mama, listen papa"), established her as an artist in Spain. Palabras, promesas ("Words, promises") was written by José Luis Perales was released in 1973. In this LP were released all the singles and recorded from 1971 to 1973.
Porque te vas
Her greatest success, "Porque te vas" (Because you are leaving), written by José Luis Perales, became an international hit when the song was used in Carlos Saura's 1976 film Cría Cuervos (Raise Ravens). In Austria it reached number 13, in Switzerland number 4, and in Germany it reached number 1. On 12 February 1977, Jeanette sang the song in the popular German program Musikladen (programme 31).
Todo es nuevo
Jeanette worked with famous French composer André Popp for the production of her album Todo es nuevo (Everything is new) in 1977. There were two versions: Spanish and French. The album received a lukewarm reception, but the song ¿Por qué voy a cambiar? (Why should I change?) (Tzeinerlin' in French) also appeared in the German programme Musikladen (Musikladen, programme 35, 8 October 1977).
Corazón de poeta
In 1981 she recorded her best-selling album to date, Corazón de Poeta, which was composed, arranged and conducted by Manuel Alejandro, and gave her three hit singles: "Corazón de poeta" (literally "Heart of a poet" but translated as "A heart so warm and so tender"), "Frente a Frente" (literally "Face to face" but translated as "Sorrow") and "El muchacho de los ojos tristes" ("The man with the sad eyes"). Especially the vintage album sales world-wide millions, triumphing across the line in several Latin American countries. In Spain it was the number-one album for a week; of the singles, "Frente a frente" reached #4 for 20 weeks and "Corazón de poeta" reached #13 for 10 weeks.
In the next several years she released the albums Reluz (1983), Ojos en el Sol (1984), and Loca por la Música (1989), along with a string of singles. Her sales then declined, though she herself remained popular and her back catalogue was re-packaged into a continual stream of greatest-hits collections.
- 1966: Daurat Oest/Ho se/Clara Lluna/Amor Perdut
- 1967: Cállate, niña/Negra estrella
- 1968: Amanecer/No digas nada
- 1968: Me olvidarás/Él es distinto a ti
- 1968: Hush, Little Baby/Blamin's Not Hard To Do/You Heard My Voice
- 1971: Soy rebelde/elo apá, oye mamá
- 1972: Estoy triste/No digas nada
- 1973: Palabras, promesas/Debajo del platanero
- 1974: Porque te vas/Seguiré amando
- 1975: Hoy nos hemos dicho adiós/El mundo con amor
- 1977: Todo es nuevo/Pequeña preciosa
- 1978: No digas buenas noches/Heaven, please, don't let it rain tonight
- 1978: Voy a tener un niño/De mujer a mujer
- 1981: Frente a frente/Cuando estoy con él
- 1981: Corazón de poeta/Comiénzame a vivir
- 1981: Sorrow/A Heart so warm and so tender
- 1982: El muchacho de los ojos tristes/Toda la noche oliendo a ti"
- 1983: Reluz/Más de cien sentidos
- 1983: Con qué derecho/No me fio más
- 1984: Amiga mía/Baila conmigo
- 1984: Ojos en el sol/Buenas noches
- 1989: China/Por nada del mundo
- 1989: Loca por la música/Sinceridad
- 1968: Pic-Nic
- 1969: Cállate niña (International Reissue)
- 1973: Palabras, promesas
- 1976: Porque te vas
- 1977: Todo es nuevo
- 1981: Corazón de poeta
- 1983: Reluz
- 1984: Ojos en el sol
- 1988: Loca por la música
- 1996: Sigo rebelde
- 1995: Sus Mas Lindas Canciones
- 1998: Coleccion Original
- 2002: Soy Rebelde
- 2003: 15 Canciones Favoritas
- 2004: 15 De Coleccion
- 2005: 20 Exitos Originales
- 2008: Lo Esencial
- 2015: De Cerca: 20 Canciones Esenciales