maandag 31 augustus 2009

Another Gainsnord video!

More on Gainsnord here.
More on editor Pim here.

Sélection de Lundi: Sarah Nixey

Though Sarah Nixey is British, she’s a fille sourire to boot, levitating effortlessly between the realms of innocence and lasciviousness, the subversive and the sublime. With Black Box Recorder – assisted by Luke Haines of Auteurs fame and John Moore, ex-Jesus & Marychain –, she recorded three of the smartest, though heavily neglected pop CDs of the last decade; a new album was announced for 2009, and we're still waiting. French Rock’n’Roll from Recorder’s brilliant second record Facts of Life echoes the spirit of Jane & Serge, London-style, and features even a few lines en francais:

Black Box Recorder – French Rock’n’Roll

Solo, Sarah also did a quite trippy club cover of Francoise Hardy’s hit Le temps de l’amour, written by Hardy’s future husband Jacques Dutronc in 1962. Sarah video + Francoise’s original version:

Sarah Nixey – Le temps de l’amour (video)
Francoise Hardy – Le temps de l’amour
Sarah Nixey - Le temps de l'amour
Sarah Nixey - Ici avec toi ('a gauloised-up translation of the dreamily romantic When I’m Here With You')

Last not least, another of Sarah’s French connections from the compilation The Worst of Black Box Recorder: Her version of Terry Jacks’ weeper superhit Seasons in the Sun – cover of Jacques Brel’s classic chanson Le Moribond – reverberating an entirely different quality: the dizzy state when awakening from an already half-forgotten dream.

Jacques Brel – Le Moribond
Terry Jacks – Seasons in the Sun (German version)
Black Box Recorder – Seasons in the Sun

New Vanessa Paradis song

In November, a greatest-hits compilation by Vanessa Paradis will be released. Featuring her rendition of the Cole Porter-song I Love Paris, but also with a brandspanking new song, Il y a. That song will be released next week. It was written by Gaetan Roussel, best known as the lead singer of Louise Attaque.

Vanessa Paradis - Il y a

Gainsnord clip!

Post it, link it, view it, spread it, rewind! Thanks to Pim ( for editing!

zondag 30 augustus 2009

Filles in Holland

Very few filles ever play concerts in Pays-Bas, so when they do I have to let you know. Francoiz Breut plays the deep south and way up north: tonight, she's at Zomerparkfeest in Venlo, on Saturday September 5 she plays the (sold out) Into the Great Wide Open festival on Vlieland island. Maastricht has on Sunday September 6 a very versatile and very free Bruis festival. The mainstage will be rocked by the not very fragile, but still very good Mademoiselle K (pictured).

Mademoiselle K - Ca me vexe
Francoiz Breut & Da Silva - Décembre en été

Oh and by the way, this blog crossed the 1 million visits mark. See?

donderdag 27 augustus 2009

Au revoir Ellie

Be My Baby, Then He Kissed Me, I Can Hear Music, Da Doo Ron Ron, Baby, I Love You, Leader of the Pack, River Deep, Mountain High - Ellie Greenwich, co-writer of all those landmark no. 1 songs, surely knew how to craft irresistible pop tunes, mostly together with her husband John Barry, and producer legend Phil Spector. Apart from defining a girl pop era of her own - maybe there even would have been no Wall of Sound without her -, she also recorded two highly respectable solo albums in 1968 and 1973. Ellie Greenwich, who simply put magic in the air, died yesterday, August 26, in New York City.

Ellie Greenwich - Be My Baby

Here's the Gallic version of Leader of the Pack by Frank Alamo, who became a photographer after a relatively short-lived pop idol career in the mid-60s. Plus Be My Baby by Vanessa P., high libido style, not a Greenwich cover, as I'm told in the comments - which is definitely true, though I still can hear Ellie's echo.

Frank Alamo - Le chef de la bande
Vanessa Paradis - Be my Baby

Rare track bonus, provided by blogger colleague Roy Black: Yukari Ito's seldom-heard version of Be My Baby, early j-pop with a moonlight serenading Glenn Miller interlude.

Yukari Ito - Be My Baby

When Kahimi Got Married

Due to a well-informed FS reader (see comments here), we now know that Japanese uber-poupée Kahimi Karie married tap-dancer Kazunori Kumagai two months ago. Congratulations, Kahimi! For more info, also see the web journal of Kahimi collaborator Momus, and don't forget to check out the funny and quite outspoken discussion at the bottom of the page.

Kahimi Karie - Ma langue au chat

Sonoko - Wedding with God (à Nijinski)

maandag 24 augustus 2009

Guesch Patti

Guess who's back? Patricia Porasse, aka Guesch Patti, that's who. Best know for Etienne and her exuberant stage shows and clips, her sales went down with the release of every album after the fabulous debut. Which isn't to say that those album, or her career for that matter, weren't interesting enough. She appeared in a Claude Lelouch movie, had Peter Greenaway use her songs and worked as a dancer (and a jury member on dancing shows on tv) and stage actor. Bilingue is the new single, an album is coming up too. Her voice has softened, which is nice. And so is the song.

Guesch Patti - Bilingue

Sélection de Lundi: Kahimi Karie

Some people might have lost track of her, but you - well, I, see here - can't praise Kahimi Karie highly enough. Serge wasn't around anymore to take advantage of her, so Cornelius/ Keigo Oyamada and Nick Currie/ Momus took over to produce the most sincere, deceptive, tender, over-the-top and still unsurpassed bébé pop, an amalgam of Birkin-esque whispers, Claudine style, Vanessa tongue-play, and a fairy-tale fetish innocence that's gone in a split second - grab it while you're there.

Kahimi Karie - Dis-Moi Quelque Chose Avant De Dormir

vrijdag 21 augustus 2009

Covers Deluxe: Philippe Leroy

Sorry, this ain’t the actor Philippe Leroy, famous for his roles in Le Trou or Milano Calibro 9. According to this YouTube video, we can gather that French singer Philippe Leroy bleached his mane somewhere along the way and transformed into an artist with a, well, quite particular clothing style and a haircut that tells stories from a trailer park only the boldest coiffeurs would dare to enter. Before Philippe went there, he looked (see above) pretty much like the guy who stole my sister's bra at the youth hostel in Antibes as a souvenir, and recorded the Mediterranean version of The Rubettes’ smash hit Tonight. That was in 1974. Some French people actually had sex while listening to it.

Philippe Leroy – Ce soir

The Rubettes original, also from the same year, remains a charming bubblegum-meets-glam gem. And while some folks might have snickered at their caps then: Twenty-five years later, British intellectuals The Auteurs paid tribute to The Rubettes, with one of the finest pop songs of the 90s.

Rubettes – Tonight
Auteurs – The Rubettes

donderdag 20 augustus 2009


If you're a female singer and list Ricky Lee Jones, Joni Mitchell and Norah Jones as influences or references, I'm won over already. Elsa Kopf (aka Za) is a friend of Pierre Peppermoon (who helped with the artwork for Za's debut-cd), also a nice reference. Her gentle, very Joni-and-Ricky'ish songs make you not want to get up from your couch, but lay down some more, reaching for the remotecontrol to play those innocent and easy sounding songs over and over. Most songs on Acoustic Joy are in English, but she finishes with two French ditties. Like them best, of course.

Za - Mai en moi
Za - Larmes de caramel

Laetitia Casta sings

This scene from the Gainsbourg movie (called Vie Héroique, or Je t'aime... moi non plus depending on your territory) you see Laetitia Casta in the Brigitte Bardot role. Doing what both BB and LC did/do best: look very sexy. I wonder if Laetitia will sing in the movie as well. She appeared in a Chris Isaak-video, but only recently I found out that she duetted with Raphael on the Piaf-tribute Hymne a la Môme (2003). Also on that tribute are Axelle Red, Isabelle Boulay and Benjamin Biolay.

Raphael & Laetitia Casta - La Foule
Benjamin Biolay - Plus Bleu Que Tes Yeux

Gainsbourg the movie

World of Kane has all the info, and lots and lots of great stills from the movie.


Beautiful song, and beautiful video. The band is called Monogrenade, they're from Montreal and this is their first single.(Via)

Monogrenade - Ce Soir

woensdag 19 augustus 2009

French Funk Flashers

32 degrees in the shade, just the right temperatures for some equally hot stuff inbetween: the timeless funky-fresh sounds of Jean-Claude Pelletier from his 1974 ultra-rare concept album Streaking!, chock-full of humid grooves, wah-wah guitars, and sharpest horns. For some dubious reason, Streaking Land reminds me of an episode from The Streets of San Francisco when Detective Mike Stone busts a marihuana dealer, takes the dope from his pocket, and says: „Hey, you wanna smoke this shit alone?"

Jean-Claude Pelletier – Streaking Land
Jean-Claude Pelletier – Special Streaking

Closely related in spirit: Passage à Tabacco from Serge’s soundtrack for the soft porn flick Madame Claude, including one of the mangiest guitars ever heard.

Serge Gainsbourg – Passage à Tabacco

Jean and Jeanne

Dutch and Belgian artists revisit Gainsbourg, accordeoniste Jean Corti revisits his days with Jacques Brel, with a little help from young (and not so young) French singers. Like Olivia Ruiz, Thomas Fersen and Jeanne Cherhal. Corti, who turns or has turned 80 this year, (co-)wrote Brel-songs like Madeleine, Les Bourgeois and the anti-bullfight song Les Toros. He worked with Ruiz before, revisiting Serge's La Javanaise in a sweet and very Parisian way. His album is released on Les Tetes Raides own record label. See Jean and Jeanne do Les Toros here.

Jean Corti & Jeanne Cherhal - Les Toros
Jacques Brel - Les Toros

Claire Denamur in Rexona commercial (and new video!)

The gorgeous, the talented, the slightly Dutch and this years hottest discovery Claire Denamur released a new single, In the mood for l'amour. As the title suggests, it's sung in English and French. The song is also used in a deodorant commercial. Above is an acoustic live version. See the official video here (can't embed that one, alas), and see the commercial here.

Claire Denamur - In the mood for l'amour

maandag 17 augustus 2009

Roni has a right to party

You can't blame a beautiful ex-fashion designer for trying, can you now? Roni Brunn and her band From made a French cover of the Beastie Boys classic Fight for your Right. Roni raps in (heavily accented) French. The rock-meets-rap-music from the original is replaced by 'a fuzzy New Order'. Why? 'Regardless of judgment, polarizing risk-taking should be the regular habit of new bands', Roni states. And why in French? 'I'm not an authority on your language, just a fan!' Again, you cannot blame her for trying. It's Roni's right to party. You can cry, if you want to.

From - Fight for your right (French version)

zondag 16 augustus 2009

Cahiers du cinéma #2: Caterina Valente

Italian brunette Caterina Valente isn’t especially famous for her movies, though she appeared in a good dozen, her first one being the prostitution melodrama Party Girls for Sale a.k.a. They Were So Young (And So in Danger!) – released in 1954, the same year she hit it grand with her German version of Cole Porter’s I Love Paris, re-titled Ganz Paris träumt von der Liebe (The Whole of Paris Dreams of Love) and selling more than half a million copies.
Most of Valente’s hits came from the German Schlager alley, a back street of pop most people rightly fear to tread. However, Bonjour Kathrin from the same-titled 1956 Valente movie is a charming example of how to fuse a German language song with French flair. No wonder: Actually La Signora had started out à Paris, and in the late 50s came back with some recordings in French, among them the irresistible Un p’tit Béguine – supremely seductive stuff, effortlessly on a par with the divine Connie Francis who also took her turn at Gallic sentiments in 1965.

Caterina Valente – Bonjour Kathrin
Caterina Valente - Un p'tit Béguine

Connie Francis - La vie en rose

Merci à the indispensable Roy Black for providing the Béguine. Film extra speziale: Roy Budd’s groovefest Plaything from 1971’s British hardboiler Get Carter, easily among the coolest soundtracks of them all. A year later, he married Valente. Indeed. What a match.

Roy Budd - Plaything

donderdag 13 augustus 2009

Fouxi remixed

The weekend will be hot hot hot in Amsterdam, soI'm sure we will play the new Fouxi-single a lot here at FS HQ. Le Hawaii Interieur was the best song on Fouxi's elegant debut-album, now it got a candy coloured remix by Millenia Nova. These Munich based producers worked with everyone from A-Ha to Lamb, and they love (as you can hear in their remix) Claudine Longet and Henry Mancini.

Fouxi - Le Hawaii Interieur (Millenia Nova remix)

woensdag 12 augustus 2009

Les Dupons

Girls singing Gainsbourg-covers with a ukelele - very much in favour of that! First there was Mareva Galanter, now there's the mysterious Les Dupons. There's very few info on who this is. You know more? Share!

Les Dupons - Chez les yeye's

This, this and this are great versions of the same song. See original version here.

dinsdag 11 augustus 2009

Madd, Claude and Gainsnord

Don't worry, just because there are a few posts about men on this blog doesn't mean we've changed directions. We stay focussed on the filles, but because there's no new stuff we turn to the guys for a while. They too make great records, you know. Take Rotterdam quartet The Madd, whose second album Are Pretty Quick! is released next week. On their debut they did a great French song, this time they've added a great great great Claude François cover. See the original video here. UPDATE: Style-meister Minimatic told me to check out this fantastic video, an Italian version by Rocky Roberts!

I did ask The Madd to contribute to Gainsnord (Serge's songs revisited by bands from the Lowlands) but alas, they were tangled up in the recordings of their own album. Heard they really wanted to contribute. The official Gainsnord site is online, you can hear 2 minutes of every song. Love to know what you think! Release 18/9.

The madd - Ce soir je vais boire
Claude François - Ce soir je vais boire
Rocky Roberts - Stasera mi butto (NEW: uploaded the old version, not that horrible remix, sorry 'bout that!)

maandag 10 augustus 2009

Cahiers du cinéma #1: Michel Piccoli

In the 70s, everything in the movies was different, and Michel Piccoli was right at the centre of it all, starring in Faraldo’s Themroc, Ferreri’s Grande Bouffe, or Girod’s Trio Infernal. Inbetween appalling La Bourgeoisie, Piccoli found the time to record his only 7“ on the Adèle label in 1976. On the A-side, L’art d’aimer, he’s transforming some lines from Ovid’s classic seducing field manual Ars Amatoria/ The Art of Love, probably written in the year 1 A.D., into suprême fromage francais, while the B-side takes disco funk from ... well, à derrière, and surely in an unrivaled way, though probably not to everyone’s liking.
The mastermind behind it was composer and arranger Bernard Gérard, also responsible for the delirious shake-shakes in Georges Lautner’s underrated Ne nous fachons pas as well as for the whacked-out adaptation of Gee-l-o-r-i-a – featuring Graeme Allwright, the only guy from Nouvelle-Zélande ever to make the famous Olympia music hall at the Boulevard de Capucine à Paris. Van Morrison didn't stand a friggin' chance.

Michel Piccoli – L’art d’aimer
Michel Piccoli – Alors ... c’est oui?

Bernard Gérard – Rosbif Attack
Bernard Gérard/ Graeme Allwright – Akou

Special extra: Romy Schneider, for many the ultimate fille fragile, en duet with Michel in 1970, and a fine, piano loop driven hommage à Romy by Geneve-based trio Sinner DC from their 2005 album Arkle Parkle Avenue, both beautiful, serious affairs.

Romy Schneider/ Michel Piccoli – La Chanson d'Hélène
Sinner DC – Romy Schneider

zondag 9 augustus 2009

Brisa Roché

Leave it to SOM to dig up great songs from lesser known compilations. Brisa Roché debuted in 2002, Blue Note revamped that debut in 2005. Love her dew-eyed look, and her slightly off-key singing. She sang in French on that cd, but kept it all English on follow-up Takes. Shame. On OpenMag & Factory compilation (released last year, a team-up between a magazine and a festival) she sings a gorgeous duet with an unidentified male filmdirector Samuel Benchetrit. Also from last year is another duet, with producers Bost & Bim. Estelle's American Boy gets a red-gold-and-green treatment. Nice for the current temperatures.

Brisa Roché & Samuel Benchetrit - B&B
Bost & Bim feat. Brisa Roché - Jamaican boy

vrijdag 7 augustus 2009

Foxy Summer, French Style

The photo on the right shows a happy man – Francis Lai, composer of the immortal bande original du film for Un homme et une femme, as well Oscar winner for his Love Story soundtrack. Five years later, at the height of the Disco days, Lai put the milk jug away for a few hours and took his coffee black – for the high-class 1976 Jean-Paul Belmondo feature Le corps de mon ennemi, doing his own, equally foxy Superfly groove, gallic style.
A year later, Serge also went funky with his soundtrack for Just Jaeckin’s softcore callgirl skin flick Madame Claude, amalgamating stuffy guitar licks and highly addictive slap-bass beats into some of the tightest badassss shit you might have ever heard.
Erm, bonus: Stéphanie’s 1985 Funky Baby, essential listening for all bébés under ten years; otherwise please enter at your own risk. Plus: A tender pierced-tongue-play version of Un homme et une femme by lovely German redhead Enie van de Meiklokjes – and now let's talk magic, we're sixteen again.

Francis Lai – Number One
Francis Lai – Jack pot
Serge Gainsbourg – Ketchup in the Night
Serge Gainsbourg – Discophotéque

Stéphanie – Funky Baby
Enie – Daba Daba Dab

donderdag 6 augustus 2009

Lost Fingers

Canadian trio The Lost Fingers named themselves after Django Reinhardt (who lost two fingers in a fire), and play his trademark manouche-style, or gypsy-jazz. But instead of composing their own songs, they do covers. Of 80s classics, like Pump Up the Jam. Or, on their new album, French(-ish) popgold like Lady Marmelade and the Je t'aime... moi non plus of the punk generation, Ça plane pour moi. It's an acquired taste (along the lines of Global Kryner, Hayseed Dixie and La Pompe Moderne), but with the right amount of alcohol and the right company, it's fun. Plus: gypsy-style jazz is quite hard to play.

The Lost Fingers - Ça Plane Pour Moi (original version here)
The Lost Fingers feat. Martine St Clair - On Va S'Aimer (original version here)

woensdag 5 augustus 2009

Children of Gainsbourg

Just got word from the rep of Gainsbourg's heirs, that they are very pleased with the upcoming tribute Gainsnord (Serge's songs revisited by bands from the Lowlands)! Whoo! This means that we can release the album (on cd, and digitally) outside of Holland. Remember: presentation on Sept 18 @ Amsterdam Paradiso, featuring Janne Schra, Marc Pinillo, West Hell 5, Flora Dolores, VJ's Scopitones, DJ Natashka and a whole lot more.
On the right, you can see a first draft of the cd-cover. Art by Hanco Kolk, design by Designdevil Martin Draax.

maandag 3 augustus 2009

Les Provocateurs

I read about Les Provocateurs on Charlie's blog. Then of course I send our special Brazilian correspondant, Luciane, to the scene. Here's her report:

What happens when you put together a leftie extraordinaire, lovely Brazilian filles and Serge Gainsbourg as inspiration? One heck of a gig with provocation enough to make you leave the premises happy and in the mood. They're not kidding when they call themselves Les Provocateurs.
Edgard Scandurra, one of Brazil's greatest guitar players, is the man behind this ensemble. Well known from his '80s rock band, he's gone solo and is quite busy. French music is more than just one of his musical projects, it's a passion.
You can tell how much of a Gainsbourg fan he really is by the name of his restaurant: Le Petit Trou . That's where Les Provocateurs began, with a tribute to Gainsbourg's 80th birthday. Scandurra teamed up with Bárbara Eugênia, also from 3 na Massa, Juliana R., a young and new voice in the urban folk scene of São Paulo, and Scandurra's wife Andréa Merkel. Their renditions of our favorite Serge tunes are dreamy, playful and teasing. Scandurra's inverted guitar poetry is the perfect match to female vocals that go from soft to bold when they dive into the Gainsbourg universe. For the past month, special guests joined Les Provocateurs on stage, creating a different atmosphere every night. I was surprised to see how much Gainsbourg was an influence to Brazilian artists whose music I'd never put together with his. Besides Gainsbourg, Les Provocateurs also flirt with France Gall,Françoise Hardy, Anna Karina, Jacques Dutronc and Michel Polnareff.
Great repertoire? You bet. Word has it that these provocations might go from the stage to the studio. What a tease!

Le premier bonheur du jour (feat. Juliana R., Françoise Hardy cover)

Listen to more songs here.

And because we want more Serge, two videos from the anniversary
tribute at Le Petit Trou. Gainsbarre in the background, intimiste,
perfect. :)
Chez les ye-ye (feat. Bárbara Eugênia)
Harley Davidson (feat. Bárbara Eugênia)

zondag 2 augustus 2009

Chansons du Soleil #10

Best medicine against a grey and rainy day like today: a hot 'n sensual track by Vanessa Contenay-Quinones. The blonde and high heeled Parisian beauty recorded a very Gainsbourg-esque track, called Quand Tu Me Dis. With this one she brings sensuality in music to the next level. Little sighs of excitement follows the grotesque intro of this song with a high summer feeling. Must be her raising in the Canary Islands with a Peruvian mother that it has this sort of mediterranean laid-backness and yet sleezy and hot feeling at the same time.
You also might know Vanessa as the leadsinger of Vanessa & The O's, with whom she already recorded an EP and full length album. The only thing missing right now is the sun, but Vanessa did all she could.

Vanessa Contenay-Quinones - Quand Tu Me Dis