Tag Archives: French music

RIP Juliette Gréco (1927 – 2020)

Juliette Gréco was a French actress and singer. 

She first appeared on my radar in 2010 in the Gainsbourg movie Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life where she is played by Anna Mouglalis.

The scene from Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life in which Gainsbourg meets Gréco and plays for her “La Javanaise”.

Below the song “L’Accordéon” (1962) in which she plays her own black-clad body as an instrument. Very French and sensual.

While cycling to work, it dawned upon me that “L’Accordéon” reminded me of the Mary Poppins song “Chim Chim Cher-ee” (1964).

RIP J. J. Lionel (1947 – 2020)

La danse des canards” (1981)

J. J. Lionel was a Belgian musician whose song “La danse des canards” (1981) is one of the best-selling singles ever in France.

There is popular music and and then there is “danse des canards” popular, almost as popular as “Hava Nagila”.  

Both are songs everyone knows but no one can remember where it originates.

RIP Patrick Gibson (? – 2020)

Patrick Gibson (ne Francfort) was French musician. He was the drummer of the Gibson Brothers.

Cuba” (1978)

Their disco was not my type of disco … but hey … as I often say … you can’t argue with popular.

To his credit, Patrick seemed to have played the drums on the recently deceased Manu Dibango album Manu 76 (1976).

Patrick was in his sixties. Seeing recent photos of the trio seems to confirm that covid and obesity are bad company.

The Gibson Brothers were managed by Jean Kluger (born 1937) and Daniel Vangarde (born 1947). Vangarde’s real name is Bangalter and he is the father of Thomas.

RIP Nancy Holloway (1932 – 2019)

Nancy Holloway was an American singer and actress, a minor star who reached her zenith in the 1960s.

She covered American songs translated to French, sung with an American accent.

She had a bit part in pop art film Jeu de massacre (1967).

“T’en vas pas comme ça” (1963) an adaptation of “Don’t Make Me Over” released a year earlier.

Her song “Sand and Rain” (1974) is on the ‘Dusty Fingers volume 10’ and was sampled on “Your Revolution” (2000)

Sand and Rain” (1974)

RIP Henri Belolo (1936 – 2019)

Henri Belolo was a French music producer and songwriter active during the disco era.

He co-created The Ritchie Family, the Village People.

In the course of my research following his death, I found that Belolo was co-responsible for a horrifying version of “Aquarela do Brasil” by the Ritchie Family, and for the kitsch classics “Y.M.C.A.”, “In the Navy”, and “Go West” by the Village People.

However, it is Break Machine’s record “Street Dance” (1983) which I want to bring your attention here. A personal favorite, of however questionable taste it may appear to be.