Just because my country has voted to BRexit Europe doesn't make me any the less the polyglot Francophile. (Pretentious? Moi?) So, given a paucity of songs pouring out this, that and and the other, or like this, that or the other, what am I to do? My first choice has had several appearances here, so it has to be the glory that is Plastic Bertrand.
Roger Allen Francois Jared, a member of that scatologically slim brotherhood, Famous Belgians, isn't really all that famous, even arguably in Brussels. But he did have an international hit single in 1977, a number 8 in the UK, and, highly convincingly for a foreign language song, number 57 in the U.S. Billboard chart. And while it only peaked at 11 in his homeland, of course the french and the swiss granted it toppermost off the poppermost, with number 1s.
It wasn't even his song, it having been originally written and performed by his record producer, Lou Deprijck, always denied by Jared until a 2010 court case eventually confirmed the truth. In fact, he hadn't sung any of the songs on his first 4 albums. Ooops. I think this truth spoils the story, if I am honest, but thankfully there has yet to be a case questioning the validity of one Elton Motello, who sang a loosely "translated" english version.
Thankfully leaving that behind, I thought it entirely essential to reveal another genuinely francophone version, courtesy the excellent Nouvelle Vague. From their 3rd album, this is what the band had to say about it. (O, so it wasn't sung by a french person either......)
Finally, and unnecessarily, above is a version I had never been aware of, NYC's finest, Sonic Youth, covering it. I wondered why too.
Find the original here
(And I bet you are still reeling that Audrey Hepburn was belgian?)