Coeur de Pirate

Coeur de Pirate, aka Beatrice Martin, covers Air! We @ FillesSourires HQ we worship the ground she walks on ever since we fell really hard for her magnificent debut. For radio station NRJ CdP recorded an intimate session (with just a piano), featuring stripped songs from that debut and a remarkable cover of Air’s Playground Love, a song they recorded (with Phoenix-singer  Thomas Mars) for the Virgin Suicide soundtrack. See an interview with CdP about the session here, see a video of Ensemble here. Alas, the session is only available via iTunes France (soooo stupid), but thanks to J-P, here’s that Air-cover.

Coeur de Pirate – Playground Love

Allez la France

If you’re a football fan (no, it’s not soccer, it’s football), you probably witnessed the demise of the French national team. La fille du voison (the neighbour’s daughter) recorded several parodies, based on Stromae’s summer smash Alors on dance. The latest, Alors on perd (translates something like okay, so we lost) you can see above. This is the first one. This is Stromae’s original.

IN OTHER NEWS, I recorded several podcasts for Dutch internet-only station KX Radio. My show’s called Ongehoord Goed (Unheard Brilliance) and focusses on non-English pop- and rocksongs, from France, Spain, Brazil, Cambodia, Japan, Finland, etc. You can download the first two from here, and here. Yes, it is presented in Dutch, but the music’s universal, right? More to follow!

Summer Songs (1)

Summer started last week, so now it’s time to divide the gold from the lead, the real shiners from the plastic. Of course, summer is not over yet and there maybe songs that start shining over the next weeks. But here’s a cool trio you can’t go wrong with:

Babet – Je pense a nous. Dionysos-member Babet Maistre (or Babou Calou, as she’s calling her self on Facebook) will release a second album after summer, but this great track warms my face and other bodyparts in a very pleasant way already.

Babet – Je pense a nous

ZAZ – Je veux. From Bordeaux, but with exotic roots, ZAZ has the smile in her voice that fits her exotic, diverse music really well.

ZAZ – Je veux

And finally, the second EP of our beloved La Fiancee is out. To be honest, I’m less impressed than with her debut but this song makes me want to lie down under a shady tree and play it over and over and over and over again.

La Fiancee – On avait jure


Remember when you first heard Coeur de Pirate, maybe on this blog? Like me, you were probably blown away. That voice, that song, those tattoos. Ever since you, like me, tried to relive that experience. Find another fragile, French-singing girl with superbe songs to refresh you in places you’d never imagine could be refresh. Montreal-based singer Melanie Scala, aka Porcelaine, has the ability. Her 5 track EP is not as brilliant as CdP’s album, some songs need more character, but boyohboy what a gorgeous track is Mirage. Reminds me of Elsa (this one), of a young Vanessa Paradis, love the bassline and the fx. Melanie says she’s inspired by Air, Rufus Wainwright and Charlotte Gainsbourg – I could swear it’s Charlotte looking desperately from the album-cover. She worked with guys who also played with Stephanie Lapointe and Ariane Moffatt – always a good sign. Looking forward to a full album.

Porcelaine – Mirage

Vanessa Paradis

Charlotte Gainsbourg was in the Cirque Royal last Saturday, tomorrow Vanessa Paradis plays an acoustic set there.  This is part of an extensive tour that will end in the Chateau de Versailles, where the show will be recorded. Thanks to SOM, here’s raw footage from that tour, Vanessa doing Françoise Hardy’s Le temps de l’amour.

Vanessa Paradis – Le temps de l’amour

Charlotte Gainsbourg in Bruxelles

Yes, Charlotte Gainsbourg did Serge’s Couleur café last Saturday in the Royal Circus of Bruxelles. And L’hôtel particulier. And some hard rocking versions of her own songs (well, songs that were written especially for her), with added psychedelic fx. Those expecting the gentle, almost velvet atmosphere of Charlotte’s 5.55 album probably were disappointed – songs like Songs that We Sing and Jamais were grittier. Jamais even got funkier, with the emphasis on the bassline. I read some reviews of her show in Le Cigale Paris (here), the concert in Bruxelles was exactly the same. It was fierce, sometimes Charlotte could not be heard over the music – but then we knew she has no Aretha Franklin-pipes. I liked it a lot, the band was great (‘cept for the drummer they all played various instruments), the psychedelic fx worked (esp. in Le chat du café des artistes) and the Serge-cover were a treat. She also did a gorgeous Dylan-reprise (see video here). I’d love to see and hear her in a more intimate setting, with lots of strings and a plushier atmosphere. But those leather pants sure fit her nicely.

Keren Ann

Keren Ann singing in Ivrit, can’t remember if I ever posted her cover of Rechov Ha’nashamot Ha’tehorot (by Israeli band Pure Souls, the songtitle translates At the Pure Soul Street), but it’s excellent. It sounds like it was used in a Hebrew version of Bilitis, with it’s soft-focus fx. It was recorded for a compilation to celebrate 60 years of Israel. No wonder she was asked, KA was born near Haifa, and moved to Paris when she was 11 (she also retains Dutch citizenship). Keren Ann Zeidel recently recorded a duet with Israeli singer Shlomi Shaban for Amnesty International. A special version of By the Cathedral, originally on the Not Going Anywhere-cd. The Spanish branch set up the Peace campaign, for ” aimed at preventing cases of Human Rights abuses around the world”. For a small donation (starting from 5 US dollars) you can download 180 (!) exclusive songs from bands from all over the world, including FS-faves like Vive la Fête and Amélie-les-Crayons, but also Black Strobe, a balladeer, Marike Jager, Ra Ra Riot, Port O’Brien, Malajube, Buck65 and many, many more.  Recommended!

Keren Ann – Rechov Ha’nashamot Ha’tehorot
Pure Souls – Rechov Ha’nashamot Ha’tehorot
Keren Ann & Shlomi Shaban – By the Cathedral


Two great looking gals singing petites chansons méchantes, an apt description of Sylvie Hoarau and Aurelie Maggiori, aka Brigitte. Posted about ‘m before (in 2008 and 2009), recently their first EP dropped featuring an NTM cover, the funky La vengeance d’un louve (see video here) and my fave, Battez-vous. Love the bassline in this track. As you may have read in earlier posts, the Brigittes are experienced, they recorded alone (Aurelie, as Mayane) and with a band (Sylvie, with Vendetta). Looking forward to a full album.
Brigitte – Battez-vous


‘Incroyable!, cried Marc Collin on his Facebook when he clicked on the link to the video above. Someone had just shown him this, which triggered me to introduce him to Hansje (Ravesteijn). I posted about her earlier (here), but now that the video has been uploaded on YT, I feel it’s time for a repost. The former model, dancer, Debbie Harry-lookalike contest winner and singer made a couple of singles in the late seventies and early 80s. Automobile and the Plastic Bertrand-ripoff Silex Pistols Piew Piew made her a star in Germany.  The video was shot for the music show Musikladen. Another claim to fame was her show in 1982 for Dutch military in the Lebanon. When Hansje revealed a tiny leopard skin dress under her soldier’s uniform, the local Muslim militia was offended, and started shooting.  Several Dutchbatters were injured. This Dutch article tells the whole story. When I first posted about Hansje, Belgian breakcore-heroes Mascotte were so excited by the track that they made a remix. Now, with the video, Collin’s enthusiasm and more people responding quite good, who knows what might happen next…
UPDATE: Thanks to Swie Tio, now I know that Silex Pistols is actually a cover of Belgian punkband Too Much. The whole song is in French. More details (and download) here.

Hansje – Silex Pistols Piew Piew
Hansje – Automobile (video!)
Hansje – Tu es belle
Hansje – Silex Pistols Piew Piew (Mascotte RNR Breakcore remix)


A post with Gainsbourg-related stuff, covers and soundtrack-music. The other day I tried to watch the 1968 movie Slogan, the first film starring both Jane and Serge. Without subtitles it was impossible to follow, then again, the storyline isn’t that difficult and it seems that the director tried harder to make the film look good than to tell a good story. I haven’t seen Mister Freedom (from 1969), featuring Serge, Philippe Noiret and Donald Pleasance. IMDB says: “Mr. Freedom, a pro-America superhero who fights for God and country by beating, robbing, raping and killing anyone who looks like they might disagree with him. When he hears that France is in danger of falling to the Commies, Mr. Freedom heads overseas to set things right. When the welcome he receives isn’t quite as warm as he expected, he gives up hope of steering the French away from the Reds and decides to salvage what he can by destroying the entire country.” Right. Serge made the hard funkin’ soundtrack together with Michel Colombier, I found that one this week. Interesting is that this is the first time he played with the Marseillaise (he would redo the national anthem later). No clue who sings this song, by the way.

Serge Gainsbourg & Michel Colombier – No No Yes Yes

Coverwise, I bumped into the album chanteuse Marie France made with Brigitte Bardot and Gainsbourg-covers. She stays very close to the original versions, alas, but it has nice details. See a French documentary on Marie France here, see her sing Bardot here.

Marie France – Tu veux ou tu veux pas
Marie France & Aurelien Wiik – Bonnie & Clyde

And finally, we already knew that Neil Hannon and his Divine Comedy are big fans of French music (Brel, Gainsbourg, etc). New album Bang Goes the Knighthood sports a bonus-cd with live-recorded covers of songs by Jacques Dutronc, Vanessa Paradis, Jacques Brel and Vicky Leandros. But also a reprise of Charlotte Gainsbourg’s The Songs That We Sing – a chanson Neil wrote for her. See live videos of that concert on Youtube, for instance here, and here.

The Divine Comedy – The Songs that we Sing