Obviously she’s still alive, 99 years old – she’s even got a Facebook page. In the late 30s and during the first half of the 40s, Léo Marjane was one of the biggest songbirds in France, with her sultry and somewhat forlorn voice that enriched great songs like Seule ce soir, a tune credited to Charles Trenet everywhere but actually written by Paul Jules Durand; don’t trust the internet. The role model of La Piaf, Marjane fell from grace abruptly after the Liberation of France in August 1944, having performed a little bit too enthusiastically at cabarets and dancing halls frequented by Wehrmacht soldiers and the SS. The applause of the wrong guys catapulted her into the abyss of oblivion, but as we all know, every abyss has an echo: Rarely it sounds as sweet as in Seule ce soir, and surely in Léo’s Gallic version of the all-time classic September in the Rain.

Léo Marjane – Seule ce soir
Léo Marjane – En Septembre dans la pluie