FS Rerun: How Sad Venice Can Be

Charles Aznavour? Wasn’t that the somewhat square old entertainer in the grey suit you saw on dozens of awful tv shows all those years ago? Maybe. Aznavour also was Charlie, the forlorn dude in Truffaut’s Tirez sur le pianiste (see pic) who smoked all those cigarettes like nobody had it done before, shared the bed with Michèle Mercier and Nicole Berger, and murmered some of the coolest lines ever to be uttered between love and loneliness („Silence is amorous complicity“). Sadness was also one of the keywords in his chansons, as well in Que c’est triste Venise, a sentimental kitsch masterpiece remade by the equally great Bobby Darin in 1965, U.S. grand scope showroom heartbreak style.
Charles Aznavour – Que c’est triste Venise
Bobby Darin – Venice Blue

Bonus: The Other Serge revealing where to find the gondolas of your mind.

Serge Reggiani – Venise n’est pas en Italie

FS Rerun: The Other Serge

Casque d’or, La ronde, Le doulos, L’armée des ombres: Serge Reggiani  was already a highly acclaimed star of the French silver screen when he – encouraged by Simone Signoret and Yves Montand – turned to singing in 1965 with SR chante Boris Vian. His chef d’œuvre may well be Rupture (1971; see right) – a brilliant album oscillating between grand melancholy, mild cynicism and mature knowledge unsurpassed in the history of French song. La putain combines Reggiani’s unique phrasing with a perfectly arranged composition by Michel Legrand and the classy poetic imagery of lyricist Jean-Loup Dabadie – a 3:42 min short story about the lost bird of youth and those secrets behind the jalousies.

Serge Reggiani – La putain

Bonus: Serge G. with his seldom-played take on whores from the soundtrack of Just Jaeckin’s 1977 soft-porn flick Madame Claude (PG recommended), with a wink and a sneer towards Bach’s Jésus, que ma joie demeure.

Serge Gainsbourg – Putain que ma joie demeure