Coffee sans Lait. Check. (Vegan) Croissant. Check. Francoise Hardy gently coo-ing in your ear. Check. There probably isn’t a better way to spend a quiet Sunday morning than being serenaded by the Ye Ye girls while you chomp on a continental breakfast.
It is funny but so many of the most well known Ye Ye tracks are, well, a tad shouty. But for me the French language, and accent is at its most devastating in pop music, when whispered above a gentle melange of strings, keyboards and Macca-style bass.
Which means that L’Anamour, the wonderful cover of Gainsbourg classic rendered on this wonderful 60s pop Sunday playlist by Ms Hardy, one of the best pop songs ever. But after my extensive research – check out this book – I discovered that a lot of French filles did wonderful things with ballads.
France Gall has loads especially on her oddly psych 68 album and the folky singles and LPs that bookended the late sixties and early 70s. Francoise has albums worth of this stuff. And then there’s the more obscure stuff like Veronique Sanson – both sides of her late 60s single are wonderful – and Joanna Shimkus who I know zip all about.
And even more fun are the French language versions of English classics. Scott Walker fans check out La Musique by Nicoletta while Marie Laforet makes a Dylan classic her own.
Dubious inclusions here are Sandie Shaw, who released loads of French language recordings in the 60s and Claudine Longet, singing in, err, English, though she was born in France and has a real way with Franglais.
Finally, underneath is IMO quite possibly the best French 60s pop record not on Spotify. Victoire Scott – 4eme Dimension. You pay €300 for it now in Parisian record shops. And it is probably worth every Euro.
There’s more fun French pop stuff here.
The playlist is here