Well! My previous post of Barbara Pravi skyrocketed with hundreds of views from all over the world. (I swear, I have the quietest blog readers … aside from my small, loyal fan base, not many readers leaves comments!?)
So I’m thinking that in these troubled times people are craving authenticity, humanity, connection. Because music connects people emotionally, I thought of the well-loved Charles Aznavour.
Aznavour was French-Armenian. He died on October 1, 2018 at the age of 94.
Here’s his signature song on YouTube. 24,163,836 views –
(193) Charles Aznavour – La Boheme – B&W – HQ Audio – YouTube
Thank you for the Charles Aznavour tip!
Perhaps 25 years ago, while having an espresso in a Paris cafe, the music being played gave several customers pause, a couple of conversations stopped just to listen to a woman’s powerful, soulful voice. A woman held her cigarette aloft, lost to the song. I did not have the nerve to ask the waiter for the music details.
Fast forward 10 years to a hole in the wall Vietnamese restaurant, the same song is played. This time I asked the owner…. “Les Feuilles Mortes” by Dalida. Her family left Vietnam for France and then ultimately to the US. I’ll always remember the emotional impact Dalida had on the patrons at the cafe.
Ah, yes, Dalida, another legendary voice loved by all. The next time you go to Paris you must visit her tombstone at Montmartre cemetery, it’s huge and magnificent. Born in Egypt to Italian parents, she came to Paris in the 1950s. She had a tumultuous love life and, sadly, committed suicide at her Montmartre home in 1987 (a drug overdose.) Alongside her body was a note that read, “La vie m’est insupportable… Pardonnez-moi” which translates to “Life is unbearable for me… Forgive me.”
It’s just amazing how someone so popular and loved the world over can die by their own hand – alone, lonely and depressed. She complained often of loneliness. She had a troubled childhood because of her violent father who beat her (and who knows what else) which explains her turbulent love life. Despite the glory, there was also tragedy in Dalida’s life.
I’m glad you liked the Aznavour clip. I think I’m onto something here … great singers from the past! Is this what we’re all craving right now?
P.S. Les Feuilles Mortes was originally a poem written by Jacques Prévert, the famous French poet, and first sung by Yves Montand.
Thanks for the memories …
You’re welcome, P&P.
My parents loved Aznavour and had all his records. I remember his voice floating through our house from the living room stereo when I was growing up. Brings back happy memories.
Ah, the living room stereo. In my house growing up it was Sinatra, Streisand, Brubeck, Tony Bennett and others. Indeed, happy memories when experiences were collective, shared as a family, and not individual with everyone closeted in their own room with headphones on. Thanks for commenting, PC.
Notre monument français. Merci pour les souvenirs, Juliette (la française) 🙂
Ha ha, merci à vous, Nicolas. Très bonne soirée.