I always feel awe and appreciation for people with eclectic tastes in music (How could someone like both techno AND country??). But oftentimes, I’ve noticed that even the most versatile listeners distance themselves from music from other countries. I don’t know if it’s because unknown languages are intimidating or if it’s because the US does not really publicize foreign music, but many people are missing out on the spectacles of music from another language. I have loved French music for some time now, and would like to share five songs that everyone should know. French is such a beautiful and interesting language – I hope you feel the same way!
“Quelqu’un m’a dit”- Carla Bruni
“Quelqu’un m’a dit” is lighthearted and sweet. Carla Bruni’s voice is the perfect complement to a soft acoustic guitar. If you feel like you’ve heard this song before, it’s because it was on the 500 Days of Summer soundtrack!
“Comme des Enfants”- Coeur de Pirate
One of my favorites. “Comme des Enfants” is a beautiful song about a girl who loves her boyfriend, but loves another guy as well. She sings, “Mais il m’aime encore, et moi je t’aime un peu plus fort.” Which translates into, “But he still loves me, but I love him just a little bit more.” Even if you can’t comprehend the lyrics, the song is too lovely to pass up.
“La Vie En Rose”- Edith Piaf
This classic, which translates into “My Life in Pink”, is one of the most iconic French songs ever written. It was used in the soundtrack of La Vie En Rose, the first French language film to win an Oscar. This song has also been performed by famous jazz musician Louis Armstrong. Listen to this and you’ll find yourself teleported to the streets of 1940s France.
“Backside Grind”- Plan B
I know you’re probably wondering why this French song has an English title and sounds like a dirty club song, but bear with me. Plan B, now named Music Box, is a band to watch. Though they started off as a band that made remixes of popular songs, Music Box deserves acclaim for their original music. Fusing electronic and hip-hop, this group impresses with its unique sound and beats.
“Safari Disco Club” – Yelle
If you are not already familiar with Yelle, she’s like France’s more electronic, ’80s version of Katy Perry. She’s fun and upbeat and sings songs that everybody would want to dance to. Her music is something you would hear at a discotheque, and is quick and unique. It’s impossible not to be infected by Yelle’s contagious electro-pop energy.