"Monsieur Fantaisie" - 16 Gallic groovy tunes on various 45s


In The Trashcan Records       GARBAGE41
"La fantaisie parfaite... does the perfect fantasy really exist? Here are 16 French and Belgian artists with uncommon 60s tunes. Really, is this just a fantasy? Or were these well known artists cooler than you could imagine or remember?"

Palette EPPB7281 1. ça m'est egal - gilles et dominique

Released on 01-01-1967 by Gilles Oliviers and Dominique Ney. This couple were from Belgium and released at least three 45s in the late 60s. It’s like a dialogue sung by both singers. Only one band ever tried (and successfully) to play this song on their live set and that was the (also Belgian) band called Dutronic. It’s all the same for me (= Ca m’est egal)
9. scotch cha cha - henri salvador

I bought this 45 for “Babylone 21-29”, his superb version of the Norman Maine classic. But this funny cha-cha b-side is more than just a sizzling hot cha cha tune. The story behind this recording is so funny if you can understand French.
Barclay 62111
Opal JAL01 2. le prédicateur - jo alan

Jo Alan or Jorge Aliane.This  B-side of  “Le demon du midi”  is also a typical late 60s Belgian soul/popsike tune and it’s all about the end of the world and the final judgment. Who’s gonna win? Lucifer? Who’s gonna pay? More about Jo Alan on vol 24 and vol 26.
10. cléopatre - henri salvador

French version of ‘Little Egypt’, the Leiber-Stoller classic which I loved since the first time I heard it (that was the Downliners Sect version). And isn’t the sleeve fantastic? More Salvador entries on vol 24, vol 37, vol 47 and most of all on vol 58.
Rigolo RI18727
RCA-Victor 49-864 3. speedy n° 1 - andre brasseur

Recorded live at the Locomotiv’Club and released in 1972. All instruments were played by Brasseur and his One Man Band (he called his His Multisound Organ). There’s a lot more to read about him on vol 2, vol 49, vol 52
and certainly on vol 31.
11. le mini-minimum - kiki

This youngster has recorded 3 or 4 EP’s. This one from '68 includes a French translation of  “The bare necessities” from the Disney movie “The jungle book”. More info on this young French lad can be found on vol 4.
Palette EPPB7304
Disques Fleche CF03 4. j'entends un symphonie - liliane st-pierre

It’s the fabulous Reg Guest Orchestra backing up the Belgian singer who was a Claude François protégée. Indeed, this is a '68 French translation of  “I hear a symphony”. And it works alright! The flip is not so interesting “Le brouillard est tombé sur la ville“. She is still performing and in the early 90s she represented Belgium for the Eurovision song contest.
12. est-ce que tu m'aimes - nancy holloway

This b-side of “Dix bons raisons” is a French translation of The Contours’ “Do you love me”. I  think it was recorded around 1964. Nancy Holloway recorded a lot of 45s, but most are too cheesy, even for me.
Decca 70951
Palette 2PAL22003 5. relax baby - les cousins

On vol 20 you could listen to their own English version. This '62 French version comes from an EP which also contains “Le Robot” (or “The Robot” as it was called on several compilations of guitar instrumentals), “Je reviendrai my love” and “Hey hey”, a cover of a Will Tura recording. The Cousins (or the Continental Cousins as Tim Warren called them) still are the best known 60s guitar band from Belgium.
13. la nuit est là - eddy richards & the musketeers

Almost nothing is known about this guy. It starts as a Ventures-like instrumental, but then it turns out to be a great beat song from around 1964. Two breaks in the song make it even more enjoyable. He’s got a funny French accent, though.
Ferlayn 1020
Riviera 121325 6. viens tous les soirs - nino ferrer
Some kind of a sitar invites you to this middle eastern flavoured chanson by one of the greatest of the French sixties, Nino Ferrer. It’s a song about Mustapha in 1961 (it means “Come every night”). It’s B-side is “L’amour, la mort, les enterrements” or “Love, death, burials”.
14. pa sou ça - jho archer

Is this Creole? Sounds a little bit French, but I can’t understand anything. It’s a weird version of “Ca ne me dit rien”; the a-side is “La première à savoir”, a French version of “Among the first to know”. Wild uptempo tune by this completely unknown guy.
CBS 3853
Mercury 154 627 MCF 7. cher monsieur fantaisie - herbert leonard

A great undiscovered psychedelic pop song from the late 60s. Herbert Leonard has recorded more cool 45s including French translations of “Somebody to love” and “The letter”. This b-side is one of his best efforts.
15. fière de toi - audrey

Hey, cool off now. A slow tune by a sweet darling called Audrey. Released on Henri Salvador’s own label. Audrey is “proud of you” and everybody must know it. The other three songs are ballads as well.
Salvador 434-852BE
Vogue V45-1363 8. un éléphant me regarde - antoine

Not the best known Antoine 45 “Un éléphant  me regarde” (= “An elephant is watching me”) has always been one of my favourites. It’s so brilliant that I also included his Italian version on vol 55. Both recordings are from 1967.
16. la guerre - antoine

Now another EP with 4 own compositions by the king of French beatnik culture: Antoine. This '65 anti-war protest song is one of his first recordings. The other songs on this EP are fine as well. Not so easy to find this one, though.
Vogue EPL8401