Renaud against Sarko

I love French pop. We love French pop in my family. When I was a student and a young mother in Paris, I used to cross paths every morning with my idol, french popsinger Renaud, in the Paris Mosque quartier, near Paris's botanical garden. He, accompanying his daughter Lola to school and me taking my own daughter to the daycare.

He is a tall tiny man with eyes like volcanoes. The son of teachers and militant socialists, Renaud's carreer and the songs he authors cannot be differentiated from his politic. He was a fierce critic of the French society, the military, the bourgeois and the political establishment, even the one he used to identify with, the socialist party.

This was the time when
France's artistic leftist elite was hopeful. Mitterand had just won the presidency and the country was gearing towards change after a long period of social stagnation, positive change we thought. Il était permis de tout espérer.

Unfortunately, Tony Blair did not invent the third way. It was invented before him by Mitterrand. By the end of the eighties,
France's left was only surviving and a sense of hopelesness and pessimism was palpable. We left Paris in 1991 with, in our luggages, Renaud's songs and we settled in Montréal.

It was a strange and awkward feeling when, everytime we would drive from Montréal, with our two young children in the car, to the nearest location in the
US where we could reach the sea, the reality of the landscape we were crossing didn't match what we listened to in the car, Renaud's songs. My children grew up knowing by heart some of Renaud's songs.

We then stopped hearing from Renaud, no new albums, nothing...We were told that his wife left him and that he was battling an alcohol addiction. Four years ago, he came to give a concert in Montréal. I bought tickets and after reading the negative critics of his first performance night here, I decided not to go. I didn't want to be disappointed. Renaud was recovering...

Looking at the news today, it occured to me that Renaud's recovery was probably complete.
He is back wit a new album and a song against Sarkozy. France's cultural particularism is that at a certain moment in its history, only one person become to symbolise an aspect of the French society, and Renaud is the symbol of tolerant France and also the one that will not surrender to American cultural kitsh and America's neo-con and neoliberal values.

Here is an excerpt of his new song portraying a typical Sarkozy voter:
Elle est facho.
Elle a surtout la nostalgie du sabre et du goupillon.
De la nation, de la patrie, débarrassée d'l'immigration.
Dit qu'l'ancien temps était béni, comme disent la plupart des cons.
Regrette le temps des colonies, la peine de mort légalisée, de l'avortement interdit,et maudit les jeunes filles voilées.
Et elle lit National hebdo.
Elle est facho.
J'lui souhaite qu'un jour si elle a un môme,
y s'retrouve à 18 balais,plein d'éducation et d'diplômes,d'idées rebelles, d'humanité.
Et qu'il lui dise, tes vieux discours manquent singulièrement d'amour.
Qu'il rajoute à la triste dame,reste donc le nez dans ta merde.
J'suis amoureux d'une musulmane,
j'vote écolo et j'fume de l'herbe.
Espérons qu'ça lui fera la peau.
A la facho.
Espérons qu'ça lui fera la peau.
A la facho.....qui vote Sarko

No comments:

Since March 29th 2006