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French Music: Guy Béart’s “L’Eau vive” Posted by on Jul 2, 2018

Recently, my house has been afflicted by un ver d’oreille. The literally definition of this term is an “earworm.” But, don’t worry—this post isn’t about those nasty little insects. Rather, in French, un ver d’oreille is a catchy tune that you just can’t get out of your head. It began with my mother-in-law (ma belle mère) singing a song…

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La Coupe du Monde (The World Cup) Posted by on Jun 26, 2018

Any soccer (or, rather, football) fans out there are surely aware of the important games that are occurring now. It is, of course, the World Cup (La Coupe du Monde), which occurs only once every four years. Unfortunately for American fans, the United States did not make it through qualifications. But, you can always still root…

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French Lyrics: Le poinçonneur des Lilas Posted by on Jun 5, 2018

Last week, we went over Serge Gainsbourg’s beloved song “Le poinçonneur des Lilas.” Now, let’s take a look at the lyrics and the word play the famous chanteur/compositeur wrote. The catchy réfrain of this song begins: “J’fais des trous, des p’tits trous, encore des p’tits trous.” (“I make holes, little holes, and more little holes.”) This refers…

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French Music: “Le poinçonneur des Lilas” Posted by on Jun 1, 2018

One of the most famous musicians of all time is, of course, Serge Gainsbourg. But for non-native French listeners, it may be difficult to fully appreciate his music. Over the course of his career, Gainsbourg wrote some 550 songs…the lyrics of which often delve into puns and other forms of word play. Indeed, upon his…

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French Poetry: “La Coccinelle” de Victor Hugo Posted by on May 21, 2018

I always love the time of year when ladybugs start coming out. In French, a ladybug is called une coccinelle, and it symbolizes good luck. The French often refer to les coccinelles as “les bêtes à bon Dieu,” which means something like “Good God’s creatures.” Some linguists state that this expression dates back to medieval times. According to medieval legend…

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French Music: “Si Tu Veux” by Mumford and Sons Posted by on May 14, 2018

If you’re a diehard Mumford and Sons fan, you might be aware that they’ve released one song in French. “Si Tu Veux” is a collaboration between Mumford and Sons, the Senegalese singer Baaba Maal, the South African pop group Beatenberg, and the producer-vocalist The Very Best. It was released on their Johannesburg EP, which was…

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New French Music: Maître GIMS En duo avec Vianney Posted by on May 12, 2018

I’ve already written about the popular French artist Vianney. Well, he’s just come out with a new release en duo (in a duet) with the French rapper Maître GIMS. Maître GIMS is a well known French musician, a former member of the hip-hop group Sexion d’Assaut, and released his third solo album La Ceinture Noire (The Black Belt) in…

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