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French Country Music: Baptiste W. Hamon Posted by on Feb 22, 2017 in Culture, Music

When I’m walking around France the entire world is my textbook. The sounds of everyday life teach me new things like what exactly un tournevis is or how to buy batteries. I also get to hear de la musique française (French music) just by walking around, but sometimes I hear a song I really like and have no idea who is singing it!

Photo by J’ai écouté. Licensed under CC BY 2.0.

A few months ago I was in un café and between sips of du café I noticed la musique. I really liked it, but had never heard it before. I had to ask le serveur (the barista) who was singing!

Excusez-moi, Madame…
Oui…
Qui chante cette chanson ?
Ah, c’est Baptiste W. Hamon.
J’aime bien sa voix, il n’y a pas beaucoup de chanteurs comme lui en France.
Ouais, et vous savez, il fait un concert ce soir à Paris ! Vous pouvez aller le voir !
Ouais je pourrais… mais malheureusement je n’ai pas de temps.
C’est dommage !

Excuse me, Ma’am…
Yes…
Who sings this song?
Ah, it’s Baptiste W. Hamon.
I really like his voice, there aren’t a lot of singers like him in France.
Yeah, and you know, he has a concert tonight in Paris! You can go see him!
Yeah I could… but unfortunately I don’t have the time.
That’s too bad!

Même si (even if) I didn’t get to see Baptiste W. Hamon en concert (in concert), I did make sure to remember his name and look up la chanson when I got home!

Alors qui est Baptiste W. Hamon ?
So who is Baptiste W. Hamon?

Baptiste W. Hamon is a newcomer to the French music scene. His first album came out last year en 2016. Son style (his style) is a mix of la musique folk et country américaine (American folk and country music). While he does occasionally sing en anglais (in English), he mostly sings en français (in French), while keeping son style américain.

As an American, it makes his songs sound somewhat familiar even though they are in French!

I wanted to share that first song I heard in le café with all of you, and remind everyone to ask qui chante cette chanson when you are in la francophonie and you hear une chanson that you love!

Voici la chanson de Baptiste W. Hamon avec les paroles :

Moi j’aime une fille son nom, c’est Joséphine
Je prends sa main, on danse dans le noir
Moi j’aime une fille son nom, c’est Joséphine

Me, I love a girl, her name is Joséphine
I take her hand, we dance in the dark
Me, I love a girl, her name is Joséphine

Elle porte en elle les griffes du désespoir
Elle aime Wagner, elle bouquine Kropotkine
Elle cache des rimes, tout au fond de mon lit
Elle cache des larmes tout au fond d’un fou rire
Moi j’aime une fille qui a déjà songé au pire

She carries with her deep despair
She loves Wagner, she reads Kropotkin
She hides rhymes at the very end of my bed
She hides tears right behind her giggles
Me, I love a girl a girl who has already thought of the worst

Elle pleure parfois le long de l’océan
Elle pense au triste qui régissait l’enfance
Elle pleure parfois je la prends dans mes bras
Parfois c’est moi, oh mais elle ne me voit pas

Sometimes she cries by the ocean-side
She thinks about the sadness that controlled her childhood
Sometimes she cries, I hold her in my arms
Sometimes it’s me, oh but she does not see me

Allez danse ma belle, nous ne faisons que passer
Oh prends ma main, bientôt revient l’été
Allez chante ma douce c’est si bon l’insouciance
Oh viens vers moi rien n’a plus d’importance
Moi j’aime une fille son nom, c’est Joséphine
Je prends sa main, on danse dans le noir
Moi j’aime une fille son nom, c’est Joséphine
Elle porte en elle les griffes du désespoir

Go dance my dear, we are only playing
Oh take my hand, Summer will come back soon
Go sing my sweetie, that carelessness is so good
Oh come to me, there’s nothing more important
Me, I love a girl, her name is Joséphine
I take her hand, we dance in the dark
Me, I love a girl, her name is Joséphine
She carries with her deep despair

Moi j’aime une fille son nom, c’est Joséphine
Je prends sa main, on danse dans le noir
Moi j’aime une fille son nom, c’est Joséphine
Elle est pour moi l’esquisse d’un espoir

Me, I love a girl, her name is Joséphine
I take her hand, we dance in the dark
Me, I love a girl, her name is Joséphine
For me she is a shadow of hope

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About the Author: John Bauer

John Bauer is an enthusiast for all things language and travel. He currently lives in France where he's doing his Master's. John came to France four years ago knowing nothing about the language or the country, but through all the mistakes over the years, he's started figuring things out.