French Music – A Christmas Song Posted by on Dec 24, 2019 in Culture, Music, Vocabulary

Today is le réveillon de Noël (Christmas eve) … et demain c’est Noël (tomorrow is Christmas). And while it is a time of joy and celebrations for many, it is also a time to remember those who cannot fully enjoy the saison des fêtes (holiday season) for whatever reason.

In 2015, the French singer Michel Polnareff released this song, his first since 2007, to less than stellar reviews. Maybe some were disappointed by the song, maybe some were put off by the subject … whatever the case, I found it to be a moving reminder to be grateful for the love and good fortunate that I have and to spare une pensée (a thought) for those who might have less. What ever your situation, religion, or beliefs, I would like to wish you un très joyeux Noël (a very happy/merry Christmas).

Sapin éteint , The (Christmas) tree is switched off,
Les boules tombent et cassent au son des ohohoh The (decorative) balls fall and break to the sound of ohohoh
Les parents dorment indifférents ohoh ohohoh The parents sleep indifferently ohoh ohohoh
Fait noir dedans et blanc dehors ohohohoh Black inside and white out ohohohoh
J’ai faim, I’m hungry,
J’ai froid, I’m cold,
J’ai peur, I’m scared,
Je pleure, I weep,
Je suis seul I am alone
(Il) y a pas d(e) soleil dans mon hiver There is no sunshine in my winter
L’homme en rouge n’a rien pour moi The man in red has nothing for me
Pas d(e) cadeau dans le sac à dos No presents in the sack
L’homme en rouge ne passera pas The man in red won’t by coming
J(e) suis personne I am nobody
Je n’existe pas I don’t exist
L’homme en rouge ne viendra pas The man in red won’t be coming
Il se moque1se moquer de quelqu’un or de quelque chose can also mean to make fun of but here it is used in the sense of to not care about / not have a care for de gens comme moi He doesn’t care about people like me
L’homme en rouge ne m(e) connaît pas The man in red doesn’t know me
Qu’on n(e) me dise pas que j’ai mérité d’être ignoré à ce point là Don’t tell me that I deserve to be ignored this way
Que les gosses d’en face gâtés pourris sont bien, bien mieux que moi That the spoiled rotten kids across the way are good, much better than me
Ils dansent, They dance
Ils chantent, They sing
Et me narguent au son des ohohoh And tease me with their ohohoh
Je suis seul sur une terre qui tourne sans moi I am alone in a world that turns without me
(Il) y a pas de soleil dans ma misère There is no sunshine in my misery
L’homme en rouge ne m(e) réchauffera pas The man in red will not warm me
(Il) y a pas de lumière dans mon tunnel There is no sunlight2soleil lit. means sun but it can also mean, depending on the context, sunshine or sunlight in my tunnel
L’homme en rouge ne l’allumera pas The man in red won’t light it (up)
Il n’y a plus de mensonges pour le soir There will be no more lies tonight
L’homme en rouge ne viendra pas The man in red won’t be coming
Tout le monde mérite d’être heureux Everyone deserves to be happy
Tout le monde et pourquoi pas moi? Everyone … so why not me?
(Il) y a pas de soleil dans mon désert There is no sunlight in my desert
Il ne le traversera pas He won’t cross it
Je pleure un fleuve pas trop tranquille I cry a turbulent river
Jamais il ne le séchera That he will never dry
Je suis seul ce soir de linceul I am alone on this night of mourning3linceul lit. means shroud
Même pas un petit jouet cassé Not even a small broken toy
L’année prochaine ce sera pareil Next year it will be the same
L’homme en rouge il n’existe pas The man in read doesn’t exist

Photo by Irina Iriser from Pexels

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About the Author: Tim Hildreth

Lise: Maybe not always. Paris has ways of making people forget. / Jerry: Paris? No, not this city. It's too real and too beautiful. It never lets you forget anything. It reaches in and opens you wide, and you stay that way. / An American in Paris


  1. Maria Szili:

    Hi Tim, mercy beaucoup for posting this beautiful song. I have started to learn francais only 2 week ago because of a song. I have learnt my first lesson from a book what I bought online called Hugo.
    The original song was S.O.S. an terrian en detresse. I heard it first time from Dimash, then I have found a french boy to sing it. He has got an angelic voice. I love your post. Thank you again. I wish you Happy New Year with a lot of benediction. Greetings from London!

    • Tim Hildreth:

      @Maria Szili Merci, Maria. I am happy to hear that you enjoyed this post and that you are learning French. You can find lots of great resources here from Transparent Language to help you too! 😉 The song you mentioned is from an old French musical called Starmania. You can learn more about it here: . Bonne Année!