Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Francoise Hardy, Marie Laforet & those Ye Ye Girls

When I was 17 in 1963 I saw a photo of this stunning new French singer with that angular face and the long hair so I had to get her record - so, the first record I ever bought was by Francoise Hardy (THEN The Beatles came along...). Her voice was little but the music was nice, even if I did not understand a word of it. She was a hit with Eurovision and her records were everywhere. She was likened to look like Mick Jagger! She was as hip as say Marianne Faithfull in London. I bought all her Vogue (record label) EPs - like these:
She went into the movies too - with Vitti in Vadim's CHATEAU EN SUEDE (a Francoise Sagan adaptation), popping up at the end of WHATS NEW PUSSYCAT? and was the girlfriend of Antonio Sabato in Frankenheimer's '66 GRAND PRIX. England may have led the pop field in the early and mid '60s, but French pop music was a separate world of its own which we liked to visit frequently.

Decades passed and Francoise is still singing - now with short grey hair, as stylish as ever, and sounding much the same. Its been fun downloading her tracks from iTunes and copying over some CDs. She has been discovered all over again and her recent album is as fascinating as she ever was - she is still a style icon. She also guests (as does Catherine Denueve) on Malcolm McLaren's "Paris" CD.

The other French Ye-Ye girls incudes Slyvie Vartan and there are lots others on YouTube - one could spend all day watching them; there is a terrific one of Francoise, Sylvie and Etienne Daho. Sylvie also does an amazing "Bette Davis Eyes". There is a nice Hardy site at:

Marie Laforet came to my attention as Marge in Rene Clements' PLEIN SOLEIL where she is mysterious and stunningly attractive - again, like Hardy and Vitti its a stunning face. She is still acting,and sings too - I have an album of hers. Vive le French girls. Greco may have been the template but Francoise, Marie, Sylvia and the others are still up there.


  1. I love Francoise Hardy. Her last two albums have been excellent. I actually only recently started listening to Juliette Greco, and have found myself preferring her more recent work, as well, as opposed to her heyday hits. She has that throaty, Gauloise- and red wine-soaked sound now that I find irresistible...

  2. Fantastic post- Francoise Hardy and Marie Laforet are two of the most relevant french artist from the 60. Francopise's compositions are just amazing, and Marie interpretation into the folk thats wow. Dont forget to try "Barbara" another talented french girl singer (and composer) but alwsys "malenconiquly dark", and Frida Boccara (what a voice!)


    Frida Boccara(live):,cent-mille-chansons,vmvkp.html

    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. Thanks for these - Barbara, Frida and Patricia are also stunning!