Woman of the Month: France Gall
It was a sad moment for many francophones when France Gall passed away in 2018. The singer of our hit of the month is a true landmark of the French musical scene. Let’s take a look at the life of this iconic woman in the spirit of going back, moving forward!
Who was France Gall and what is yé-yé?
France Gall was a French yé-yé singer – a style of pop music that emerged from Southern Europe and was popular at the beginning of the 1960s. In fact, the term “yé-yé” stems from the English “yeah! yeah!”, made popular by British bands like the Beatles.
In 1965, France Gall recorded the iconic single for children ‘Sacré Charlemagne’. Have a listen through the link in our newsletter! No other song captures the spirit of La Rentrée quite as well as this. The catchy tune is known by virtually everyone in France, heightening the excitement of the little ones for la rentrée and making mum and dad nostalgically reminiscing about the good old days. A true classic!
Fighting against the odds
Did you know that Gall was consequently selected to represent Luxembourg at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1965 and won the Grand Prix? This was no easy achievement. Her song Poupée de cire, poupée de son was allegedly booed at rehearsals for straying so far from the norm. Her live performance was also criticised, her lover at the time even shouted at her for singing off-tune. Despite the odds being against her, Gall powered through and overcame all obstacles. Chapeau, France!
A French superstar
Gall was a true woman at the forefront of her era. Not only did her musical career flourish in France, but she also made a name for herself in Germany. This superstar, however, never forgot to give back. In 1984, Gall became part of Chanteurs Sans Frontières and also worked for S.O.S Ethiopie!
Death and Legacy
A long term breast-cancer survivor, France passed away in Neuilly-sur-Seine after a two year battle at the age of 70. In 2001, her legacy was commemorated in a documentary film that was watched by millions of French people.
France Gall – the face behind Sacré Charlemagne – left her mark on French history. Why not listen to one of her songs on youtube to delve into the past and get in the spirit for la rentrée? Do as the French would do!