The latest Box Set from el records is out this Friday the 22nd February!
“I was for a very long time passionately in love with her, as I’m sure she’s guessed. Every male in the world, and a number of females also, were, and we all still are.” David Bowie
She has been called “The Epitome of the Modern Woman,”, Liz from Billy Liar made real, and “Garbo meets Greco”. Mick Jagger described her as his “ideal woman”. Bob Dylan even dedicated a poem to her.
Françoise Hardy’s dreamy debut album, recorded when she was just eighteen, features ‘Tous Les Garçons Et Les Filles’ (All The Boys And Girls), a song that was less a hit than a social phenomenon. The single sold five million copies worldwide.
The public responded to Françoise’ disarming naturalness; her singular, understated voice; the combination of intensity, intelligence and mystery. And the way she so effortlessly combined simplicity with sophistication. She was a breath of fresh air.
Françoise’ vital debut recordings are presented here alongside “Françoise Hardy – Canta Per Voi In Italiano” (Sings For You In Italian), and complemented by an anthology of sublime instrumental jazz sessions by her friend and contemporary, Sacha Distel. In the period when these recordings were made – before he became an international singing star – Sacha was widely considered to be the finest jazz guitarist in France, winning many polls and recording prolifically. (Françoise would later appear as a guest on Sacha’s TV show where they performed a duet, accompanied by his guitar, a beautiful version of ‘Le Premier Bonheur Du Jour’)
The set includes historic sessions with John Lewis of the Modern Jazz Quartet, with the Belgian saxophonist/flautist Bobby Jaspar and with guitarist Jean-Pierre Sasson; Sacha’s tribute to the master, the “Hommage A Django” EP, and the first recording of his most famous composition, ‘Marina (The Good Life)’ – the million selling song which would become one of the great standards of Easy Listening and prove over many decades to be a signature tune for Tony Bennett. It was written originally for Roger Vadim’s contribution to the “L’orgueil (Pride)” chapter of the portmanteau film, “Les sept péchés capitaux (The Seven Deadly Sins)”; the sequence appearing alongside sketches by Godard, Chabrol and Demy.
One of the most unusual items of the presentation is ‘Altitude !0.500’, a rare single which features Sacha’s performance of Django Reinhardt’s war-time French resistance masterpiece, ‘Nuages’ (Clouds), taped at cruising altitude of 10,500 meters (28,000 feet) over Deauville, on board Air France’s Alsace Caravelle; in part to enable to airline to promote the ambiance inside the jet’s fuselage.