Julien Clerc, whose real name is Paul-Alain Leclerc, is a French singer who sees his parents divorce when he is only 2 years old, and whose future mother-in-law, except for the fact that she will give him 5 demi - brothers and sisters, will especially introduce him to music by putting him on the piano.
But also by taking him regularly to the Théatre des Champs-Elysées to listen to educational concerts-conferences.
Originally intended for higher education, it was in 1968 that his fate shifted when he composed his first pieces. The meeting with Etienne Roda-Gill a while ago will also be decisive in the following events because the latter will become his official lyricist during the 1970s.
His first single "La cavalerie" was released the same year under the Pathé-Marconi label. And in these troubled times, young people see in this title a reference to the fight against boredom. The title is a huge success and the singer's notoriety explodes overnight.
In 1969, after a tour with Adamo and an opening act for Gilbert Bécaud at the Olympia, producer Annie Fargue offered him the lead role in an upcoming musical called "Hair". He starts by refusing… then accepts in the end. We know the rest.
The same year, the flagship single "La Californie" was released. New success.
The hits will follow one another at a phenomenal speed, "Ce n'est rien" in 1971, "Niagara" "Si on chantait", "Le patineur" in 1972, "Partir" in 1977, "Ma préférence" in 1978 ...
"Ma préférence from the album "Jaloux", album which will be his biggest sale since the beginning of his career with more than 800,000 copies sold.
The transition from one decade to the next takes place without his favorite lyricist, whom he separated in 1980. A perfectly successful transition that started with a first hit "Quand je joue" from the album "Clerc Julien".
Followed in 1982 by the album "Femmes, indiscrétion, blasphème" from which will be extracted two hits which are "Lili voulait aller danser" and the enormously and dazzling "Femmes je vous aime". Year of physical metamorphosis also, no more curls, lively short hair.
The singer is at the height of his popularity but has too many concerts and snorts prohibited substances to withstand the shock. The result was not long in coming : the voice was damaged dangerously.
A recovery is necessary, which is done. Starting with taking singing lessons to save his voice.
Resumption salutary because the hits will be linked at a phenomenal speed : "Coeur de rocker", "La fille au bas nylon", "Mélissa", "Hélène" to end in apotheosis in 1989 with the magnificent "Fais moi une place" which will close a new particularly prolific decade.
But the career of this gifted will not end there, far from it. To be continued ...
To discover or rediscover.
Discography (among others ...) :
La cavalerie 1968
Yann et les dauphins 1969
La Californie 1969
Si tu reviens 1969
Des larmes sucrées 1969
Laissons entrer le soleil 1969
Des jours entiers à t'aimer 1970
Quatre heures du matin 1970
Les fleurs des gares 1970
Le caravanier 1970
Le coeur volcan 1971
Berce moi 1971
Ce n’est rien 1971
A chaque jour 1972
Si on chantait 1972
Le patineur 1972
Ca fait pleurer le bon dieu 1973
Danse's y 1974
C'est une andalouse 1974
Elle voulait qu'on l'appelle Venise 1975
This melody 1975
Souffrir par toi n'est pas souffrir 1975
Le coeur trop grand pour moi 1976
Ma préférence 1978
Ça commence comme un rêve d'enfant 1979
Chanson d'Emilie Jolie 1979
Ma doudou 1980
Quand je joue 1980
Femmes je vous aime 1982
Lili voulait aller danser 1982
Coeur de rocker 1983
La fille au bas nylon 1984
Bambou bar 1985
Mon ange 1987
L'enfant au walkman 1987
Fais moi une place 1989
Fille du feu 1990
Petits pois lardons 1990
Le verrou 1991
Amazone à la vie 1994
C'est mon espoir 1997
Assez assez 1997
Les séparés 1997
Marquise de Carabat 1998
1968 ... the beginnings not very comfortable, to say the least, of a youngster who will become one of the greatest French singers of the end of the XXth century
1968 ... an exceptional first year of career which saw him link two incredible titles in succession. In particular this one which is distinguished by an extraordinary lyricism and depth
1969 ... the hardest part was knowing if young Julien was going to be able to confirm all the good that we think of him. It's done with this title ...
1969 ... nothing and no one can stop him in his meteoric rise to the heights of glory. Here he obtains his first title ranked No.1 in the hits parades. The first page of the legend has just been written ...
1969 ... a unique style and voice that really sets him apart from the crowd. The young singer is becoming one of the biggest phenomena of the moment. And that's only the beginning !
1969 ... the year 1968 was exceptional for the young artist. The year 1969 is going to be a cut above again. Yes Yes, it's possible !
1969 ... the ultimate musical comedy straight from the United States which will raise the singer to a maximum level of popularity. Thank you 'Hair' !
1970 ... we could have said that after such a sensational start to a career, the continuation and entry into this new decade would prove to be more complicated to manage than expected. Oh no. It will even be quite the opposite !
1970 ... now he is on a rate of 3 to 4 top hits per year. An incredible productivity which raises him very far above the competition to whom he leaves only crumbs ...
1970 ... and always in this very particular style which is, and will always remain, his trademark. Notably this quavering voice unlike any other ...
1970 ... he sometimes accelerates the tempo, exceptional fact. He is incredibly effective in the Intimist, but he also shows significant aptitudes in other registers. Beautiful versatility !
1971 ... parenthesis quickly closed in this new year and a resounding return to the Intimist. A new title which allows him once again to give the best of himself in this register in which he excels impressively
1971 ... an extraordinary inspiration that saw him emerge as exceptional title after exceptional title. A know-how among the best of the moment and this undoubtedly !
1971 ... it's a surge of incredible hits that literally overwhelms France. Including this one which will remain as one of its most emblematic. We almost touch perfection. MAS-TER-FUL !
1971 ... a light and airy title that once again demonstrates all its versatility and its ability to alternate between the 'emotional' register and the 'carefree' register. HU-GE !
1972 ... the years follow one another, just like the titles of very high caliber. Each title released = 1 top hit. A truly incredible dynamic !
1972 ... an incredible dynamic that produces this kind of title. A marvel of lightness which takes all of France with it and which definitively consecrates him as one of the most gifted artists of his generation. MO-NU-MEN-TAL !
1972 ... an absolutely incredible year 1972 which saw him align 3 legendary titles with the culmination of this monument of finesse and softness. Absolutely A-MA-ZING !
1973 ... a festive and popular singer who makes festive and popular songs. As France knew how to do so well in the 1970s. What more could you ask for !
1974 ... the years go by and the momentum does not weaken by an Iota. We tell ourselves that at some point the inspiration will weaken. Not for now, that's clear !
1974 ... he alternates more and more the different registers and in the festive field, he really begins to show aptitudes as extraordinary as in the Intimist field. The brand of the Greatest !
1975 .. here he even arrived in the field of Dance pure and hard. And again, it works perfectly. A real war machine !
1975 ... at the height of its creative power. Another amazing year that will see him follow Wonder after Wonder. Starting with this one !
1975 ... official supplier of incredible melodies that do a lot of good. A talent that is almost unique in its kind and which once again crushes the competition !
1976 ... a 'small' year, something extremely rare for him. After 8 years spent in familiar terms with the stars, he is marking time somewhat in this year 1976. But we suspect that it will not last ...
1977 ... we knew it wasn't going to last. A shattering comeback in 1977 which allowed him to sign one of his greatest titles here with a very original articulation which first plays in the Intimist register and ends in the festive register. He can do absolutely everything. MAS-TER-FUL !
1978 ... yet another extraordinary title with crazy lyricism and which takes us to emotional lands hitherto unsuspected. Pure magic, there are no other words !
1979 ... the end of the 1970s when the production of titles slowed down noticeably, but the quality was still at the Premium level. The singer experiments more and more and explores new musical lands. An adaptation necessary for the 1980s which will totally revolutionize, and above all upset, musical standards ...
1979 ... he masterfully alternates sound experiments and a return to fundamentals. On this title, we will be more in the 2nd category. Fundamentals that are still working at the end of the decade but which will still have to be damn younger !
1979 ... yet another participation that will not go unnoticed in a musical. Even if his role in it will not be on the level of 'Hair', he still participates in the most emblematic title of the musical. Whatever he touches, it immediately turns to gold ...
1980 ... the biggest unknown is to know if he will succeed in adapting to this decade 80 which promises to be unique in its kind. Not to mention that the competition has renewed and that it is particularly inspired. He will therefore have to give the best of himself, once again ...
1980 ... one might think that the 1980s will rhyme with a decline in inspiration and a move into the 'Has been' category. Oh no. Not only will he adapt perfectly and even compete without any worries with little youngsters who would like to see him pass the hand !
1980 ... when we see what he manages to offer, it is clear that he has not lost any of his splendor and that he intends to defend his place as leader without giving up. The competition had better watch out !
1982 ... the WONDER of the WONDERS ! He will have interpreted Masterpieces of emotions. But here, we are almost touching the divine. An absolutely insane title and which will remain as one of the most beautiful songs of the end of the XXth century on the French side. A hymn to the woman of a beauty rarely achieved. ABSOLUTE MAS-TER-PIE-CE !
1982 ... a supercharged and airy title that spins at 200 km/h. We almost come close to the exit of the road but anyway, the singer shows here in a dazzling way that he still has the energy of hell and that it is set to last !
1983 ... it was a wave of mega hits during the 70s. Well, nothing changes. It was another wave of mega hits during the 80s. Not only did he adapt perfectly but he even teaches the competition. It is not beautiful that !
1984 ... which will surely remain as his biggest hit Dance. More than 15 years after its debut, still in the game the guy and not just a little ! The Class, the big one, the real one. HU-GE !
1984 ... after the hymn to women, the hymn to diversity. The 80s will remain for him as the years of celebration or claim ...
1985 ... he will hardly have had any holes in his career. Since his beginnings in 1968, he has been present on the French music scene almost every year, a near record. But he is well worth it !
1985 ... a perfectly trendy sound that keeps him with disconcerting ease in the leading pack. To the greatest despair of his rivals who wonder how he does it !
1987 ... a title which will not be remembered as its best but of certain quality. We will largely be satisfied with it as they say ...
1987 ... return to festive and swaying mode with this Afro-Caribbean song. Undoubtedly one of his greatest successes of the decade. MAS-TER-FUL !
1987 ... after almost 20 years at the top of the scale, this title corresponds to the breaking point between the golden years and the beginning of the decline. We suspected that it could not last for decades, it had to happen one day ...
1989 ... we still end the decade in apotheosis with this new WONDER. A jewel of softness and finesse which literally floats in the air and which ends this decade in the best possible way. While waiting for a decade 90 which will prove to be more difficult to cross than expected ...
1990 ... and yet he has lost none of his talent, that's clear. But the new trends that are emerging in this new decade will push him slowly, but surely, towards the exit door ...
1990 ... anyway, he is not discouraged and continues on his way. On the other hand, it is clear that the task will become increasingly difficult ...
1991 ... he won't miss much for him to find his way back to success. Simply that little spark of genius that has accompanied him for decades. But who unfortunately went away ...
1992 ... on a musical basis that takes him back a few years, even a few decades, he signs here one of his most significant pieces of the decade. But that will not be enough to put him back in the race in a sustainable way ...
1993 ... an astonishing style in this decade of 90 which is its strength but also its great weakness. In this decade when the tempo has literally gone crazy, it is clear that he now acts as a UFO in the French musical landscape ...
1994 ... he remains undoubtedly one of the greatest French references in the field of the Intimist. An exceptional know-how, acquired from his first titles, and which he will keep forever ...
1997 ... moreover, he will hardly come out of this register until the end of the decade. And the titles that follow one after the other are still at a level of inspiration well above the average. Normal, he is one of the best in this area !
1997 ... and always those Afro-Caribbean rhythms which he loves and which he updates regularly. Sometimes it works, sometimes less. We would rather be on the 2nd consideration on this one ...
1997 ... back to Intimist mode, a register where he almost never misses the target, whatever the time. It was one of the biggest suppliers of exceptional titles in this field during the twentieth century. And just as such, he more than deserves its place in the French musical Pantheon !
1998 ... the end of the decade which saw him ease off somewhat. He delivers here a last major piece which will not change the situation concerning him unfortunately. Either way, see you the next decade. One more !
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Greatest Hits :