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 !