Sylvie Vartan (in Bulgarian Силви Вартан) is a French singer of Bulgarian origin born to a Bulgarian father of Armenian origin and a mother of Hungarian origin. Singer who started her artistic career very early not in song but in cinema at the age of 7 in a Bulgarian film called 'Under the Yoke'.
As life in Bulgaria under the Soviet era became more and more oppressive, his family decided to emigrate to France in the early 1950s. Even if the early days were somewhat difficult, the family quickly adapted to the French life and it was at the beginning of the 1960s that the fate of the young girl was to change radically.
It is her brother, Eddie, who will allow her to meet producer Daniel Filipacchi, who will quickly see in her a more than obvious potential. Producer who in 1961 will make her record a first disc called "Panne d'Essence", a duet with Frankie Jordan which will know a significant success and launch for good the career of the singer.
In the process, his first single solo “Quand le film est triste” is released. Happiness never arriving alone, she was offered the first part of Gilbert Bécaud, then that of another singer and not least to know...Johnny Hallyday.
But it's mostly "Est-ce que tu le sais ?" and “Le locomotion” in 1962 which will definitely raise her to the rank of phenomenon of the moment. Status that she confirmed and amplified 2 years later in 1964 with the enormous "La plus belle pour aller danser".
In 1965, her marriage to Johnny Hallyday was one of the biggest celebrity events of the year. Her fame is such, both artistically and personally, that she is talked about throughout Europe but also across the Atlantic.
New notorious successes in 1967 with the title "2'35 de bonheur" which she performed in a duet with Carlos then "Comme un garçon". Followed a year later in 1968 by the sumptuous "La Maritza" where she talks about her childhood in Bulgaria.
The end of the 1960s, like the start of the next decade, were to be a little less prosperous with several successes, but which did not experience the same level of success as the previous ones.
It was not until 1973 and a legendary duet with Johnny that she made a shattering comeback to the forefront with the hugely enormous "J'ai un problème". A new dynamic of success which is confirmed with titles such as "Bye bye Leroy Brown" in 1974, "La drôle de fin" in 1975 but also, and above all, "Qu'est-ce qui pleurer les blondes" in 1976, title which remains undoubtedly one of its most emblematic to this day.
New air hole at the end of the 1970s with only one major success, namely "Nicolas" in 1979.
The turn of the 80s still came without too much pain, at least artistically, and saw the singer keep herself pretty much afloat. Notably thanks to titles like "Tape, tape" in 1980 and "L'amour c'est comme une cigarette" in 1981.
On the private side, the artist's life is slightly more eventful, notably with the divorce from Johnny Hallayday and the meeting with producer Tony Scotti.
New duo of great caliber in 1983 this time with Michel Sardou on the title "La première fois qu'on s'aimera". Title which meets a nice success but which unfortunately marks the beginning of the decline, a slow but irreversible decline.
Indeed, despite the release of several albums in the years that followed, none managed to produce a hit worthy of the name and the singer would be unable to compete with young girls, most of whom were 20 years younger than her ...
With the key to a gradual disappearance of radars for this singer who will remain one of the most outstanding of her generation and who remains today one of the references in the matter of the French musical landscape of the end of the XXth century !
To discover or rediscover.
Discography (among others ...) :
J’aime ta façon de faire ça 1961
Quand le film est triste 1962
Est-ce que tu le sais ? 1962
Baby c’est vous 1962
Les vacances se suivent 1962
Madison twist 1962
Le locomotion 1962
Comme l’été dernier 1962
Tous mes copains 1962
En écoutant la pluie 1963
Il revient 1963
Si je chante 1963
Ne t’en vas pas 1963
Watching you 1963
Twist et chante 1963
La plus belle pour aller danser 1964
Sha la la 1964
L’homme en noir 1964
La vie sans toi 1964
Dans tes bras 1965
Cette lettre là 1965
Quand tu es là 1965
Et pourtant je reste là 1965
C’était trop beau 1965
Il y a 2 filles en moi 1965
Mister John B. 1966
Ballade pour un sourire 1966
Par amour par pitié 1966
2’ 35 de bonheur 1967
Un peu de tendresse 1967
Le kid 1967
Comme un garcon 1967
Baby Capone 1968
La Maritza 1968
On a tous besoin d’un homme 1969
C’est un jour à rester couché 1969
Le roi David 1969
Les hommes qui n’ont plus rien à perdre 1969
Aime moi 1970
J’ai deux mains, j’ai deux pieds, une bouche et puis un nez 1970
Je t’appelle 1971
Parle moi de ta vie 1971
Mon père 1972
J’ai un probleme 1973
Non je ne suis plus la même 1973
La vie c’est du cinéma 1973
L’amour au diapason 1974
Bye bye Leroy Brown 1974
Da dou ron ron 1974
Shang Shang A Lang 1975
La drôle de fin 1975
Danse la chante la 1975
Qu’est-ce qui fait pleurer les blondes ? 1976
L’amour c’est comme les bateaux 1976
Ta sorcière bien aimée 1976
Petit rainbow 1977
Disco queen 1978
Please stay 1979
Tape tape 1980
La chanson au brouillon 1981
L’amour c’est comme une cigarette 1981
Ca va mal 1981
Orient Express 1982
La sortie de secours 1982
La première fois qu’on s’aimera 1983
Danse ta vie 1983
Des heures de désir 1984
Déclare l’amour comme la guerre 1984
Love again 1984
Double exposure 1985
One shot lover 1986
Tu n’as rien compris 1987
Femme sous influence 1987
C’est fatal 1989
Il pleut sur London 1990
Qui tu es 1992
Quelqu’un qui m’ressemble 1995
Je n’aime encore que toi 1996
Toutes les femmes ont un secret 1997
J’aime un homme marié 1999
1961 ... who could imagine in this year 1961 that this little blond girl of Bulgarian origin would become, in a few decades, one of the major singers of the end of the XXth century on the French side. Not many people, that's for sure ...
1962 ... what is certain is that the potential is obvious. But it is clear that the competition sees in her just one more midinette who is trying to break into the industry at all costs. It's damn underestimating her ...
1962 ... after a year 1961 which will have allowed her to make herself known, she goes up a gear in this year 1962. And this revisited version of the track "What I'd said" by Ray Charles dating from 1959 is timely to show the whole of France that we will have to really count on her in the years to come, and above all, the decades to come !
1962 ... the dynamic of success that took hold on the previous title is now gone to last a hell of a lot of time. It's not complicated, for the next 15 years, it's a title released = a top hit almost every time !
1962 ... the year 1962 literally saw her take off. The titles follow one another at an impressive speed and make her the phenomenon of the year. France is completely under the spell ...
1962 ... impossible to stop her in this year 1962. She hardly released a title that another arrives in the tread. The competition had better watch out ...
1962 ... a year 1962 that never ends. This time, she revisits the title "The Loco-Motion" by Little Eva from the same year. Even if the copy is not worth the original, it will once again be successful !
1962 ... decidedly, we only see her in this year 1962. She is in steamroller mode and nothing, and no one, is able to stop her at this stage !
1962 ... come on, a little last to end 1962 in style. She will have literally crushed the competition and marked its territory in an impressive way to say the least
1963 ... we continue in the luxury cover with this time the cover of Tony Sheridan's title "Let's dance" dating from the same year. A resumption still winning !
1963 ... what will have characterized this decade of the Sixties is the incredible number of luxury covers of American titles made by French singers. The young Sylvie will not cut it and will abuse it moreover, the proof once again with this revisited version of the title "Rhythm of the rain" of the Cascades dating from the previous year
1963 ... but she does it so well that it always feels like the song she sings was made especially for her. She takes here from Gene Vincent dating from 1958, a title called "Say mama" and the result is once again up to the task
1963 ... well, at some point, she still have to do something new. Because, on this one, she plays it to us once again with a luxury cover on the title of Cookies "Chains" dating from the previous year. Be careful, because it could end up boring ...
1963 ... and no, the title she interprets here and which will remain as one of her best known is not a novelty either. But well, but once again a cover of an American title. Here she revisits the title "My whole world is falling" by Brenda Lee dating from the same year, a revisited version which further strengthens her status as a phenomenon of the moment !
1963 ... finally something new ? No, unfortunately lost. This time, she revisits Ben Tucker's title "Comin 'homme baby" dating from 1961. Already 6 titles for the year 1963, 6 titles which are only covers, an almost record for an artist !
1963 ... she is so under the influence of the United States that she even manages to push the song with local sizes. And not the least when you see who she sings with !
1963 ... and she continues in luxury covers ! The most famous version of this title will undoubtedly remain that of the Beatles but in truth, this title is to be attributed originally to the Isley Brothers who are the first to interpret it in 1961. This version of Sylvie is certainly nice but will not remain not like the most successful, that's clear ...
1964 ... finally something new ! And not just any novelty, especially when you know that behind this song is a certain...Charles Aznavour ! The pretty Sylvie delivers here quite simply one of the flagship titles of her career, the kind of title that makes One Shot fit into the musical legend of its time. MAS-TER-FUL !
1964 ... a year 1964 which finally rhymes with novelties. Launch his career with an endless stream of covers of all kinds, why not. But at some point, you still have to prove that you can exist on your own ...
1964 ... where the art of doing things with ease. This time, she covers what will become one of the cult titles of this decade at the planetary level, namely the enormous "Oh, pretty woman" by Roy Orbison released the same year. The copy is not really worth the original but at that time the French did not really make the link between the original titles and the copies ...
1965 ... the number of titles released over the past 4 years is considerable. Each year, at least 5, 6, 7 titles come out in single file. A productivity that leaves little space for competition to exist, that's clear ...
1965 ... the whole decade will turn out in much the same way : to her the first places of the hits parades and to the others the places of honor. Particularly frustrating for the competition ...
1965 ... once again she takes down the timpani with a luxury cover. This time, it is the title "Game of love" by Wayne Fontana dating from the same year which will pay the price. Anyway, it works like hell with the public !
1965 ...shet still offers us more and more 'novelties' and we can only be happy about it. Titles with a slightly darker sound and which above all show another side of the singer ...
1965 ... a year 1965 once again plethora in terms of titles. But of the quality like that, who would complain. The young singer is in full possession of her means and it can be heard !
1965 ... a year 1965 which ends as it started, that is to say at the top of the hits parade once again. No need to worry for now, the horizon is perfectly clear !
1966 ... back in luxury cover mode, a long time ago ... This time, she covers the title "Sloop John B.' from the Beach Boys dating from the same year. It's nice again but the copy will not equal the original, that's clear ...
1966 ... after years of recklessness, we feel a semblance of evolution in the singer's register. The pieces play more and more on the register of emotion and the result is pleasing to see. Especially to hear ...
1966 ... the years go by and everything is stable in the Vartan galaxy. It is a success which calls for another success which calls for another success and so on. Everything runs like clockwork as they say !
1967 ... a new duet title which allows the singer to add a new star to her prize list. All in Charleston mode, a really risky bet for the time but a winning bet given the level of success achieved by this title !
1967 ... the change of style is more and more obvious. A salutary development which allows the singer to avoid getting bored but which also allows her to open up new horizons to explore ...
1967 ... she plays more and more on the 'emotional' register but also on the 'light playful' style. Styles that allow her to further establish its supremacy over the rest of the world. All good as they say ...
1967 ... which will undoubtedly remain as one of his most emblematic titles. A year 1968 which saw her reach the Nirvana with this very simple title but with formidable efficiency. Light, fresh, playful, this title has everything to please. And it necessarily pleases. HU-GE !
1968 ... the great adventure continues unabated. Title after title, year after year, she writes her legend a little more every day. A legend that is only in its third ...
1968 ... a decade of the Sixties traversed from start to finish at the top of the poster and to the maximum of its possibilities. She will never have wavered, nor trembled and will not have given any respite to competition ...
1968 ... an exceptional year in all respects which saw her align several of its most emblematic titles. A concentrate of Premium-inspired titles that will undoubtedly make this year one of the major years of her career
1968 ... a year 1968 to say the least incredible and which ends in apotheosis with this title. In just one year, she will have forever marked the hearts of the French and obtained her direct ticket to the French Pantheon of the greatest singers that the country has known. MAS-TER-FUL !
1969 ... even if the year 1969 could not equal the year 1968 as the bar has been set high, the fact remains that the quality level is still among the best of the moment. A decade of 60 that she is not ready to forget !
1969 ... the last year of the decade will not change the situation at all. This decade is hers and nothing, and no one, has been able to oppose her, let alone challenge her supremacy
1969 ... King David, maybe not, but Prince David, yes. Because the undisputed queen, it is she. She will have reigned over the 60s leaving only crumbs to the competition, it remains to be seen whether she will be able to repeat the same feat during the following decade ...
1969 ... new duo but this time in love. Her last notorious success of the decade, a decade which saw her succeed in everything and especially reap glory, honors and fortune. Full box as they say !
1970 ... new decade and above all new success. A new decade which therefore begins under the best auspices and which augurs well for more beautiful things to come ...
1970 ... a Sylvie who switches slowly but surely towards the varietoche. Admittedly, it is popular and it works particularly at the beginning of the decade. Not sure that this will be the case at the end...of the decade
1971 ... what is also certain is that the production of titles will slow down drastically. After a decade of the 60s when it was on average 6 to 7 titles per year, we are going to drop sharply from 2 to 3. A trend that is set to last ...
1971 ... a competition which is picking up the hair of the beast, a Sylvie which decreases in quality, in short, the lights begin to turn red. We suspected that after spending 10 years at the top, she would inevitably weaken at one time or another ...
1972 ... the start of a decade that turned out to be more complicated to manage than expected. The level of success is dropping sharply and the singer will have to pull herself together, that's clear. And as quickly as possible !
1973 ... she will have to wait for this title, and especially this duet with Johnny, to come back in a shattering way to the front of the stage. The couple sign here quite simply one of the most glamorous duets of the end of the 20th century. HU-GE !
1973 ... a winning return on the previous title which allows her to create a new dynamic while she was clearly losing ground. Like what, sometimes, not much is enough to reverse the course of time ...
1973 ... of course, she has risen to the surface but she will never regain the level of success she experienced during the 1960s. Another era, other fashions, other expectations on the part of the public ...
1974 ... the problem is that the quality is always the order but the little extra that made the difference each time has unfortunately disappeared. She now plays at the same level as the competition, a competition that passes her more and more often ...
1974 ... and it is once again a luxury cover that will temporarily put her back in the saddle. This time she covers Jim Croce's "Bad, bad Leroy Brown" from the previous year. And as very often during the sixties, which says luxury cover, says success on the subject !
1974 ... she continues in the luxury covers with this revisited version of the title "Da doo ron ron" of the Crystals dating from 1963. One of the most famous covers is that of Johnny also dating from 1963. Sylvie's version is certainly nice but will not bring much more ...
1975 ... which will go down as one of his most iconic titles of the decade. As soon as she finds the little extra that she has been missing so much for some time, everything changes as if by magic. The proof with this title !
1975 ... you like luxury covers, here is a new one. This time, she covers the Shepstone & Dibbens "Tambourine" dating from the same year. And again, you'd almost think this song was written for her. Oh no ...
1976 ... who would have believed at that time that this song was just a copy...? However, it is the revisited version of the title "Ride the lightning" by John Kongos dating from the previous year that she performs here and which will become one of her most emblematic titles. Surely one of the most successful plagiarisms of the decade !
1976 ... a particularly inspired mid-decade that saw her align big hits with big hits
1976 ... the Disco wave starting to submerge the planet, an adaptation was obviously needed to stick to the latest trends in Dance. It's done with this title ...
1977 ... then, in your opinion, cover or not cover ? And yes, one more, one more ! She covers the title "Summerlove sensation" of the Bay City Rollers dating from 1974 and obtains a new success on a title which, once again, is only a copy. Never has a singer taken so many titles from others. A record...which pays anyway !
1978 ... she fits perfectly with the latest trends of the moment but thank you who, thank you Claudja Barry ! New luxury cover of his track "Johnny Johnny please come home" released the previous year. Sylvie, at some point, you will have to do something new !
1978 ... well, the new one, it will not be for this blow either. She revisits here the title "Substitute" of the Righteous Brothers dating from 1975 and once again obtains the laurels of victory thanks to the others. Not very glorious all that ...
1979 ... a Sylvie in Anglo-Saxon fashion on an original track that works perfectly. Like what, when she wants, she can do new high level !
1979 ... a 70s decade which ended in style with this title which will also remain as one of his most emblematic. A 1970s which did not have the exceptional level of success of the 1960s, but which still saw the singer remain in the leading pack with obvious ease
1980 ... a new decade which starts with...a new cover, this time of Miriam Makéba's title "Pata pata" dating from 1967. Why change a recipe, admittedly inglorious, but which has worked wonderfully for 2 decades ...
1981 ... a nice title but which is light years away from the new musical trends that are on the horizon in this decade of the 80s. She will therefore have to adapt and quickly on pain of purely and simply disappearing ...
1981 ... her biggest hit of the decade. And once again, the song is not her...but pretty Sheena Easton ! A title called "9 to 5" dating from the previous year and which offers this dear Sylvie the last notorious success of her career. Thanks who, thanks Sheena !
1981 ... so, copy or not copy ? Copy of course. She attacks here the title of ABBA "On and on and on" dating from the previous year. Since the time she takes the titles of others, it must be expensive in copyright all that ...
1982 ... finally something new with the surprise arrival of a certain...Didier Barbelivien as a composer. Too bad she didn't call on him sooner but hey, nothing is lost at this stage ...
1982 ... so, we are going to say thank you who on this one ? Thanks José ! Sylvie can thank the Dutch singer for offering her on a set her track "I'm so sorry" from the previous year. The copy is not worth the original but more or less approaches it, it is already that ...
1983 ... no more duets with Johnny, this time it's Michel who sticks to it. Well, in terms of partner, we do worse, that's clear. The duo works very well and offers the 2 protagonists a deserved success
1983 ... the covers which worked out of god's fire during the 60s and the 70s reached their limits in this 80s. We are even beginning to come close to caricature on this revisited version of the title "Flashdance" by Irene Cara released the same year. Be careful when leaving the road ...
1983 ... decidedly, it's the year of duets with Michel Sardou. As the first one worked relatively well, they put the table back. Unfortunately, what worked the first time will not necessarily work so well the second ...
1983 ... we came close to the caricature on the cover of Flasdance but there we are squarely with this cover for the less failed of the flagship title of Eurythmics "Sweet dreams". Times are getting tough for the singer and it's not going to work out ...
1984 ... the festival of the cover continues with this time the cover of the title of Agneta Falstkog (ex ABBA) "Wrap your arms around me", title dating from the previous year. Another cover which will allow her to stay afloat once again. Not sure it will last like this for long ...
1984 ... we find once again the José-Sylvie tandem. José's title will be released under the name "Time goes by", that of Sylvie "Declare love as war". With a head start in terms of quality for the first, it's clear ...
1984 ... a decade definitely under the sign of duets and this time in an English version. It's nice but it will not change the situation unfortunately on the fact that Sylvie is in free fall and that it is not about to stop ...
1985 ... she tries anything and everything. The duets, the covers, singing in English, but unfortunately nothing helps. The young audience sees in her only a singer from the past who is desperately trying to act like young girls who are 20 years younger. Hard law of the trade ...