Anyone interested in music produced in France over the past 50 years should have a deep look into the work of producer / engineer / mixer / musician Dominique Blanc-Francard, nicknamed DBF. Getting an early start in the business in 1970 in the legendary Chateau de Herouville studios, recording the likes of Pink Floyd, Elton John, David Bowie, Cat Stevens and T.Rex, he quickly established himself as a succesful freelance engineer, and went on to work on much of the most classic and iconic music of the past 5 decades. I’ve been lucky enough to work with Dominique on several projects in his state of the art Labomatic Studios, and each time has been a precious learning experience. I’m currently thoroughly enjoying reading his memoirs “It’s a Teenager Dream”, and I would recommend it to anyone. I hope it will be translated into English someday, the content here is definitely of interest to many people way beyond the French language sphere. You can get it here.
My old friend Jens, the great Danish drummer who is to blame for the fact that I’ve been in France close to 20 years now, has developed a great app for drummers. It’s a creative, fun, music-minus-one metronome that you can personalise to your liking in a variety of styles. Very good stuff, check it out here!
Beautiful video for this song from Imany’s latest record, shot in the old Palais de Justice in Dakar. I was quite involved in the playing and arranging on this one, so it was wonderful to discover these beautiful images accompany the song. The dancer Lil Buck is beyond talented, and I’m very proud of Imany, Malick N’Diaye and the Think Zik label, they’ve come a long way and are living proof that hard work and strong values pay off.
Incredible portrait of one of the the strongest and most soulful songwriters ever. The documentary is jam-packed with profound insights into this unique man, his background and why he hasn’t released any music or played any concerts since 1985.
Very happy and proud to be joining Camille for her tour this year and probably a good chunk of 2018 as well. I’ve been a fan of her for years, I think she makes some of the most original and beautiful music in France, and she is a vocalist from out of this world, both technically and emotionally. I also have enormous respect for Clement Ducol and his beautiful arrangements who grace the previous album and the upcoming one, which is out in June. Below you can listen to a few previews. Tour dates are here.
Here’s a throwback to 2009 when we played the Stade de France in Paris with Johnny Hallyday. 240.000 people came out to the three sold out shows – this was in proportions way beyond anything I’d tried before, and I doubt that I’ll ever get to see these kinds of crowds again. We played in front of a million people at the Eiffel Tower on Bastille day – nobody gets to play in front of a million people! So I cherish this unique memory, as strange as it was. I didn’t grow up with these songs, so they don’t trigger the same nostalgic feeling in me as they do in people from France – much like I discovered the songs of Louise Attaque or Jean-Louis Aubert in front of huge, nostalgic crowds. It’s a true privilege to get to catch up with French popular culture this way!
Johnny is one hell of a singer, can’t argue with that, and I enjoyed playing with this great band a lot.