Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Y = Yé-yé Music, French Faves, or Not - A to Z Blog Challenge

French Pop Music in the 1960s. . .

Amazon Image - limited edition Album

Y = Yé-yé

Yé-yé was a style of pop music that became popular in France, Italy and Spain in the early 1960s. The term Yé-yé was derived from the English term "yeah! yeah!" popularized by the British Beat music bands such as the Beatles. The style expanded worldwide for a time to a specific audience.

Yé-yé Gets Around

Yé-yé music remained a mostly European phenomenon featuring young female singers. Although the Yé-yé movement was led by female singers, it was not an exclusively female movement. Ages 16-17 was the average age for performers.

As for Yé-yé girls, Sylvie Vartan, a glamorous young singer, married the rock star, Johnny Hallyday in 1965. They toured in the USA and Asia, but several years later, she was still singing girly-girl songs. Hm-mm.

Early French artists dabbling in Rock n' Roll and similar genres such as Johnny Hallyday admit that they were creating an imitation of English language Rock n' Roll, and yé-yé music helped assimilate that music in a unique, French way. Johnny Hallyday was an icon in the French speaking world from the beginning in the early 60s, and has been called the French Elvis. . .

Yé-yé style songs were trendy for a while, then faded away as times moved on. Then, in 2012 in the USA, French-Canadian actress Jessica Paré performed a cover of "Zou Bisou Bisou" (a yé-yé song) in the tv series, Mad Men, a popular show in its fifth season at that time.


NOTE: This is not a favourite style of music of mine, but it is a 'Y' subject with a few interesting details. I prefer my French music flavoured by Stephane Grappelli, Django Reinhardt, or Edith Piaf. In fact, I only learned about this novelty music during research for the A to Z Challenge.


Have you ever heard of Yé-yé music? Do you like girl groups or pop music in this style? Did you watch Mad Men in 2012 and do you remember hearing such a song?

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The A to Z Blog Challenge is brainchild of Lee, at Tossing It Out.  Please visit the A to Z blog site to find out more information and the participant list.  There are also Twitter and Facebook presences if you want to check those!



Yé-yé Music

Johnny Hallyday