TESTIMONY. Children, we were choristers for Alain Souchon

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I’m ten years old, Allô Maman, Bobo, Rame or Sentimental Crowd… Alain Souchon has marked all generations during his career. From hits to memorable duets (with Laurent Voulzy, Jane Birkin or her sons Charles and Pierre Souchon), the soundtrack of her life has been rich in memories. Some have also greatly rocked his youth.

In 2011, Alain Souchon published À cause d’elles, an album composed mainly of covers of nursery rhymes. Among the titles were also a new version of I am ten years old, as well as an unreleased one, Le Jour et la Nuit. The opportunity for this big dreamy child to call on a choir of young boys to accompany him on his song.

A decade later, three former singers have agreed to talk about their best memories with Alain Souchon for Planet. Like Hugo, 10 years old at the time, who remembers that the project “was done very quickly. We were warned a bit at the last moment”, says the political science student. After the selection established by their choir director Christian, six children spent the day with Alain Souchon to record the piece at Studios Ferber in Paris.

“Alain Souchon was there when we arrived, to welcome us,” recalls Pierre, one of the lucky six. “We had time to talk with him, sit down and drink before starting the session”. For Le jour et la nuit, they sang a simple melody for the choruses. “We had recorded the voices for a whole afternoon and we were also shooting the clip”, Hugo explains before slipping in an anecdote on the set. “We were disturbed by the agitation of Alain Souchon. We see us laughing because he jumps a little in all directions and it was quite funny”.

For a year, the boys’ choir accompanied Alain Souchon for the promotion of the single on television. Strongly Sunday and Champs Elysées or even La Fête de la chanson française, the title with the haunting chorus was looping on the airwaves. For Martin, “his song had done well. It was great to be able to participate in this project with him”, confides the communication student for Planet. “He was cool and reassuring, he made us jokes to lighten the atmosphere”. Once on stage, the children surrounded him and sang in chorus for the public and the televiewers.

As for Pierre, he remembers their appearance on Michel Drucker’s show on France 2. “It’s great to go to Vivement Dimanche when you’re 12. You know your parents watch that,” said the musician. Unlike Hugo who preferred The Song of the Year with Nikos Aliagas on TF1. “It was impressive because there were stars that we knew”.

From the Ferber studios to television, Alain Souchon has shared many moments with his singers. Behind the scenes, the artist and the children often discussed music. “We went to his dressing room for about ten minutes. We offered him a record of the group and he listened to it with us,” Pierre told Planet.

However, his friend Martin admits to us. “It’s not necessarily the sounds I listen to in French music, but I like the duo he forms with Laurent Voulzy”. Today, the three men in their twenties remain convinced of the talent of the songwriter and performer.

“These are sensible texts that combine a bit of slam and variety. It is quite unique”, observes Hugo. While Pierre salutes “a great figure in French song”. “His music is unique to him. There were no other artists who tried to copy him”. From his youth to his great successes, Laurent Delahousse invites you to discover the life of Alain Souchon this Friday, September 30 in Un jour, un destin, on France 3 at 9:10 p.m., followed by his concert at the Dôme de Paris in the spring of 2022.