Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Baby pop.


France Gall performs "Baby Pop" in the official music video.  

I just saw the film "Gainsbourg" (2010) finally, and while I don't know how it would be perceived to a Serge Gainsbourg super fan, I personally, as a more causal Serge fan, thought the film was fantastic and left the theatre planning to pick up a Serge bio soon to fill in the gaps of the many illustrious details the biopic left out.  For less informed Serge fans, I think this biopic, while beautifully done, is less clear on the significance of certain events in his life and not so detailed that you get an in-depth understanding of his timeline.   Its a super moving, glamourous, and inspiring film though.  If you need a little classic rockstar glamour in your life, this would be a great biopic to view on a lazy Friday night.

One memorable moment of the film was Gainsbourg's interaction with teen pop sweetie France Gall and her performance of Baby Pop for him and her dollar-sign seeing daddy/ "Dad-ager".   Gainsbourg subtly wanted to challenger her to break out of her squeeky-clean kiddie role and rebel a bit more.  I never took the time to listen to "Baby Pop" when I had heard it before, and my French abilities are super basic so I have to really study to understand.   On the surface it seems like a typical teen hit full of fluffy and soda fizz, but after seeing the film, I wondered what were the lyrics Gainsbourg had written for Gall.   I was surprised they are so dark, and really encompass that sense of social change, youth movement, and distrust of authority in the context.  Its actually a shockingly dark and powerful song slicked over with a joie-de-vivre, live for the moment happiness.

Here's a bit from wikipedia on "Baby Pop":

At the beginning of 1966 Gall released Baby pop, another song written by Gainsbourg, the lyrics of which Gall once described as "brutal", but whose dark undertones are not easily perceived when one hears the song as sung by the then 18 year-old girl. However, the undertones in her next hit song were not so easily missed, and caused a scandal when it was released. Gainsbourg deliberately filled the song Les Sucettes ("Lollipops") with double-meanings and strong sexual innuendo. On the surface, the lyrics tell the innocent tale of a girl named Annie who enjoys lollipops. However, it is clear that Gainsbourg intentionally created the theme as a metaphor for oral sex. Although a big hit, the song sat in stark contrast to genuinely innocent songs on the same album such as Je me marie en blanc ("White Wedding") and Ça me fait rire ("It makes me laugh").


Baby Pop Lyrics in French:

Les quelques sous que tu vas gagner
Faudra pour ça durement travailler
Te lever aux aurores
Automne comme été
Tu auras beau économiser
Tu ne pourras rien mettre de côté
Et là-dessus encore
Heureuse si tu peux
Aller danser

Chante, danse Baby pop
Comme si demain Baby pop
Ne devais jamais Baby pop
Jamais revenir
Chante, danse Baby pop
Comme si demain Baby pop
Au petit matin Baby pop
Tu devais mourir

Sur l'amour tu te fais des idées
Un jour ou l'autre c'est obligé
Tu seras une pauvre gosse
Seule et abandonnée
Tu finiras par te marier
Peut-être même contre ton gré
À la nuit de tes noces
Il sera trop tard pour
Le regretter

Chante, danse Baby pop
Comme si demain Baby pop
Ne devais jamais Baby pop
Jamais revenir
Chante, danse Baby pop
Comme si demain Baby pop
Au petit matin Baby pop
Tu devais mourir

Tu ne peux ignorer les dangers
Que représentent les libertés
Les menaces de guerre
Semblent se préciser
À cet instant Baby tu le sais
Où tous les soleils vont se lever
Quelque part sur la terre
Les balles sifflent
Le sang est versé

Chante, danse Baby pop
Comme si demain Baby pop
Ne devais jamais Baby pop
Jamais revenir
Chante, danse Baby pop
Comme si demain Baby pop
Au petit matin Baby pop
Tu devais mourir


Excuse the poor English translation... I welcome any improved translations!

The few pennies you'll earn
You will work hard for
Get up at dawn
Autumn and summer
You will scrimp and save
But you will not put anything aside
And yet
Be happy if you can
dancing

Sing, dance,  Baby Pop
As if tomorrow, Baby Pop
Will never, Baby Pop
never return
Sing, dance, Baby Pop
As if tomorrow, Baby Pop
In the early morning, Baby Pop
You will die

Based on love you make your ideas,
But one day or another it is required,
You will be a poor kid
Alone and abandoned
You will end up getting married
Maybe even against your will
On the night of your wedding
It will be too late to
regret

Sing, dance,  Baby Pop
As if tomorrow, Baby Pop
Will never, Baby Pop
never return
Sing, dance, Baby Pop
As if tomorrow, Baby Pop
In the early morning, Baby Pop
You will die

You can not ignore the dangers
That represent the freedoms
The threat of war
Seem to indicate
In this instant, Baby, you know
Where all the suns will rise
Somewhere on earth
Bullets fly
The blood is poured

Sing, dance,  Baby Pop
As if tomorrow, Baby Pop
Will never, Baby Pop
never return
Sing, dance, Baby Pop
As if tomorrow, Baby Pop
In the early morning, Baby Pop
You will die

1 comments:

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