WE WERE THERE –The three artists took part in an event concert in Paris on Thursday, December 17, without an audience but with a handful of lucky people.
The instructions were strict: no one other than those constituting the France Inter teams, the artists’ entourage and their rare guests was allowed to enter La Cigale to attend the unfolding of the triple concert offered by the radio at the end of this event. year 2020. It is therefore in front of an audience of only thirty people that Alain Souchon, Benjamin Biolay and Catherine Ringer performed with their respective accompanists.
Flanked by two guitarists – one of them being none other than his son and close collaborator Pierre – and a keyboard, Alain Souchon began his performance with a mask on his face, almost forgetting to remove it before sing. Lively, as he presents himself, the indestructible and precious author of so many classics of the French repertoire of the last forty years, started with Jealous of the sun, a brand new song.
Impossible not to applaud
Tired of streaming concerts, lacking real concerts, we are quickly overcome with emotion, in this so familiar room that we had never seen so empty, if not to attend final pre-show adjustments. Sometimes for scene disassembly too. The cozy atmosphere is that of an ultra-professional rehearsal, without any particular jitters. The sound resonates with majesty in this room which can accommodate a little less than a thousand people in normal times. Here most of the rows are empty, the few others sparse, in strict compliance with sanitary measures. Everyone has kept their mask, but no one can resolve not to applaud, contrary to the instructions. Impossible to keep your hands in your pockets for what is the first concert in several months of most of the lucky ones present.
Alain Souchon, mischievous, connects the songs, in particular The kiss, one of his most beautiful, Life has no value and A sloping ground, taken from his last album, Soul Fifties. He is not stingy in anecdotes, recalling how the situation reminds him of his beginnings, when his first record company rented marquees in the context of radio shows, which remained hopelessly empty. He then welcomes Benjamin Biolay, proud and moved to give the reply to one of his masters on the switchboard Sentimental Crowd, which takes on a particular resonance in the context of the Covid and the closure of theaters. “You have to see how we are spoken to” indeed.
“There are always more of you than in my room”
Crowned with the double triumph (public and artistic) of his Grand Prize, which comes out in an augmented version, Benjamin Biolay admits that he does not have as many good anecdotes to tell as his eldest, but his physical commitment on the boards of La Cigale more than compensates. Where has the tenderness gone? and The superb are delivered foot to the ground by an impeccable group, the same maneuvering on the album. Biolay enjoys the quiet applause of the small assembly, ensuring: “There are always more of you than in my room”. His guest, the singer Adé, of the late Therapy Taxi, performs with him Closed park and The good life by Sacha Distel, happily fucked up. Like a stolen car, and its end in the shape of an uncontrolled skidding, then Kites, to which its author has stuck the melody of an extract from the last Strokes album complete the set of a Biolay visibly happy to do his job.
Read also :Benjamin Biolay, live against all odds
Catherine Ringer’s lesson
Of the profession, Catherine Ringer has plenty to spare, who gives a lesson from the introduction of Stories of A, which opens a concert dedicated to the repertoire of his group, Rita Mitsouko. Marcia Baila, There is hatred or the rarest Jealousy passions unleash, served by an orchestra in funk rock colors and impressive set-up. A superlative singer, La Ringer has lived on the stage like the popular diva she has been since the early 1980s. After the moving Even if, and one It’s like that anthology, she presents her musicians, including her son Raoul Chichin, and quotes Fred Chichin, composer and arranger of songs “Even if he’s not there.” From guitarists’ heaven, this devil of a musician can be proud of the way his muse takes care of the repertoire they’ve crafted together.
Concert to listen to again on the France Inter website