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Tuesday 8 January 2013

Le Nashville Sound

We continue our impromptu continental tour today. After visiting Germany and Slovakia, we stop off in France, but only long enough to bundle Johnny Hallyday onto a plane bound for Nashville.

That's right. Johnny Hallyday, the man often referred to as the French Shakin' Stevens - I am sure you all remember his seasonal smash "Joyeux Noel, Tout Le Monde". In 1975 Johnny went to Nashville where he teamed up with the great Shelby Singleton to produce the album "Le Terre Promise" (The Promised Land). Incidentally, if you are not familiar with Shelby Singleton, this obituary gives you some idea of his contribution. He was a man worth knowing.

I don't think I could in all honesty call "Le Terre Promise" a great album, but it is a lot of fun. As you would expect there is a fair amount of country on there, including a nice French version of "Help Me Make It Through The Night" ("Reste Avec Moi Cette Nuit"). But Johnny is le rocker at heart, as he shows on these renditions of a pair of Elvis and Buddy Holly standards.

"Promesses" - Johnny Hallyday

"C'Est Bon" - Johnny Hallyday

We have a couple of bonus tracks for you today. The first is another cover of the same Buddy Holly song, this time in the English folk style. The second is a belated tribute to the late Fontella Bass. This is in response to a request from our old friend Mr Jackson. When I asked which track he wanted, he replied "I'm leaving the choice to you". So that's what he is getting.

"Rave On" - Steeleye Span

"I'm Leaving The Choice To You" - Fontella Bass

And, if you can get past Cher's ludicruous look, here is a surprisingly good cover of that - not a patch on Fontella and Bobby though.

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