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Today, Third Man Records is excited to release reissues of three classic albums by prolific French vocalist France Gall, marking the first North American vinyl pressings of all three albums. Baby Pop, 1968 and Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son are available in stores now. Limited-edition colored vinyl variants are available in indie stores and TMR storefronts -- Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son in opaque green, Baby Pop in opaque orange, and 1968 in opaque blue. Third Man will also host a series of dance parties tonight in select cities, where DJs will spin yé-yé (the style of music for which Gall is known) and French psych. Limited-edition colored pressings of the reissues will be available at the events. See below for the list of parties, and purchase Baby Pop, 1968 and Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son.
France Gall was a prolific French vocalist and performer, remembered as one of the central figures of the 1960s yé-yé pop movement. Aligning catchy, spirited rhythms with lighthearted lyrics and drawing from the beat music a la early Beatles and Hollies, the yé-yé artists promoted a sort of new freedom of expression and breaking down of social barriers in post-WWII France.
Third Man Records is beyond honored to bring this music to a larger audience by issuing the first authorized North American vinyl pressings of these titles, some of the most brilliant highlights from Gall’s catalog, including Baby Pop, 1968, and Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son.
Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son
While France Gall had been releasing music since she was 16, it wasn’t until she took the Grand Prix at the 1965 Eurovision Song Contest with her rendition of Serge Gainsbourg’s “Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son” that she would be catapulted to the top of the swinging yé-yé scene alongside the likes of Francoise Hardy, Sylvie Vartan and Bridgette Bardot. This record contains two of France’s most loved tracks, “Poupée de Cire” and “Laisse Tomber Les Filles” also penned by Gainsbourg. She recorded versions of the title track in French, German, Italian and Japanese and was now an international pop superstar. At the time France was dismissed by many as making fluffy ultra commercial pop hits but her music stands the test of time far better than most, as not many were making music of this consistent high quality.
Baby Pop is not only an important album for France herself, it is also a hugely important record for the entire yé-yé scene. Baby Pop hinted at the musical direction that yé-yé was headed in much the same way Revolver and Pet Sounds did in the UK and USA. Baby Pop is more mature and varied than her earlier more bubblegum releases. You will still find a wonderfully cheesy tracks like “L’Amerique” here and there but with the impossibly infectious title track and songs like the Gainsbourg-penned “Nous Ne Sommes Va-T’en” and the groovy Farfissa driven “Faut-Il que Je T’Aime” we welcome a new France Gall and say hello to some of the finest pop music ever released in French or any language.
Without a doubt this is the weirdest France Gall record. 1968 dives further into the psychedelia that she was hinting at on Baby Pop. Even with the addition of sitars and echoes of The Beatles, The Stones, The Kinks and Pet Sounds era Beach Boys all over this record it is still 100% French and could only have been made by France Gall. The addition of English expat producer/arranger, David Whitaker, brought a new and welcome airiness to the mix that was lacking on Gall’s earlier recordings. The album contains 2 of Serge Gainsbourg’s strangest and most out there arrangements, “Nefertiti” and “Teenie Weenie Boppie” about an LSD trip gone horribly wrong. 1968 is an absolutely essential addition to any record collection.
France Gall release day parties (February 21):
UFO Factory - Detroit, MI
Vinyl Tap - Nashville, TN
1606 Cahuenga Vinyl Bar - Los Angeles, CA
TV Eye - New York, NY
Aux 33 - Montreal, QC