Claude Francois - Non-extinguishing Star of the French Stage
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Claude Francois – Non-extinguishing Star of the French Stage

“Live from” OLYMPIA! “Only the best songs performed by the unique Claude Francois!” French radio listeners first heard this name in the early 60s of the last century. Since then, you can always find a radio station on the air that broadcasts the song “Comme d’habitude”, which means “As usual” in French.

The path from the bank to the orchestra
February 1, 1939 in Ismailia, in the north-east of Egypt, in the family of the ship dispatcher Aime Francois was born son Claude. In a cozy house on the shores of the Red Sea, Claude and his sister, Josette, spent their happy serene childhood.

Claude’s father was far from the world of music and never approved his son’s passion for music. But the mother, Lucia, was very musical. When Claude was still a child, she taught him to play the violin and piano. At the same time in childhood there was also a fascination with percussion instruments. It is these musical lessons with the mother will be a precious experience that will lead Claude Francois into the world of show business.

In 1956 there was a Suez crisis caused by changes in the policies of Egypt, when the Suez Canal was nationalized. The family was forced to move to Monte Carlo, and the usual measured life remained in the past. The father never reconciled with this forced relocation. Soon he became very sick and could not work anymore. Claude’s shoulders were responsible for the family’s financial well-being, so he got a job as a bank clerk. But this work has always been viewed as temporary. There was not a day for Claude not to dream of leaving the bank and start making music. After a hard day at the bank, he went in search of a job in orchestras playing for the guests of Monaco hotels. Claude was ambitious and enterprising, had a good musical education, so in the end he was accepted into the Louis Frozio orchestra. Claude was happy, though he did not receive any approval or support from his father. He was determined and did not want to accept the fact that his son chose a “not serious” profession. In vain Claude tried to convince his father. After another quarrel, they stopped communicating until the time of his death.

The first “success” of Claude Francois
Not finding support from his father, receiving a meager salary, Claude nevertheless was determined. He worked hard, singer Claude Françoastroy musical career, and was always sure that in the future his name would become loud in the world of music. Claude Francois dreamed of singing and tried to get audition. Not having received such an opportunity in the orchestra where he worked, the ambitious young man left this job. After a while, he was listened to at the Provencal hotel at the luxurious Mediterranean resort of Juan-les-Pins. The guide was fascinated by his sonorous voice and sentimental songs, although they were performed somewhat unprofessionally. He was allowed to sing. And always a neat, well-groomed appearance, blond hair with impeccable styling, and the image of a young man from a good family helped to find mutual understanding with the audience. For the first time, fame comes to Claude, and the number of his fans is constantly growing every day.

The career of a nightclub singer is no longer satisfying Claude. World fame beckons him, but first the singer decided to conquer Paris. At the end of 1961, he and his family moved to the capital. At this time in the musical world there were big changes – American rock and roll broke into French pop music. Twist and jive were at their peak of popularity, Ye-Yeh’s rock-and-roll style was formed. The cult youth program was “Hello, friends”, where the famous world-wide hits, twists and other works of new styles were performed in French. The young singer was going to find his niche in this environment. At first, he joined the Olivier Despax Les Gamblers group. He was paid a penny, but this is not the main thing, the main thing – success. Ambitious Claude understands solo career – the only path to fame. He possessed a kind of talent to feel where you need to direct forces. But, nevertheless, the first record “Nabout twist”, recorded in 1962 under the pseudonym Koko, became a loud failure!

With no doubt
After the first failure, Claude was not going to give up. With even more zeal, he strives for success. More ready to do to achieve fame. singer Claude FrancoisThe song “Belles belles belles” becomes the starting point for Claude Francois’s giddy career. His father never believed in the success of his son, and so it happened, Aime did not live to see this success. He died a few months before the release of the first hit of his son. When the song of Claude Francois sounded in the program “Hello, friends,” everyone was forced to recognize in him a rising star. “Belles belles belles” – reversed to the French “Made To Love” by Everly Brothers – occupied the top of the charts in the summer of 1962. Under the leadership of the impresario Paul Lederman, Claude began a real singer career. The first time he releases songs on the plates of more famous singers and goes as a “warm-up” on tour with “Le Shosssett Noir.”

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