Wednesday 10 October 2012

Oh Guitare Guitare

BK1 has taken up guitar lessons at school. The BabelDad is being all posh: "guitar players are so tacky! they sit around the fire and strum on their guitars to get the girls". He is unswerving, even when reminded that our own respective fathers play the guitar.

To counteract BK1's enthusiasm for the proletarian instrument, the BabelDad has splashed on a second-hand electronic piano, which apparently used to belong to Peter Gabriel; he even composed Sledge Hammer on it. Yeah right.

So, for the last week, we have been listening to Oh Guitare, Guitare by Enrico Macias. BK1 was intrigued by some unfamiliar words, reminding me how powerful songs can for learning a language:
Si j'ai mis dans ton coeur andalou
trop de soupirs à ton goût
chasse au loin tes sanglots superflus
This takes me back some thirty years ago; my parents have a collection of Enrico Macias' vinyls, and my dad often strums Enrico's songs on his guitar. Incidentally, I can't help being touched by Enrico's complex identity, a topic for another day...

The girls seemingly enjoy the oriental rhythms and catchy lines of Macias' music. They particularly like Les Filles de Mon Pays. I have told them that they are themselves some of Les Filles Enrico praises. After all, he is originally from Algeria, and they are Algerian too.

BK2's favourite bit of the live version of Les Filles de Mon Pays is a surprising verse at the end of the song... in Kabyle!

Sharing the music of my childhood with my own children gives me so much joy!

1 comment:

  1. Algerian/french identity! So fascinating, yes, and complex. Hope you can explore that a bit soon! Thanks for sharing!
    I have a children's bilingual book project that I think you may be interested it. I am looking for a way to email you, but can't seem to find it :( Can you email me? 2melissa.c (at)
    Keep up the fun blogging!
    Hope you hear from you soon!


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