Available again: Barbara Thompson (3 albums)

By request:

Barbara Thompson – Songs From The Center Of The Earth (1991)

Barbara Thompson´s Paraphernalia – Nightwatch (Pure Fantasy) (1984 + 1996)

Barbara Thompson´s Paraphernalia – A Cry From The Heart – Live In London (1988)

Let me know, if links are dead, and I will make them available again, please write to:

post-fuer-sammelsurium@gmx.net

Juliette Gréco – Si Tu T’imagines + 2 (1950)

FrontCover1Juliette Gréco (7 February 1927 – 23 September 2020) was a French actress and cabaret singer. She became the iconic figure of the Saint Germain Des Prés music scene in Paris.

Her most famous songs were “Jolie Môme”, “Déshabillez-moi”, and “La Javanaise”. She sang tracks with lyrics written by French poets such as Jacques Prévert and Boris Vian and singers like Jacques Brel and Serge Gainsbourg. Her sixty-year career finished in 2015 when she began her last worlwide tour titled “Merci”.

Juliette Gréco was born in Montpellier to an absent Corsican father, Gérard Gréco, and a mother from Bordeaux, Juliette Lafeychine (1899-1978). Her lineage hails in part from Greece. She did not receive any love from her mother in her childhood and suffered from her harsh comments due to being an unwanted child, such as “You ain’t my daughter. You’re Juliette Gréco06the child of rape”. She was raised by her maternal grandparents in Bordeaux with her older sister Charlotte. After the death of her grandparents, her mother took her two daughters back to come live with her in Paris. In 1938, she became a ballerina at the Opéra Garnier.

When World War II began, the family returned to the southwest of France. Gréco was a student at the Institut Royal d’éducation Sainte Jeanne d’Arc in Montauban. The Gréco family became active in the Résistance and her mother was arrested at their home in 1943. The two sisters decided then to move back to Paris but they were captured and tortured by the Gestapo before being imprisoned at the Fresnes Prison in September 1943. Her mother and sister were deported to a concentration camp in Ravensbrück while Juliette, being only 16 at the time, remained in prison for several months before being released. All alone after her release from prison, she walked the eight miles back to Paris to get her belongings back at the Gestapo headquarters. Her former French teacher and her mother’s friend, Hélène Duc, decided to take care of her.

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In 1945, Gréco’s mother and sister returned from deportation after the liberation of Ravensbrück by the Red Army. Gréco moved to Saint-Germain-des-Prés in 1945 after her mother moved to Indochina, leaving Gréco and her sister behind.

Gréco became a devotee of the bohemian fashion of some intellectuals of post-war France. Duc sent her to attend acting classes given by Solange Sicard. She made her debut in the play Victor ou les Enfants au pouvoir in November 1946 and began to host a radio show dedicated to poetry.

Her friend Jean-Paul Sartre installed her at the Hotel La Louisiane and famously said that she had “millions of poems in her voice”. She was known to many of the writers and artists working in Saint-Germain-des-Prés, such as Albert Camus, Jacques Prévert and Boris Vian, thus gaining the nickname la Muse de l’existentialisme.

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Gréco spent the post-Liberation years frequenting the Saint-Germain-des-Prés cafes, immersing herself in political and philosophical bohemian culture. As a regular figure at music and poetry venues like Le Tabou on Rue Dauphine, she was acquainted with Jean Cocteau, and was given a role in Cocteau’s film Orphée (1950).

In 1949, she began an affair with U.S. jazzman Miles Davis. In 1957, they decided to always be just lovers because of their careers happening in different countries and his fear of tarnishing her reputation by being in an interracial relationship. They remained lovers and friends until his death in 1991.

In 1949, she also made her debut as a cabaret singer in the Parisian cabaret Le Boeuf sur le toit, performing the lyrics of a number of well-known French writers; Raymond Queneau’s “Si tu t’imagines” was one of her earliest songs to become popular.

Gréco was married three times:

to actor Philippe Lemaire (1953–1956)
actor Michel Piccoli (1966–1977)
pianist Gérard Jouannest (1988 till his death in 2018)

With Lemaire, she had a daughter, Laurence-Marie, born in 1954. Laurence-Marie Lemaire died from cancer in 2016 aged 62.

In the year leading up to his death in the late 1940s, Gréco was the lover of married racing driver Jean-Pierre Wimille and she suffered a miscarriage after his death.

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According to Spanish writer Manuel Vicent, Juliette Gréco was Albert Camus’s lover. She also was in relationships with French singer Sacha Distel and Hollywood producer Darryl F. Zanuck.

During her affair with Miles Davis, she was at one point also dating U.S. record producer Quincy Jones. According to Jones’ autobiography, Davis was irritated with him for years when he later found that out.

Gréco had three rhinoplasties; in Paris in 1953 and 1956, and in London in 1960.

In September 1965, Gréco attempted suicide by an overdose of sleeping pills. She was found unconscious in her bathroom and taken to the hospital by Françoise Sagan.

Gréco lived between Paris and Saint-Tropez, in the south of France.

Juliette Gréco03A leftist, she supported François Mitterrand in the 1974 presidential election, and was an initial investor in Minute, when it was mainly non-political and focused on the entertainment world.

Gréco died on 23 September 2020 at the age of 93.[23][24]

The “Juliette Gréco” rose at the Roseraie de Bagatelle

Gréco was portrayed by actress Anna Mouglalis in the film Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life (2010).

Jean-Paul Sartre based the singer in his trilogy The Roads to Freedom (Les chemins de la liberté) on Gréco.

An allusion to Gréco is made by English singer Ray Davies in the song “Art School Babe” from his album Storyteller.

“Michelle” by the Beatles was inspired by Gréco and the Parisian Left Bank culture. Paul McCartney said of the song, “We’d tag along to these parties, and it was at the time of people like Juliette Greco, the French bohemian thing. They’d all wear black turtleneck sweaters, it’s kind of where we got all that from, and we fancied Juliette like mad. Have you ever seen her? Dark hair, real chanteuse, really happening. So I used to pretend to be French, and I had this song that turned out later to be ‘Michelle’.”

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John Lennon wrote in Skywriting by Word of Mouth, “I’d always had a fantasy about a woman who would be a beautiful, intelligent, dark-haired, high-cheek-boned, free-spirited artist à la Juliette Gréco.”

Marianne Faithfull said of Gréco, “When I was a young girl, Juliette Gréco was my absolute idol… She’s my role model for life. If I want to be anybody, I want to be Juliette Gréco”.[28]

In 1999, a rose was named after her by Georges Delbard under the name of “Juliette Gréco”. (wikipedia)

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And here´s her first single from 1950 … what a wonderful start in a brilliant career … full of ups and downs..

She was the muse to the Parisian literary scene of the ’50s, godmother of songwriter-led ’60s French pop, and a self-reinventing torch singer from the ’70s until now, Juliette Gréco is one of the great French recording artists of the 20th century.

I include an obituary from the BBC.

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Personnel:
Juliette Gréco (vocals)
+
Pierre Arimi Orchestra

Rare CD-EP: Available commercially exclusively as a bonus disc inside box Juliette Gréco – L’Éternel Féminin, used separately only as promo
CDFront+BackCover

Tracklist:
01. Si Tu T’imagines (Kosma/Queneau) 3.10
02. La Fourmi (Kosma/Desnos) 1.23
03. Rue Des Blancs Manteaux (Sartre/Kosma) 1.53

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The “Juliette Gréco” rose at the Roseraie de Bagatelle:
Juliette GrécoRose