Saturday, 24 April 2010

J'ai rendez-vous avec vous -disregarding all else in the first flush of love



This lively song, which is often sung with audience participation, tells of a young man’s all absorbing love for his passionate girl-friend. 

During an interview that took place in the later years of his life, Brassens placed this song as the first of the numerous songs that were inspired by his love of Joha Heiman, his lifelong companion, for whom his affectionate name was “Püppchen”, his little doll. In this interview he quotes, in reference to her, the lines: “ La lumière que je préfère, C'est celle de vos yeux jaloux ». The rest of the poem suggests more explicitly that the start of their relationship was very passionate, in contrast with his complaints in later songs of his sexual deprivation.



A feature of the performance of this song is the gliding of the vowels that I have marked sometimes with a hyphen



Monseigneur l’astre solaire,
Comm’ je n’ l’admir’ pas beaucoup, (1)
M’enlèv’ son feu, oui mais, d’ son feu, moi j’m’en fous,
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !
La lumièr’ que je préfère,
C’est cell’ de vos yeux jaloux,
Tout le restant m’indiffère,
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !

Monsieur mon propriétaire,
Comm’ je lui dévaste tout,
M’ chass’ de son toit, oui mais, d’ son toit, moi j'm’en fous
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !
La demeur’ que je préfère,
C’est votre robe à froufrous (2),
Tout le restant m’indiffère,
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !

Madame ma gargotière,(3)
Comm’ je lui dois trop de sous,
M’ chass’ de sa tabl’, oui mais, d’ sa tabl’, moi j’m’en fous,
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !
Le menu que je préfère,
C’est la chair de votre cou,(4)
Tout le restant m’indiffère,
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !

Sa Majesté financière,
Comm’ je n’ fais rien à son goût,
Garde son or, or, de son or, moi j’m’en fous,(5)
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !
La fortun’ que je préfère,

C’est votre cœur d’amadou,(6)
Tout le restant m’indiffère,
J’ai rendez-vous avec vous !


1954 - Les amoureux des bancs publics.
Monseigneur the sun in the sky
As I don’t admire him too much,
Removes his light, yes, but he can beggar his light
My rendez-vous is with you.
The light- that I prefer-re,
Is what your jealous eyes endue
For all the rest I do not care-re
My rendez-vous is with you.

The gent who owns my pied d’ terre-
As I mess up all of his place
Is kicking me out, yes, but –can beggar his place
My rendez-vous is with you.
The dwelling that I prefer- e
It’s your dress of froufrous
For all the rest I just do’nt care-e
My rendez-vous is with you.


Madame, my dodgy grub server
As I owe her too many sous,
Drives me from her table, yes, but beggar her table
My rendez-vous is with you.
The menu that I prefer-e,
Is your flesh meant for my kiss(4)
For all the rest I don’t care-e
My rendez-vous is with you.

His Highness my finance guru
As I do nothing he approves
Holds back his cash, but he can beggar his cash
My rendez-vous is with you!
The fortune that I prefer- e
Is your heart made of amadou
I’m left cold  by all of the rest
My rendez-vous is with you.





TRANSLATION NOTES

1) L’astre solaire is the sun and Brassens on a number of occasions expressed his exasperation with a climate where there were too many sunny days.

2) The dictionary says froufrous are showy or frilly ornamentation on a dress

3) La gargotière – Masc – le gargotier. Larousse tells us that this is a person who runs « une gargote », which is a small cheap restaurant.

4)"Cou" of course means "neck". More precisely, Larousse tells us that it means the part of the body that joins the head to the body. The French have the phrase "se jeter au cou de quelq'un" which is to greet some-one with a passionate embrace. I was unhappy with the image in English of "flesh of the neck" and I am making the sense more general..

5) Brassens seems to have written this line mainly because it amused him to have three « ors » in one line. The second “or” is the conjunction which means “now” not in a sense of time but holding a story together- eg: “There was once a very rich king, now this king had three daughters…….”

6) The other word for amadou is torchwood. It is a vegetable substance which in the olden days was used to light a fire or a lamp. Sparks were dropped onto the torchwood on which you then blew on to start a flame. The lady to whom the song was dedicated was apparently quickly stirred to passion.



Please click here to return to the alphabetical  list of my Brassens selection

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Merci beaucoup pour votre site magnifique!!

Your footnotes are brilliant. Your explanations of the intricasies of the text of le Grand Georges have done so much to enhance my enjoyment. Bravo!!

Anonymous said...

It's that y'r jealous eyes endue

I don't understand the word ENDUE
What does it mean ?

David-Barfield said...

the meaning of endue.

I used an obscure word to get the line length that I wanted - not very worthy of me!
I am copying from the online dictionary the definition of the word "endue"
en•due
1. To provide with a quality or trait; endow: "A being whom I myself had formed, and endued with life, had met me at midnight among the precipices of an inaccesible mountain" (Mary Shelley).

2. To put on (a piece of clothing).