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Friday, 8 March 2013

Friday's French music break - Vigon Bamy Jay, "Feelings"

Take a couple of old geezers who've both had long careers but not ones that have seen them hit the headlines perhaps as much as they deserved, mix together with a former member of a now defunct television talent show winning group and allow them to sing one of the most excruciatingly sentimental songs ever and welcome to Friday's French music break, "Feelings".

The trio currently wooing French airwaves with their rendition of the song are
Vigon Bamy Jay.

Vigon (right) Bamy (left) Jay (seated) - screenshot from official video

It's the first track to be released from their album "Les Soul men" and most definitely rates high on the barf value: not so much for their talent - which all three undeniably have - but more for the choice of a song which over the years has surely come to symbolise schmaltz.

Vigon (Abdelghafour Mouhsine) is a Moroccan rhythm and blues singer who came to the wider public's attention in 2012 during the first edition of The Voice.

The sprightly 67-year-old has a long musical pedigree as does another member of the trio  Gaudeloupe-born Érick Bamy -  another singer in his 60s.

Bamy, a former backing singer to Johnny Hallyday, had his "big break" in another television programme last year, the French version of the "Got talent" show imaginatively entitled "La France a un incroyable talent".
And it was yet another talent show which launched the career of the third member of the trio, Jay Kani.

He was a member of the R'n'B group Poetic Lover which won "Graines de star" back in 1997, had a string of hit singles and a best-selling album "Amants poétiques" a year later but eventually disbanded in 2000.

With voices that have an individual quality and a pedigree in R'n'B and soul, it's a shame the three have chosen to release yet another version of a song which became an international hit for Brazilian one-hit wonder Morris Albert back in 1975 and has been covered by just about anybody and everybody over the years.

And that includes a version by Israeli singer Mike Brant who brought the song "back to France" in a manner of speaking the same year Albert was having a hit with it everywhere else in English.

Brant released "Dis lui", which you'll notice is also the refrain used in the Vigon Bamy Jay recording.

At this point you might be asking how come "back to France"?

Well the person responsible for the melody in the first place was French songwriter Louis "Loulou" Gasté who, back in 1988, successfully sued Albert for copyright infringement of the his 1957 song "Pour toi" and was officially recognised as "the sole creator of the song".

Anyway, Vigon Bamy Jay are giving a private concert in Paris on March 13 and the album "Les Soul men" contains covers of much more worthwhile songs which should show off their individual and collective talents better including "Sitting on the dock of the bay", "Ain't no sunshine" and "Unchained melody".

It's just a pity they chose to release "Feelings" as the first single.

But judge for yourselves and maybe visit their official website for more information and updates.

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