Born in Paris in 1943, Jaques Dutronc was a naturally talented musician, learning the piano and the violin whilst just a little lad, but he soon progressed! If you're from France you might think it bizarre that Jacques Dutronc is not that well known in the UK, in fact there has only ever been one album that has successfully brought together all of this marvellous man's output from the 1960's, and even more strangely it has only just recently been released. With Et Moi Et Moi Et Moi released on RPM in 2009, this figurehead of popular French culture finally gets his chance to shine in the Anglosphere.
Lets be honest, the chic filled glory of the 1960's French music scene is something really to behold by any music lover, its actually really difficult to find a dud album from the sixties amongst the multitude of singers and producers from across the English Channel, but with this compilation, any thoughts of Serge Gainsbourg or the yé-yé girls must surely take a back seat to the talents of Jacques Dutronc, a man who literally had it all in his musical arsenal.
This compilation begins with the title track, Et Moi Et Moi Et Moi was Dutronc's first big hit in France back in 1966, and it is easy to see why, a song which certainly swaggers and oozes marvellousness combining the best of Anglo Rhythm and Blues with a French twist. And to be fair, on looking through the sleeve notes, its easily noticeable that this man was at one point the coolest man alive, with a repertoire to match. Three more songs joined this opening single on Dutroncs first EP, thankfully all of these songs can be found on this compilation, these include the excellent J'ai Mis Un Tigre Dans Ma Guitare, the RnB effort of Mini Mini Mini and the brilliantly garagey Les Gens Sont Fous, Les Tamps Sont Fous, quite the EP, shifting 300,000 copies back in 1966.
On the back of such success, it was only natural that more EP's would follow, giving Dutronc permission to paint an even broader canvas, for example songs like Les Playboy sounds more like a musical number, whilst On Nous Cache Tout, On Nous Dit Rien sounds like something that would be at home at a Northern Mod club. Currently my favourite track on here is L'espace D'une Fille, a sweet little number that warms the heart even if I don't know what the words mean.
On first listen to this album you are instantly hit with a sense that life cannot get any better, you'll feel like you have bought a little treasure and indeed you have, by the tenth listen you will no doubt have convinced yourself that Jacques Dutronc is one of the greatest musicians ever to have lived. There honestly is not one bad track on this album, providing us Anglo folk with yet another example of the brilliance of the French music scene of the 1960's. All in all, a guaranteed winner for your music collection! And another great unearthing job by RPM Records with great linear notes included.