France Gall - Zozoi
New from Jazzman is a Brasilian-themed 45 with a jazzy French femme samba vox on one side and a percussive funky organ groove on the flip - both sides are destined for dancefloor dominance!
Squeaky-clean and squeaky-voiced French teenager singer Gall was a fantasy for many red-blooded young men in France throughout the ‘60s. In fact she still is today, sort of like a French version of Madonna or Britney Spears, she’s still at it.
In the ‘60s, powered by songs penned by the inimitable Serge Gainsbourg, her pretty, naïve looks and bubblegum pop served to engender popular success (‘Teenie-Weenie-Boppie’ anyone?). She was a regular in the French charts and her music began become known around the rest of the world, rare for French artists at the time (still true today!). Perhaps it was this glimpse of the outside world that provided the inspiration to record what must have been closer to ‘world music’ than the usual fare of wide-eyed French pop, for the 1970 recording ‘Zozoi’ is drenched in jazz and samba rhythms from Brasil. The collaboration was indeed world music, with the backing track performed in Brasil by Brasilian musicians, and the vocals later dubbed in Paris.
The release of the single on a small label didn’t help sales though, nor did the fact that musically it was literally 1000s of miles away from the baby-pop that her adoring fans were accustomed to, so the record flopped, making it the rarity that it is today. Still, doesn’t mean it’s a bad record, in fact it’s pretty damn good!
São Paulo-born conductor, arranger, pianist and composer Erlon Chaves was an icon of Brasilian popular music until his death in 1974. Among his many accomplishments and recordings was the music to a controversial film made in 1970, ‘Soninha Toda Pura’ (‘Soninha All Pure One’). The film starred the beautiful 20 year old Argentinian actress Adriana Prieto, who was tragically to die just 5 years later in a car accident. One of her many films, the controversial nature of the film was its lesbian theme, the sexual content causing problems with the strict Brasilian censor.
The soundtrack was released only in Brasil in limited quantities on a 7” single, and is now a rare find indeed. With music performed by the obscure IRP-3, it’s a fantastic example of high-flying organ with a funky backing and that all-important, irresistible Brasilian swing!