Growing up in the French-Canadian milieu of my youth, there was always ‘Le Chansonier’

This edition has been in the family since the 1950s

This edition has been in the family since the 1950s

accompanying family get-togethers. This compilation of songs had been published by a French Canadian priest who had the bright idea of encouraging the use of French by offering songs for people to sing.
I am indebted to this tradition and, as a way to give back, offer this compilation of some of the songs from the Chansonier along with others I learned from my parents. Enjoy – amusez-vous bien!

  1. Frère Jacques a classic wake-up call – getting us off to a fresh morning!
  2. Quand on a du foin… a simple fact of the original Canada (and maybe France?)farmer life: you got hay, all goes well; no hay, not so…
  3. A la Claire Fontaine- a fellow just sauntering about lovelorn, jumping into fountains
  4. Vive la Canadienne- ah … the object of our affections – the Canadian woman!
  5. Il etait un petit navire- seagoing and storytelling adventures!
  6. C’est l’aviron- nd the energy and rewards of rowing – why not?!
  7. Dans la foret- the forest is where we spend most of our time — with the owls and cuckoos- the original is ‘prochaine’ but I’ve always sung it as ‘lointaine’
  8. Au Clair de la Lune- this classic not only introduces the nighttime adventures we engaged in (pretty tame eh?!) but the goodnight theme of the end of this compilation
  9. Meunier tu dors- just happening upon the miller who has fallen asleep
  10. Bonsoir mes amis- the difficult parting after such a wonderful evening – you can hear goodbyes as we part in the woods
  11. DoDisJeDoDo- and going to sleep – this one dedicated to Roman, Mia, Henry, Dakota, and all children being introduced to French !

Many of these songs now appear in the Cabaret I have put together

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