Music

Belle du Berry: I’m curious about Russian music

Concerts of French music are always interesting for Russia: whether they represent the great world classical traditions, or whether introduce the national chanson or the modern musical life of France, which refracts world culture through the prism of its own choice (more individual now than national). Paris Combo is a team that belongs to the latter category. Its work combines both French music (chanson) and foreign influences (swing, jazz, ethno), united in a single eclectic impulse.

The band will arrive in Moscow for a long-awaited concert on March 6, 2020 at the House of Music.The cultural and political magazine “E-Vesti” had the opportunity to find out what Paris Combo is going to do in Russia: we publish interview with the band’s founder and singer, Belle du Berry.

EV: How do you manage to be so eclectic and still be a real French singer?

Belle du Berry: I don’t really think about it … I freely follow my sources of inspiration, I try to be myself as much as possible,  and to express myself sincerely in my songs and onstage.  I don’t feel the fact I sing in French as an obstacle to exploring various ideas, quite the contrary in fact!

 

EV: How do you manage to be so eclectic and still be a real French singer

Belle du Berry: I don’t really think about it … I freely follow my sources of inspiration, I try to be myself as much as possible,  and to express myself sincerely in my songs and onstage.  I don’t feel the fact I sing in French as an obstacle to exploring various ideas, quite the contrary in fact!

 

EV: Please, tell us, how has been formed your creative union with other musicians? Were you specifically looking for representatives of other musical traditions, or did your creativity unite you, and it happened that the musicians are of non-French origin?

Belle du Berry: In Paris there is a cosmopolitan atmosphere, with artists from everywhere, so it is not unusual to meet musicians from other backgrounds – in our case it just happened naturally, in the course of playing in different bands etc!

Paris Combo

 

EV: Tell us a few words about each of the musicians and show what do you have personally in common with them (what things in life do you look at the same way)?

Belle du Berry: What we have most in common is our love of music! With David Lewis I have made 7 albums and written so many songs together.  Potzi and I are both self-taught musicians so I guess we share that point of view! With François, it’s the rock n’roll spirit which we share.

 

EV: What has formed your style that doesn’t look like anything else?

Belle du Berry: The eclectic  Paris musical scene in the 1990’s.

Playing in bars and cabarets in Paris in the mid nineties taught us  that we could try and create unusal musical combinations with  whatever influences we were hearing at the time.

 

EV: What did you like as a child? How has It happened that your musical consciousness has taken on such a global scale?

Belle du Berry: I loved poetry and I began to «travel» by listening to pop and rock music that came from the UK and USA and made it’s way to the French countryside!

 

EV : What are you singing about mainly? About love? What do you bring to the world?

Belle du Berry: Love, of course, but I’d like to bring a spirit of sharing which happens when I meet the audience, wherever they may be. My songs talk about many subjects whether they be personal or more universal.

 

EV: What do you have in common with Russia? Could you ever imagine that you will have a Russian member of the group?

Belle du Berry: I’m curious about Russian music, much of which is unknown in France – who knows, maybe one day we can collaborate with Russian musicians…

 

EV: Are you particularly preparing for a performance here, or are you a globalist in your approach to the audience-are you sure that the repertoire is universal?

Belle du Berry: We try to make our performance work for all audiences, we sing the same songs for everyone!