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9 Amazing French Singers That Will Make Your Life More Romantic

9 Amazing French Singers That Will Make Your Life More Romantic

We could all use a little more romance in our lives, and no matter what it is they are singing about, the French do romance incredibly well. There is something nostalgic, something so tenderly beautiful about the city of love and all its artistic history, including the aching words of its love songs, and the passion and the candor of their execution.

When was the last time you sat with a record player and a glass of wine and simply listened to the crooning of a French song? We may or may not be able to put our finger on why, but there really is no other kind of music that makes us feel exactly like French songs do. Here is a list of some of the best romantic singers that France has offered us.

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Brigitte Bardot

Was there anyone more beautiful than Brigitte Bardot? While better known perhaps for her acting roles than her singing, Bardot spent a significant amount of time producing some wonderful songs, the most famous of them perhaps being the 1968 hit Bonnie and Clyde, which she recorded with Serge Gainsbourg. Bardot’s music is sexy, dreamy, nostalgic. We dare you not to float away on the intoxicating French lyrics …

Serge Gainsbourg

Gainsbourg was a writer and producer who worked with numerous French women to create some of the most charming pop songs, albums and film scores from the 60s through to the 80s. It was his earlier work, however, that truly struck a chord. His work with Bardot and wife Jane Birkin is memorable, particularly the heated (and controversial) track Je T’aime Moi Non Plus which he shared vocally with Birkin.

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Edith Piaf

Perhaps the most famous of all the French singers, Piaf was indomitable. They called her “the little sparrow” and her legend has continued to grow posthumously. No singer has rivaled her since, for she was the most insane amalgamation of being street-smart, powerful, passionate and frail all at once. She learned to sing on the streets and was trained by professionals as she moved through the ranks to become the greatest French singer of all time. Her music cuts through you now, just the same as it always did.

Françoise Hardy

The prettiest French pop songs you ever will hear come from this singer. You will never tire of listening to Françoise.

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Jane Birkin

Also an actress, doe-eyed Birkin has a sensational music career to boot. First discovered by and then married to Gainsbourg, her tunes have a childish innocence while still oozing romance. The languid and poppy sweetness of her songs is the perfect slow-dance-after-dinner music.

Jacques Brel

Though Belgian-born, Brel composed and performed most of his songs in French. A friend and singing companion of Edith Piaf, Brel created some of the most beautiful, piano ballads and his songs were influential to the likes of David Bowie and Nina Simone.

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Marie Laforêt

A last minute replacing of her sister in a singing competition would suddenly veer into an illustrious pop career for the impassioned and beautiful Marie Laforêt. The videos of her live performances are compelling and emotionally charged, particularly her version of Viens Viens. Laforêt has a most unusual and distinguished singing voice, and her songs evoke passion and love. You’ll be singing in full (French) force in no time.

Carla Bruni

One could cook all their meals to a Carla Bruni album! Her smoky voice and gentle guitar makes you want to push open the windows and welcome in Spring (no matter what the season). It is the perfect floating-around-the-house music.

Frida Bocarra

Bocarra is a Moroccan-born multilingual French singer, also of Italian heritage. With an operatic vocal style and an orchestra behind her, Bocarra is the stuff of legends. The track Hundred Thousand Songs is the quintessential example of the idea behind this article. Do yourselves a favor — grab a glass of wine, sit back, close your eyes, and just listen.

Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on June 20, 2019

Science Says Guitar Players’ Brains Are Different From Others’

Science Says Guitar Players’ Brains Are Different From Others’

There’s nothing quite like picking up a guitar and strumming out some chords. Listening to someone playing the guitar can be mesmerising, it can evoke emotion and a good guitar riff can bring out the best of a song. Many guitar players find a soothing, meditative quality to playing, along with the essence of creating music or busting out an acoustic version of their favourite song. But how does playing the guitar affect the brain?

More and more scientific studies have been looking into how people who play the guitar have different brain functions compared to those who don’t. What they found was quite astonishing and backed up what many guitarists may instinctively know deep down.

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Guitar Players’ Brains Can Synchronise

You didn’t read that wrong! Yes, a 2012 study[1] was conducted in Berlin that looked at the brains of guitar players. The researchers took 12 pairs of players and got them to play the same piece of music while having their brains scanned.

During the experiment, they found something extraordinary happening to each pair of participants – their brains were synchronising with each other. So what does this mean? Well, the neural networks found in the areas of the brain associated with social cognition and music production were most activated when the participants were playing their instruments. In other words, their ability to connect with each other while playing music was exceptionally strong.

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Guitar Players Have a Higher Intuition

Intuition is described as “the ability to understand something instinctively, without the need for conscious reasoning” and this is exactly what’s happening when two people are playing the guitar together.

The ability to synchronise their brains with each other, stems from this developed intuitive talent indicating that guitar players have a definite spiritual dexterity to them. Not only do their brains synchronise with another player, but they can also even anticipate what is to come before and after a set of chords without consciously knowing. This explains witnessing a certain ‘chemistry’ between players in a band and why many bands include brothers who may have an even stronger connection.

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This phenomenon is actually thought to be down to the way guitarists learn how to play – while many musicians learn through reading sheet music, guitar players learn more from listening to others play and feeling their way through the chords. This also shows guitarists have exceptional improvisational skills[2] and quick thinking.

Guitar Players Use More of Their Creative, Unconscious Brain

The same study carried out a different experiment, this time while solo guitarists were shredding. They found that experienced guitar players were found to deactivate the conscious part of their brain extremely easily meaning they were able to activate the unconscious, creative and less practical way of thinking more efficiently.

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This particular area of the brain – the right temporoparietal junction – typically deactivates with ‘long term goal orientation’ in order to stop distractions to get goals accomplished. This was in contrast to the non-guitarists who were unable to shut off the conscious part of their brain which meant they were consciously thinking more about what they were playing.

This isn’t to say that this unconscious way of playing can’t be learnt. Since the brain’s plasticity allows new connections to be made depending on repeated practice, the guitar player’s brain can be developed over time but it’s something about playing the guitar in particular that allows this magic to happen.

Conclusion

While we all know musicians have very quick and creative brains, it seems guitar players have that extra special something. Call it heightened intuition or even a spiritual element – either way, it’s proven that guitarists are an exceptional breed unto themselves!

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Featured photo credit: Lechon Kirb via unsplash.com

Reference

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