The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #67071   Message #1118488
Posted By: alanabit
18-Feb-04 - 12:09 PM
Thread Name: Jacques Brel - what's it all about?
Subject: RE: Jacques Brel - what's it all about?
The thing I have noticed which seems to be uniquely British is the boorish dismissal of songs written in another language. I have, on occasion in Germany, encountered howls of outrage from compatriots when I have dared to sing a song in German! I think it has something to do with the thick headed refusal of some Brits to learn a second language.
My French is pretty miserable, but I like Brel's work very much. I think his songs mean a bit more if you can actually get to see some film of him performing them. He was a wonderful performer and his mannerisms and body language put over so much more in what was a very stylised way of performing. I guess there are people who (quite reasonably) don't like Brel. However, a lot of the criticism I have heard smacks of that, "I don't want to be clever like no bloody foreigner..." attitude of so many Brits. I don't like opera and I know nothing about it, but I am not proud of my ignorance.