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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67523
Recording details: August 2004
All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: June 2006
Total duration: 3 minutes 27 seconds

La chanson des blondes
First line:
Provençaux, le soleil d'ici
1873; à Henri Regnier
author of text
1874; Poèmes de Provence

This song has the subtitle Ronde provençale and was composed in 1873. The writer Jean Aicard (1848–1921) was a friend of the composer and he introduced Provençal themes into Parisian literary life, above all with his later invention of the fantastic figure of Maurin des Maures, a kind of Robin Hood of the French south. La chansons des blondes appears in Aicard’s Poèmes de Provence (1874), a book adorned with an illustration of a cicada and the rubric Tout l’été. The song’s title is deceptive—this is no hymn to Aryan femininity. Provence is famous for its olive-skinned women, but this song celebrates other aspects of provencal life—wine, oil, the perpetually chirping cicada and the sea glinting in the sunlight. Much later, in 1907, Paladilhe wrote a song cycle, La chanson de l’enfant, to Aicard’s words.

from notes by Graham Johnson © 2006
English: Richard Stokes

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