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Baker's Dozen

Inhabiting The Music: Charlotte Gainsbourg's Favourite Albums
Jeremy Allen , April 25th, 2018 07:45

Ahead of her appearance on The Quietus' stage at this year's Field Day Festival, Charlotte Gainsbourg takes Jeremy Allen through her favourite albums, from Portishead to Bach, Lou Reed to her dad


Serge Gainsbourg - L'Homme a tête de chou
I could have chosen Histoire de Melody Nelson but I've selected L'Homme a tête de chou (Man with a cabbage head) just for a change. The story of Marilou is on that record, and it's also the voice of my father which I treasure. It's always hard to have your parents as singers - they have a singer's voice and they have their personal, private voice. He hated his voice in the earlier days where he sang much more. This is a real portrait of him; Melody Nelson is a portrait of both of them, and it's a fantasy, and it's different. This one for me is really as original and as melodic and modern as Melody Nelson.

You know, 'Aeroplanes' is a beautiful song. He was just brilliant at taking whatever time he needed. Now songs are so formatted, but here there are songs that are seven minutes long. It's a real voyage and a real story. 'Marilou Sous La Neige' is one of my favourite songs because it's so melodic, and he has the most beautiful voice on it. 

I think it came out in 1976. We were living with a nanny. The cover shot was taken in a garden that wasn't his. He put L'homme a tête de chou - which was a statue he bought for himself - in the garden and photographed himself with the statue. Now the statue is in his house. I have his house, I bought his house and it's all I have left of him - all his old objects, his whole environment. I guess it's very much linked with this album.