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Dinner Music: Michel Polnareff
experimental french folk pop-rock from France's favorite character
Michel Polnareff is a French singer and songwriter, primarily known for his experimental indie rock and pop from the sixties, seventies and eighties. Polnareff was born into a creative family, his mother was a dancer and his father a musician, who encouraged him to pursue music. Pursue it, he did mightily. His career, and life, has been a ride of ups and downs. His often flamboyant and unapologetic style got him in trouble with the French authorities, who fined him 60,000 francs for a poster showing his bare behind*. He struggled with depression and tax issues, particularly when his money manager took off with all of his cash and he had to decamp in the US for a decade to avoid jail time. Despite the struggles, he achieved major fame and is widely considered to be one of France’s absolute best exports.
Love Me Please Love Me was released in 1966 to lukewarm critical response, but strong fan support. Upon release, a critic called the title track a “low point with its groveling romanticism.” Despite the pan, the song hit #1 on the French charts. And fairly, because it’s a soaring, endearing epic that sweeps you through love, heartache and longing. Perhaps the critic was going through a breakup? The album is full of feel good, guitar-forward melodies, like Histoire de coeur and Ballade pour toi, with sweet, simple vocals floating to the top. When listening to Love Me Please Love Me, you can’t help but buy into whatever Polnareff is selling.
Love Me Please Love Me - Michel Polnareff:
Pair this album with:
Marie Thibault Pet Nat Rosé. This 100% gamay rosé is a bit earthy, but also juicy and fruit forward, with notes of violet and cranberry. The dark color adds to the flavor, making it both drinkable and more complex than your average rosé.
Rosé Can Chicken. A more sophisticated version of the beer can chicken, this recipe is great for entertaining. Not to mention it has instructions I can easily get behind, like “open the can of rosé and pour yourself a glass.”
Thank you, thank you, thank you. Have a great rest of your week and weekend.