Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Cover up: Poupée de cire, poupée de son

Here is a list of covers. If you have some, please write to me in the comments!
Poupée de cire, poupée de son (Wax doll, bran doll) was the winning entry in the Eurovision Song Contest of 1965. It was performed in French by France Gall representing Luxembourg.
The song, composed by Serge Gainsbourg, was the first non-ballad to win the Contest and is generally agreed to be one of the great Contest entries.

The word son in the song title has frequently been misunderstood, especially by English-speakers, as meaning "sound", and this has led to several attempts to explain poupée de son as having to do with a singing-doll toy. There is, however, no evidence that a toy of this kind (une poupée qui chante) has ever been called a "sound doll" in French.

Son in this context is an entirely different word, meaning "bran" (or sawdust, resembling bran), of the kind used to stuff children's flopy dolls. Poupée de son is a long-standing expression in French; it is also used in the expression Syndrome du bébé "poupée de son", "floppy baby syndrome" (infantile hypotonia), and can even refer to someone too drunk to stand up. "Bran doll" as a phrase is not entirely unknown in English either: "no more brains or backbone than a bran doll"

The original: France Gall - Poupée de cire, poupée de son

Coverversions of Poupée de cire, poupée de son in other languages include:

English: Twinkle - A Lonely Singing Doll
Italian: France Gall - Io sì, tu no ("I do, you don't")
German: France Gall - Das War Eine Schöne Party
Japanese: France Gall - Yumemiro Chanson Ningyo ("Dreaming chanson doll")
Portuguese: Karina - Boneca de cera, boneca de som
Spanish: Karina - Muñeca De Cera
Swedish: Gitte Hænning - Det kan väl inte jag rå för ("I really can't help it")
Danish: Gitte Hænning - Lille Dukke ("Little Doll")
Finnish: Ritva Palukka - Vahanukke, laulava nukke

Thanks to Alan!



Hello again Sofie
I really love these themed posts with one great song in so many varied versions.
France Gall is always gonna be my Queen of the Ye Ye girls along with Francoise Hardy but it is always nice to hear from Gitte who was one of the prettiest girls on the scene at that time.
Loved the music.

Alan said...

Thanks to you, Lush. I've heard four more, and learned the right sense of "son" in the song. It can be a play on words, like Gainsbourg liked to do... And I also learned that "dukke" (with two "k"s), in Danish, means "doll" :)

Lush said...

Hi Yeyeohyeah, glad you liked! Nice to see you like us Danish girls! There will be another Danish girl post today..

And Alan, that's a very important thing to a know..good to see you are taking private Danish lessons! ;)

italianbeat said...

thanks for this cover of this wonderful song.

The swedish version, is sung by the France gall ot Gitte?

Lush said...

By Gitte :)

italianbeat said...

excuse me! they are confused to me with the songs!

In the Japanese version France Gall sings with one more acute voice than in the french original version. It like too much.. more than the french version!

Ah... I've two versions one in spanish by Karina
and one in deutch by the Moulinetts!

Lush said...

Ooooh can't you upload them on ohshare? that would be great!

italianbeat said...

gladly! But I do not know this system. Do have you mail?

Lush said...

I don't like to post my mail here. but it's really not that difficult. try and go to www.ohshare.com find the file, upload, and wait for the link ! :)

litlgrey said...

Awesomeness surrounds you, and the work that you do.

Alan said...

It could have been "window", but not a bad word to begin with, "dukke" (just kidding).

About what italianbeat said of France Gall in Japanese, I think, if I'm not much wrong, that this is the oriental way of singing, in a high tone.

italianbeat said...

Done, Lush!


Alan, I think it's allright, this must be made in order to satisfy the taste of the public Japanese, is france gall has been best.

Lush said...

hmmm did u remember to upload the files? there is nothing to download :/

italianbeat said...

It doesen't work with my Mac with any kind of file.
I will try again but I do not know what to make.

natasha said...

"Wax doll, bran doll" is not a good translation :)

'Cire' means 'wax', but it refers to the wax tubes that were used for playing back music in the very beginning. 'Son' means sound. It's all about music.

Serge Gainsbourg would not have written about bran :)

earthgoesaround said...

This Japanese version is briliant, thanks!

Here's the German version by Die Moulinettes!

(and italianbeat, you are right, ohshare.com does not work with Safari, but it does with Firefox)

italianbeat said...

Thanks, Earth.

Alan said...

Fine what you comment, natasha. I think is a play on words (as I said before), with the two meanings of "cire" (sustance-record) and "son" (bran-sound). Hence the impossible translation.

spikedcandy said...

Very interesting discussion about the lyric translation, I didn't know the other meaning of 'de son'.

I used to have a 'Poupées De Son' segment on my blog, where I posted lots of covers of this. When I'm up to blogging again, I'll resume. Still have loads more covers to go! ;)

coates said...

Other German versions are sung by
Angélique - Das war eine schöne Party
Alsmann Getz - Das war eine schöne Party
There is also a Dutch version "de modepop" by Merckens Marijke
In Spanish "muneca de cera" by Rosalia and last but not least, Varik Titu - Vahanukk should be from Estonia.

tumasch said...

Here's a (french) version by German fun-punk band Wizo:
Enjoy :-)

italianbeat said...

Hi Sofie,
to when a post on the covers of Locomotion? :D

Anonymous said...

wow...the france gall german version is messed up.

Lush said...

fixing it!

Onzichtbaredj said...

I have the Flemish version, "de modepop" by Merckens Marijke
If you want.

Lush said...

yes pls send it to me! dansmoncafe8@yahoo.com

Swanny said...

Hi Sophie, you know how much I love this song ( P d C, P d S )and unfortunately I have to add to your covers - this one I found on YouTube and it is catchy yet damn annoying. I almost like it but that would be such sacrilege to Isabelle. You don't have to add it to your list, but I thought I had better let you know of it's existence.

Swanny said...

I had better give you the link, sorry.


Swanny said...

Wow, now get this one too!!!!


Anonymous said...

where can i find the lyrics for the portuguese cover?

gloria said...

this is fantastic!
can you repost the songs so that we can listen to them please????!

Anonymous said...

hello, can you re-upload the german version of France Gall - "Das War Eine Schöne Party ", please!!!!!!!
thanks ed