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Bon Cop, Bad Cop (#99)

This is one of the few movies this has crossed linguistic lines across Canada, with both Anglophone and Francophone target audiences.   “Good Cop, Bad Cop” (2006), is a French / English bilingual movie – in which one co-actor speaks French, and the other co-actor speaks English.  It also happened to be one of the highest grossing box-office movies in the history of Montréwood and Canadian cinema.

The plot itself is intriguing – a murder which occurred right on the Ontario-Québec border, therefore involving both provincial police forces (the Ontario Provincial Police [OPP] and the Sureté du Québec).  In order to keep the Federal RCMP out of the case, both the OPP and Sureté du Québec lead investigators were forced to work together to solve the crime.  By doing so, they’d be able to secure a larger budget for their respective police forces.

But it’s not difficult to dig up many nuances from the days of the old Two Solitudes, the movie’s humour was based on stereotypes – and both co-actors brought such issues to the forefront.  The movie basically made Canadians (both Anglophones and Francophones alike) laugh at themselves, and the ridiculousness of how some people can get so hung up over nothing.

The main characters were played by Patrick Huard and Colm Feore.  Huard is a well-known Francophone actor who grew up in Montréal, and Feore grew up in Southern Ontario and has held many acting roles in Canada and Hollywood (some of them in major productions, such as Pearl Harbour and The Sum of All Fears).  They spoke their respective languages in the film, but the movie was subtitled into both French and English for unilingual Canadians.

The French Wikipedia article is much better than the English one.   The article is here (it offers more information on the plot, the French vs English jokes in the movies, and other backgrounders) :  http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bon_Cop,_Bad_Cop.

This movie did very well considering Canada struggles to get Anglophones to come to the box-office for home-grown films (competition from Hollywood is just too strong).  In the end, it shows that there is an appetite for this type of movie, across both linguistic lines.  It baffles me that we’re not seeing more bilingual movies – or movies that venture more into this type of realm – especially when there’s obviously money to be had.

The interest alone that this movie generated showed that the concept of The Two Solitudes is slowly coming down.  There’s absolutely no way this movie would have been nearly as successful if it came out in the 1970s, 1980s, or 1990s.  It goes to show that the public’s political views are changing, that people are finally able to laugh at themselves and not take themselves too seriously, and that hang-ups around the old Two Solitudes are viewed as rediculous subjects of humour rather than the older flash points of tension (on both sides of the linguistic lines).  People want to see the type of interactions we saw here, and they proved it by opening their wallets.

Hopefully more writers, producers and directors make more movies like this.  Eric Canuel (Director) and Kevin (Tierney) tested the terrain of how far the lines of political correctness could be pushed – and they showed to a good number of people that time have changed, that they continue to change, and it can be done.  Not only that, they showed when it’s done well, it makes money.  In the end, good on them!

Some big-name directors and producers who still in live the “old school” of decades past likely wouldn’t want to go there (perhaps it wouldn’t fit their “personalities” – I’ll just leave it there).  But there’s no point in trying to turn a horse into a cow.  The rest of the world continues to march forward, regardless.   It would be great to see a younger generation take up the torch – one which is a bit more in touch with the the realities of today’s under-30s & under-40s.  Who knows – perhaps we’ll see Xavier Dolan take a crack at a cross-cultural movie like this – you never know, he just might.

La petite vie (#98)

I set a few rules for myself when writing this blog.   One of these rules was to write about things which are generally current, pertinent and of interest.

On the surface, this post sort of defeats the above rule.  It is about a television sitcom series, La petite vie, which ran for several years, but which went off the air in 1998.  In a sense, you could say it’s not very current, thus its pertinence could be questioned, and if its pertinence can be questioned, it might not be of interest.

However, contrary to the above arguments, I believe the show still carries an unmatched legacy in Québec pop-culture and society which keeps it current;  people are still parodying it (kids still wear Halloween costumes of the main characters), people still talk about it, and re-runs & box sets are still as popular as ever.  The two main characters, môman and pôpa (pronounced with a heavy East-End Montréal accent), still continue to “appear” in costume at award gala ceremonies as award presenters.  It’s pertinent for many reasons; the show attracted (and continues to attract) the attention of an entire society and generation on a scale never seen before, it galvanized the type of humour Québec identifies with and how Québec it views itself (you can judge how someone or a society views themselves by their own self-depricating humour), comedians and subsequent shows (both sitcoms and in a sense even dramas), seem to have based many of their themes around the overall context of La petite vie.  And finally, the show is just plain interesting.

La petite vie literally translates as “The small life”, but it’s actually an expression in French with a bit deeper meaning (and direct relevance to the show).  It basically means a small life” in English (or “a petty life”), in the sense that your whole world revolves around a very small circle, small area, and your views, outlook, and goals are equally small.  You just live life in a tiny comfort zone with little care (and perhaps even little knowledge) of anything outside that comfort zone.  It’s not bad – it’s just small.  Problems which happen to people living “a small life” may not be very big problems in the grand scheme of life — But because these mundane problems constitute “everything” that is happening to these people (owing to their life being so small), the smallest things become overblown and huge issues (ie: it could be the end of the world that the garden hose sprung a leak, that the neighbour gossiped about your daughter, that a little milk got spilled…).

I’d put La petite vie in the category of “ridiculous” comedy, yet genius in its punch lines which makes it absolutely hilarious.  It’s filmed with live characters and centres around a working class East-End Montréal family.  The middle-aged mother and father are the two main characters.  It’s their interactions with their four children and other people around them which constitutes the essence of the scripts.   The parents are magnetic poles who attract everyone into their home, where the series is mostly filmed.  It plays on the absurdity of the oil-and-vinegar personalities of the family members, and makes for amazing comedy.

I’m not sure English North America has something comparable featuring live actors.   The closest comparisons which come to mind are actually cartoons – a mix between The Simpsons, and The King of the Hill.  Now picture those two cartoon series being filmed by live actors, with their ridiculous plots, crude language, and recurrent expanded secondary characters.  It would be an extremely tough act to pull off by any stretch of the imagination.  The only way it would work would be if the humour was quick, witty, and punch lines definately would have to carry the show.  That’s La petite vie – and they actually managed to pull it off!

During the period of its airing, the show twice attracted the largest Canadian television audience in history, exceeding 4 million viewers, and individual episodes regularly attracted over 2 million television viewers.   It appeared nation-wide on Radio-Canada, but also aired in Europe and around the world on TV5 Monde.

Its appeal was enhanced further by way of the self-deprecating humour of a “stereotypical” Québec working-class family;  along with lots of action in the kitchen, adult and near-adult kids charting their own courses in all directions but still running back to the safety of mom & dad, quirky interactions with neighbours, a clash of old and new values, small family scandals, and that ever-so-recognizable East-End Montréal accent.

I want to re-stress that it’s shot in a fast-paced, often very heavy Montréal East-End accent (it might be a bit difficult for Anglophones to follow if their French is at a less-than-upper-intermediate level, at a minimum — but that’s only because the language is extremely heavy on joual combined with a heavy Montréal East-End accent).   The show’s comedy just wouldn’t come through the same if it was made in any other accent or with any less joual.  The accent basically set the subtext for many scenes because the accent is stereotypically associated with a certain type of personality (just as a New York or Texas accent is often stereotyped with a certain type of personality ).

Now you can understand a bit more why I thought it might be useful, in more than just one way, to write a series on our 32 different accents in Canadian French, in addition to offering other tid-bits here and there on Joual and other language quirks (it’s all starting to slowly come together now — and you’ll be a mini-expert on Québec and Canadian French culture in no time 😉 ).  In addition to providing us with an identity and regional culture, accents and the level of speech we use do carry much in the way of sub-text about who we might be as a person.  Whether that sub-text is true or not, that’s a completely different debate (click HERE and HERE for the earlier two posts relevant to the “Eastern Montréal and Laval old town” accent, and HERE for the post on Joual).

In many ways, when people think of Québec television, they think of La petite vie.    Although the series spanned a good chunk of the 1990s, younger generations (post Y2K) still know it, and still find it funny.   It’s one of the few sure-bet cultural phenomena which has permeated into every Francophone home in Québec (as well as Francophone homes across Canada) .   The show is an institution unto itself.

I’m not going to go into all the characters.   Nor will I delve deeper into the plot, nor its awards (suffice to say it’s an award winner).  I can leave it to you to research on your own if you’re interested (the French Wikipedia article is fairly comprehensive in this sense.  It can be viewed HERE, and Google Translate, with which to read it in English, can be opened HERE).

A few stars and characters in the show were the topics of some earlier posts:  Marc Labrèche was a main actor, Rémy Girard was a regular actor, Janette Bertand made appearances, as did Normand Brathwaite, Claude Legault, and Danny Turcotte.

Box series are available for sale.  If you wish to purchase the box set, you might wa to check out Archambeault or Renaud-Bray’s websites (also the subject of a previous post).

If, for whatever reason, you do want to develop an ear for Montréal East-End accent (and not just limit your language learning to more neutral or “friendlier” accents, such as Standard Québécois, the Greater Montréal accent, or some others), then the box set of this series might be the answer for you.   At least it would be sub-titled if you’re entering the realm of accents for the first time.  But I would not recommend tackling this front unless you’re already fairly comfortable in French, or you find that most of your interactions in French are with people who grew up on the Islands of Montréal, Laval, and part of the South Shore (Longueuil).

You may be able to find official footage online.  Please stick to official sites and do not pirate.  Works such as this is part of our cultural heritage.

TV5, & European French (#97)

(The second half of this post, below, will have some language quirks you may find interesting between EUROPEAN FRENCH and Canadian French).

All digital cable and direct broadcast satellite providers in Canada must carry a number of designated television channels (both in French and English) in their free bundle.  This means that, regardless of where we are in Canada, we all must receive access to a free, pre-determined basic line-up of the same stations, (there are a good number of such stations, which include CBC, Radio-Canada, Gobal, CTV, YTV, etc, etc.).  If your television bundle does not already include any of the pre-determined stations, you can ask your television provider to add it, and by law, they must do so.  (These free pre-determined stations are not to be confused with the mandatory basic pay-bundle stations, or the hundreds and hundreds of pay-per-month optional add-on channels or optional bundles which we can also choose from).

Among the free channels is TV5.  If you’re in Canada (even if you’re in the furthest reaches of the Arctic), and if you have television, you should have TV5 already (if you don’t – there may be an issue with your cable distributor’s package, and you can ask them to correct it by telling them it’s a CRTC designated “category A” channel).

The TV5 we receive in Canada is a Canadian partner of TV5 monde based in Paris.   It’s a consortium station of French-language broadcasters from around the world, sharing each other’s programming, and re-broadcasting their combined programming around the world.   TV5’s programming comes from:

  • Radio-Canada (Canada)
  • TFO (Ontario, Canada)
  • Télé-Québec (Québec, Canada)
  • France Télévisions (France)
  • Arte France (France)
  • CIRTEF (Africa)
  • RTS (Switzerland)
  • RTBF (Belgium)

TV5 is broadcast to almost 200 million people around the world (and has the second or third highest “cross-border” viewership in the world) – so it’s interesting to see what our Francophone cousins elsewhere are also watching.  This is a great chance to check out and learn more about la Francophonie internationale (the French speaking world beyond our borders).

TV5 is also a great way to catch French movies from outside Canada, such as those from Europe or Africa.

The website is here :  http://tv5.ca/

Click “grille horaire”  at the top of TV5’s website to see the daily programming schedules (international news programs, movies, television shows, etc.).


EUROPEAN FRENCH

A word on the type of French you’ll encounter on TV5:

If you’re learning or improving your French, TV5 can be a good way to train your ear to different international French accents, words and expression from around the world.

If French is not your first language, and if you’re more used to hearing Canadian French accents, you may sometimes have difficulties understanding certain strong French accents from Europe or elsewhere – especially if those accents and expressions are not spoken in international standard French (newscasts, documentaries, and more educated-level discussions in French in Europe is usually spoken in International French, so those would never pose a problem understanding).

Where you may encounter problems understanding certain things is when watching European movies or hearing regional European accents, in which the language can become very colloquial, using regional-specific slang, and which can often be spoken very fast.

I admit that although I don’t have problems understanding our various Canadian French accents, I do sometimes run into the occasional issue when I come across a very strong regional accent or colloquial expression from Europe which is not spoken in Canada, or which I cannot fit into context (it’s just a question of not being used to hearing it).

So do not feel discouraged if you run across some local European expressions, words, or accents which you have difficulty figuring out or which makes you strain your ear a little in order to understand – (that’s what the closed-caption option is for – lol).  But try to place what is being said into CONTEXT (the key word being “context”)…

For example, I remember the first time I ran across the word “Nickel” from France.  A business contact of mine told me our progress on a joint project was “nickel”, and they were very happy (I was told “Je crois que celà avance nickel!”;  literal translation – “It looks like everything is proceeding nickel).  Apart from the metal, I had never before heard “nickel” used in any other context other than to describe a metal alloy.

But even without having previously known this European meaning of the word, I knew from the context that it had to mean “excellent, great, perfect”.  In Canada we would choose different slang words to describe the same thing, but we would never say “nickel”.  And just like me in the above context, Europeans too would understand most of our own words when placed in context.

Perhaps in Canada, to use a similar metaphor, we could say “C’est chocolat”; – literal translation “It’s chocolate.” (this Canadian French expression is a bit dated, and very few people say this anymore, but it essentially means the same thing – “It’s perfect” or “It’s great”).  Regardless, someone from France would understand “C’est chocolat!” when placed in context, despite the fact that I don’t believe this expression has ever been used in Europe.  T

his is all to say that when listening to French on TV5, you sometimes will just have to place a certain amount of things into context.

Anecdotally, even though I have constant interaction with people from France, the very odd time I still do have to politely ask my business contacts or other people in Europe to repeat themselves if they say something or use a local word which is not international French, and which I do not quite understand on the first take.

It’s perfectly normal to do so.

Here is an example… On one of my last trips to France, I was asked by someone in Southern France “Est-ce que je vous met la quinte?” (litterally, “Am I dealing you a flush [of cards]?” or “Am I making you have a [coughing] fit?”).

I didn’t have the slightest clue what she was talking about.  I paused and thought for a moment, then I asked her to repeat herself, thinking I perhaps misunderstood owing to an accent issue.  But after she repeated it, I realized I hadn’t misunderstood due to an accent issue… I understood every word perfectly – but what she was saying made absolutely no sense to me.

Rather she was using a colloquial French expression, unique to Southern France – one which we simply don’t use in Canada, and to which I had never been exposed.

For us in Canada (and in International and proper “dictionary” French), a “quinte” means a “flush” in the card-playing sense, like a “flush of cards”.  It can also mean a “fit / bout”, such as a “coughing fit” or “a bout of the coughs”.  Thus, to me, it sounded like she was asking “Am I dealing you a flush of cards?” or “Am I making you have a coughing fit?” 

I was sure she could not possibly be asking me if I wanted a “flush of cards”, and I knew she wasn’t “making me cough”.

I apologized and said I didn’t understand what she was asking.  Knowing I was from Canada and that there are sometimes differences in French between the two countries, she rephrased her sentence and asked with a smile “Est-ce que je vous indispose?” (meaning “Am I bothering you?”).

It then clicked for me what she was asking, and what this very different expression meant!

I responded “No, no, not at all”, but I didn’t dare answer using the same wording she used.  I simply said “Non, pas du tout.”  (I don’t think it would have worked if I worded my answer “No no, you’re not making me cough”, or “No no, don’t deal me a straight flush.” – She probably would NOT have found that amusing – but on second thought, who knows, maybe she would have – sometimes you just have to use some polite tact, and then everything moves forward 😉 ).

It’s interesting how there can sometimes be language misunderstandings – even within the same language.

Do you want to know what the funny thing is?  The above conversation occurred in a very rural region of Southern France, in the town of Mazamet, just north of Carcassonne.  Even though this is a well known region of France, not at all isolated from the rest of the country, I still have a sneaking suspicion that if she were to say the same thing to someone in Paris, even a Parisian may not have understood her.

It goes to show that, to the same extent regional differences in French exist within Canada itself, they also very much exist within France.  And then there are the differences between French in France, Belgium, Switzerland, and other countries (but I’m not going to get into that here – although it is very interesting).

Back to this last example, her ultimate choice of words, “Est-ce que je vous indispose?” (“Am I bothering you?'”), could again be said slightly differently in Canada than in France (and perhaps different regions in France or Europe may also tend to choose different words).

What she ultimately said was 100% perfectly fine and correct, with a 0% chance of any misunderstanding — her last choice of words were perfect, beautiful International, standard French.  But, her choice to use the word “indisposer” (almost like “indisposition” in English) could perhaps, in a Canadian context, be considered a little bit literary (ie: “Am I causing you an indisposition”).

Here in Canada, we would be more apt to say “Est-ce que je vous dérange?” (Also meaning “Am I bothering you?”).  I’ve also heard people in France say “Est-ce que je vous dérange?”… so it just goes to say that there are lots of ways the same things can be said, but those choices may be influenced by geography (and those gaps become a bit wider when there’s an ocean of separation – literally).

I am offering these examples so you do not become discouraged when you run into these same issues when listening to European French on TV5.  Some people say learning Canadian French can be more difficult than France French – but really, I don’t think so.

As you can see from the above examples, learning French from Europe can be as equally challenging, with many of the same issues.  In France, they too have a good deal of expressions which can be considered quite regional (perhaps even odd), and which would take a long time to learn to understand.  (And at least you’re learning French… ever try learning a non-romance language?  For English speakers, French is a breeze to learn compared to most other languages – trust me — about 40 – 50% of the vocabulary can be directly associated with an English word, making it yet even easier).

When Europeans visit us here, they sometimes have to ask for clarification of what we say, just as I had to of them in the above example.  This happens most often when we speak to them with our own heavier regional accents, slang or words (rather than using a better enunciated Canadian standard accent, such as Standard Québecois, Standard Acadian, Standard Ontarian / Standard Prairie French, or a more international style of French — in which case Europeans have no problems understanding us).

You may recall from the “Our Accents” Post 4, The Big Three” that I strongly recommended to Anglophone Canadians that they should learn Standard Canadian Québécois.  I made this recommendation precisely for the above reasons – to increase your language mobility and compatibility.

People in other countries who are learning French are also encouraged to learn Standard French from France (pretty much the same French as our standard versions), but they’re also encouraged to develop an ear for a Parisian regional accent if they’re going to be interacting more with French from France.

The reasons are the same as my additional recommendation to Anglophone Canadians to develop an ear for the Greater Montréal & Upper St. Lawerence Accent.  If you have standard, international French down to a tee, and you also understand the most influential regional accent in your country (Regional Parisian if you deal with France, or Greater Montréal if you deal with Canada), you can then go anywhere in the world and do anything with little or no language obstacles.

But in the end, you study any type of French, any type of accent you want — that’s really the beauty of it (my own recommendations in no way should take away from the legitimacy or beauty of any regionalisms or accents).

The choices are numerous, the possibilities to learn something new are endless, and differences between regions should be celebrated.

There is no right or wrong regionalism (Parisian French should not have a prestige precedence over French in Bordeaux, and French in the Great Montréal region should not have a prestige precedence over French in Winnipeg).  My own suggestions merely come down to consideration of what you may hear more often – not what is “better” (it’s wrong to say that anyone’s regionalism or national way of speaking are “better” than another’s).

I’m actually an ardent supporter of regionalism.  Standard speech is a great thing, but regionalism (regional words, grammar and accents) add so much colour to a language.

Fortunately for all of us, miscommunications are rare and the vast vast majority of what is said is mutually understood without having to repeat.  In the end, for the sake of a very loose comparison, the difference between European French and Canadian French probably isn’t any greater than what exists between North American English and Scottish English — so really, there’s no need to fret over regional differences.

Check out TV5, and bonne exploration!


ADDENDUM:  2014-12-14

I just visited some friends in Montréal for a couple of days.  One friend is an immigrant from France, originally from Toulouse (close to Mazamet).  I asked him about the expression “Est-ce que je vous met la quinte?”.   He said he has never heard such an expression used in Toulouse before, but his family has a summer cottage in Brittany.

He says he vaguely remembers a Breton expression “donner la quinte”.  He thought in the Brittany context it might mean to “receive or give the bill (ie: in a restaurant)”.   But he was not sure.  He thought it would likely be a very regional expression and that it could very well have the meaning I understood in the context of my conversation in Mazamet.   Interesting.

ADDENDUM:  2015-02-05

I just came across two very well-done YouTube videos which give samples of France’s own 28 different accents, as well as the orignal 45 languages in France from the three major French language groups.   Check them out below:

  • France’s 28 accents:   See if you can pick out certain accents (notably from the North and North East) which share some traits with Canadian French accents.  It’s quite intriguing in this sense.

  • France’s 45 languages:    What I find fascinating about this video is there are some dialect-like languages which, as a speaker of Canadian French, I can seemly (and surprisingly) understand with little difficulty.   Two which stick out immediately as relatively easy to understand are Percheron and Poitevin (I’m still quite dumbstruck just how easy they are for me to understand – despite never having  heard them before yesterday).  I’m not sure others in France would understand them as easily.  They seem to share many more traits with our French on this side of the ocean than French in Europe.   I suppose it shows that the degrees of separation from the original French dialects which came to Canada in the 1600’s and that which we speak today across Canada and Québec may not have diverged as much as one would think.    Other’s which I surprisingly do not have major difficulties understanding are Picard (Ch’ti)Orléanais, Mainiot (which appears to share many traits in common with Acadian French in Canada), as well as Gallo.  All of them have a very strange “familiarity” to them (it was actually quite eerie listening to these dialects or languages for the first time… I would describe it as almost like having met a lost relative for the very first time!).

Huh!  Go figure!  😉

Anyway, if you want to read more on what I’m talking about here, check out the following Wikipedia articles:

The same YouTube Channel with the France language / accent audio tracks also has an audio track with Belgian accents (& dialects).   You can listen to them here:

  • 10 Belgian French accents:

  • 10 Languages of Wallonie:

Antoine Olivier Pilon (#96)

Occasionally in pop-culture, a force of nature comes along – someone who achieves so much fame, so quickly, that you would think they could not possibly achieve much more.   But I have a feeling that Antoine Olivier Pilon will beat these odds.   Born in 1997, he started out as a child actor at 12 years old.  At the ages of 13, 14, and 15 he continued to receive various roles on television and movies.   But a brief chain of events in 2013 changed his life forever.  He now is not only one of the best known faces in Québec and Canada, but also to movie audiences around the world.

In 2013, his name became intertwined with two huge names:  Indochine (one of France’s most popular and culturally significant music groups), and Xavier Dolan, one of Québec’s and Canada’s most critically award-winning movie writers and directors.

Pilon starred in Indochine’s controversial music video “College Boy”  in 2013.  The music video was directed by Xavier Dolan.  It was a statement against bullying, but was filmed using such a controversial portrayal of violence that it came with age-restriction caveats.   Nonetheless, not only was his likeness linked to Indochine, it also associated him with works directed by Xavier Dolan, which would forever change his life and career.

The next big one, as the co-star of Xavier Dolan’s movie “Mommy”, would launch him into the international spotlight (the previous post on “Mommy” can be viewed HERE).

At 17 years old and with several “best” category awards under his belt, Pilon has become an international heart-throb; instantly recognizable on the streets in Canada and France, as well as elsewhere.

Currently, he is a co-star in one of Montréwood’s hottest weekly TV drama series, Mémoires vives, on ICI Radio-Canada (1,165,000 weekly viewers), as well as one of the main characters in the youth television program Subito texto, on Télé-Québec.

Considering the major roles he has garnered, as well as the degree of acclaim, success and awards he has achieved,  decades of endless possibilities lie ahead of him.  I think we’re seeing more than just a star in the making (he’s already achieved the status of a start) – but rather the potential to be a future cultural icon.   Antoine Olivier Pilon is someone I believe we’ll be seeing a lot of.

When looking for clips of his work, please stick to official sites and do not pirate.  Our artists form part of our cultural fabric.

Alex Nevsky (#95)

Alex Nevsky is a singer who has been top of the charts for the last couple of years in Québec, and continues to be top of the charts today (I just checked, and his song “Vivre pauvre” is currently charting at #4 on Le grand décompte (the hit countdown) on Radio NRJ Montréal).

He’s quite young, but at 28 years old, he has achieved a phenomenal amount of success as a pop-singer.   He began to play the piano at a later age, then rapidly decided he wanted to study music (his home town, Granby, hosts the National College of Music).  He performed a bit, quickly garnered attention, and his career has been up up up ever since.

Nevsky is originally from the small city of Granby East of Montréal in the Eastern Townships.   In fact, Alex Nevsky is his stage name – his real name is Alexandre Parent (the stage name is inspired after the medieval Russian warrior, Alexander Nevsky).  His first album, in 2010 was produced by Yann Perreau, a big name in song-composing and producing circles in Québec (Perreau is one of the more influential contemporary personalities of pop music over the last 10 to 15 years).

Nevsky has been doing some major touring (around 50 dates in the past year), and various ticket dates are already on sale well into 2015 in various cities.

The following are some his better known songs, and those which are heard most often on the radio:

  • Les calories – #1 for three months
  • On leur a fait croire – #1 for more than a month
  • Milles raisons
  • Tuer le désir
  • Notre coeur
  • Les pas de la danse

Interestingly, he has publicly said he was a huge rap fan, and rap played a role in cementing his interest in music.  Yet his music seemingly has little (actually nothing) to do with rap.  I’d generally classify it as folk-pop-rock.

Alex Nevsky’s official website is http://alexnevsky.ca.

Now, when you think of Granby, other than the well-known zoo and the popular music festival (which most people associate with the town), you can also think of Alex Nevsky.

His music is for sale through various venues.  Please stick to official websites in your search for his music, and do not pirate (our artists are part of our cultural fabric).