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Jacques Brel : Ne me quitte pas and greatest hits

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Album Review

One of the seemingly innumerable Philips-era Jacques Brel compilations issued during the 1970s, Ne Me Quitte Pas is a double-album extravaganza rounding up five songs apiece from his first, second, and fourth albums and three from his too-frequently overlooked third, then rounded out by an apparently random selection of EP cuts. There are, of course, few surprises in store. The title track (better known to the Anglo-American public as "If You Go Away") and "Quand on N'a Que l'Amour," Brel's first hit single, are the most immediate selling points for purchasers seeking a quick introduction to the catalog — "Sur La Place," "Les Flamandes," and "La Mort" ("My Death" can be similarly highlighted. Where the interest lies for the more serious fan is in the inclusion of such seldom heard sides as "Voir," "Le Prochain Amour," and the duet "Demain L'on Se Marie." None rank among the best of Brel, but, in breaking the domination of album cuts, they do offer something different — and that, in the fast-filling world of Brel collections, is certainly nothing to be sneezed at!

Biography

Born: 08 April 1929 in Brussels, Belgium

Genre: French Pop

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s

Singer/songwriter Jacques Brel created and performed a catalog of literate, thoughtful, and theatrical songs that brought him a large, devoted following in France. His audience eventually extended internationally, making him a major influence on English-speaking writers and performers including Leonard Cohen and David Bowie, while translations of his songs were recorded by a wide range of performers from the Kingston Trio to Frank Sinatra. Born in Brussels, Belgium, on April 8, 1929, Brel was the...
Full bio

Top Albums and Songs by Jacques Brel