Category Archives: Music

Day Nine • La Rochelle – La Tranche sur mer

We left La Rochelle in the late morning and once more lost the vélodyssée, so we just tried to keep the ocean on our left side and be patient about the furious passing cars. Few hours later, we changed of region, leaving Poitou Charentes for la Vendée and eventually we found back the vélodyssée.
I’ve told you how ridiculously small were the vélodyssée signs. We’ll in Vendée they’re just a mere sticker about five centimeters square. The game just got spicier.
We decided to halt for the night in La Tranche sur Mer, but nobody expected us there. By some kind of miracle I asked directions to a local and chatted a bit. He told me that a guy named Pedro built a cabin on the beach and that he loved to offer drinks to the traveling cyclists. We found the cabin and Pedro, the cabin is actually a nice beach bar.

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Pedro's cabin

We got our drinks, then performed a little show for the customers and Pedro invited us to stay for the night, after securing the roof against the rain.

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Pedro on his roof

That’s all folks!

Day Eight • La Rochelle

For this last day in La Rochelle, we decided to busk a little while in La Rochelle so inquired about the best place to do so. Apparently, musicians often play under the “grosse horloge” in the port. It’s close from a street with passing cars but the building itself has an awesome natural acoustic. When we got there a violinist was already using the spot so we waited in a café until he was done.

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We are now writing on our cardboard that we pedaled from Bordeaux to get there. The further we are the better the story is working. We performed about an hour and a half and decided to get back to our host’s but the sky had other plans so we got stuck in the port of La Rochelle for several hours by torrential rain that never seemed to end. Eventually we took the road under the rain and managed to get home. Of course five minutes after we got back the rain stopped and the sun laughed at us.

That’s all folks!

Day Three • Montalivet – Merschers sur Gironde

During this second night in the woods we were awaken around four o’clock by a torrential rain that lasted a couple of hours. We were prepared for this eventuality and quickly set up a roof with ropes and a canvas cover. Then we waited for the rain to stop, folded our camp and hit the road with wet feet.

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Some kilometers later we boarded a boat to cross the Gironde’s estuary.
Eventually we arrived in the best camping I’ve ever seen where a friend I had not seen in the last decade offered us shelter for the night.

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Entre mer et forêt, camping féérique

We performed a short set on the camping stage, then jammed with my friend and his brother, two very talented traditional music performers and eventually ended this long day.

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My friend Aurélien, Manuel and my ugly face

That’s all folks!

Léo

What I like the most with la chanson française is that the songwriters have the great ability to tell a complete story within three minutes. For those who don’t understand French, the delicious band VRP made a clip in the ’90s that is completing the sung story.

What really makes me love this song is the fact that it is the only sad song written by the VRP. All the others are either pathetic, funny or both. But this one is just the son of a prostitute’s tragic destiny. The text is beautiful and in my opinion, this song belongs to the street.

I feel like I have sung this song forever, in different streets, different cities, with maybe a hundred different musicians. Weirdly enough never have I felt sad singing it.

Despite the song being a street song, I rather found myself a quiet place with Marie Clergeaud and her camera to play it for you guys, I hope you will enjoy it even with my exhausted and slitghtly out of tune vocal cords.

Last but not least, this song gave a name to another awesome chanson française band. The very last words of the song “Les hurlements d’Léo” are now a popular band that is playing for more than 15 years carrying Leo’s screams.

That’s all!

Portez-vous bien!

B