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Pierre Delanoë

Pierre Delanoë
File:Pierre Delanoë le 25 décembre 1982.jpg
Christmas 1982
Background information
Born (1918-12-16)December 16, 1918
Paris, France
Died December 27, 2006(2006-12-27) (aged 88)
Poissy, France
Genres Chanson
Occupation(s) Civil servant, songwriter, author
Years active 1945–2006

Pierre Delanoë (16 December 1918 - 27 December 2006), born Pierre Charles Marcel Napoleon Leroyer in Paris, France, was a French songwriter/lyricist who wrote for dozens of singers such as Edith Piaf, Charles Aznavour, Petula Clark, Johnny Hallyday, and Mireille Mathieu.[1] [2] Delanoë was his grandmothers maiden name.

After studying and receiving a law degree, Delanoë began worked as a tax collector and then a tax inspector. After World War II he met Gilbert Bécaud and started a career as a lyricist. He did sing with Bécaud in clubs in the beginning, but this did not last long. He has written some of France's most beloved songs with Bécaud, including "Et maintenant", translated into English as "What Now My Love", which was covered by artists including Agnetha Fältskog, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, The Supremes, Sonny & Cher, Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass, and The Temptations. "Je t'appartiens" ("Let It Be Me") was covered by The Everly Brothers, Tom Jones, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Nina Simone and Nofx. "Crois-moi ça durera" was covered as "You'll See" by Nat King Cole.

In addition to Bécaud he wrote for Édith Piaf ("La Goualante du pauvre Jean"), Tino Rossi, Hugues Aufray, Michel Fugain ("Je n'aurai pas le temps", "Une belle histoire"), Nicoletta, Nana Mouskouri, Michel Polnareff, Gérard Lenorman ("La Ballade des gens heureux"), Joe Dassin ("L'Été indien", "Les Champs-Elysées", "Et si tu n'existais pas"), Nicole Rieu ("Et bonjour à toi l'artiste") and Michel Sardou ("Les Vieux Mariés", "Le France"). He wrote a passionate song about Joan of Arc in "La demoiselle d'Orléans" for Mireille Mathieu. The final lyric: "When I think of all I have given France... and she has forgotten me" was truly how the singer felt as she was made a caricature by the Communists in power.[3]

His song "Dors, mon amour" performed by André Claveau won the Eurovision Song Contest 1958. The Italian entry Volare by Domenico Modugno came in third, but sold 22 million records worldwide.

In 1955 Delanoë helped to launch Europe 1 as Director of Programs, the first French radio station to program popular music in a modern way.

Pierre Delanoë served as President of SACEM in 1984 and 1986, then from 1988 to 1990, and 1992 to 1994. He was awarded the Poets Grand Prize in 1997 by the institution.

On 31 March 2004 he was given France's highest culture award, Commander l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.[4]

He created some controversy in July 2006 after expressing his dislike for rap music, saying that it is "a form of expression for people incapable of making music" and "not music but vociferations, eructations (belching)".[5][2]

He died of cardiac arrest during the early morning on 27 December 2006 in Poissy, France. He is buried in the Cimetière de Fourqueux (Yvelines), which is just southeast of Poissy. His wife Micheline died in 2015.


  • Pierre Delanoë, La vie en chantant, éditions René Julliard, 1980
  • Pierre Delanoë, Le surnuméraire, éditions René Julliard, 1982
  • Pierre Delanoë, Le 19è trou, éditions Robert Laffont, 1984
  • Pierre Delanoë, en collaboration avec A. J. Lafaurie et Philippe Letellier, Golfantasmes, éditions Albin Michel, 1986
  • Pierre Delanoë, La retraite aux flambeaux, éditions Robert Laffont, 1986
  • Pierre Delanoë, Poésies et chansons, éditions Seghers, 1986
  • Pierre Delanoë, Et à part ça qu'est-ce que vous faites ?, éditions Michel Lafon, 1987
  • Pierre Delanoë, Comment écrire une chanson, éditions Paul Beuscher, 1987
  • Pierre Delanoë, avant-propos de Jean-Marc Natel, Paroles à lire, poèmes à chanter, éditions Le Cherche Midi, 1990
  • Pierre Delanoë, entretiens avec Alain-Gilles Minella, La chanson en colère, éditions Mame, 1993
  • Pierre Delanoë, illustrations de Barberousse, Les comptines de Titine, éditions Hemma Éditions, 1995
  • Pierre Delanoë, illustrations de Barberousse, Les comptines d'Eglantine, éditions Hemma Éditions, 1995
  • Pierre Delanoë, préface de Jean-Marc Natel, voix de Charles Aznavour à Jean-Claude Brialy en passant par Renaud, Anthologie de la poésie française de Charles d'Orléans à Charles Trenet, éditions du Layeur, 1997
  • Pierre Delanoë, en collaboration avec Alain Poulanges, préface de Gilbert Bécaud, La vie en rose, éditions Plume, 1997
  • Pierre Delanoë, illustrations de Barberousse, musique Gérard Calvi, interprètes Jacques Haurogné, Juliette, Fabienne Guyon, Pierre Delanoë, Xavier Lacouture et Catherine Estourelle, La comptine à Titine, éditions Hemma Éditions, 1998
  • Pierre Delanoë, préface de Michel Tournier de l'Académie Goncourt, Des paroles qui chantent, éditions Christian Pirot, 1999
  • Pierre Delanoë, préface de Gilbert Bécaud, Le témoin était aveugle, éditions Les vents contraires, 2000
  • Pierre Delanoë, préface de Jean-Marc Natel, narration de Brigitte Lahaie, musique de Guy Boyer, La poésie dans le boudoir, éditions du Layeur, 2000
  • Pierre Delanoë, préface de Jean Orizet, D'humeur et dhumour, éditions Mélis éditions, 2002
  • Pierre Delanoë, Tous des putes, éditions Mélis éditions, 2002
  • Pierre Delanoë, en collaboration avec Jean Beaulne, Pierre Delanoë…Et maintenant, éditions City Éditions, 2004

External links


  1. ^ "French lyricist Delanoe dies at age 88". International Herald Tribune. 
  2. ^ a b "Writer of more than 4,000 songs". London: The Independent. 30 December 2006. Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  3. ^ Bonini, Emmanuel. La véritable Mireille Mathieu. Paris: Pygmalion, 2005.
  4. ^ "Discours de Jean-Jacques Aillagon lors de la remise des insignes de Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et Lettres à Pierre Delanoë, auteur". 
  5. ^ O'Connor, Patrick (10 January 2007). "Prolific French lyricist who kept the tradition of the chanson alive at home and abroad". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 22 May 2010. 

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