Françoise Hardy

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Françoise Hardy
Francoise Hardy (1969).jpg
Françoise Hardy in December 1969
Born Françoise Madeleine Hardy
(1944-01-17) 17 January 1944 (age 73)
Paris, France
Residence 16th arrondissement, Paris[1]
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • writer
Spouse(s) Jacques Dutronc (m. 1981)[2]
Partner(s) Jean-Marie Périer (1962-1967)[3]
Children 1
Musical career
  • Vocals
  • guitar
Years active 1962–present
Associated acts

Françoise Madeleine Hardy (French: [fʁɑ̃.swaːz aʁ.di]; born 17 January 1944) is a French singer-songwriter. She made her musical debut in the early 1960s on Disques Vogue and found immediate success with her song "Tous les garçons et les filles". As a leading figure of the yé-yé movement, Hardy "found herself at the very forefront of the French music scene", and became "France's most exportable female singing star", recording in various languages, appearing in several movies, touring throughout Europe, and gaining admiration from musicians such as Bob Dylan and Mick Jagger.[2] With the aid of photographer Jean-Marie Périer, Hardy also begun modelling and soon became a popular fashion icon as well.[2][3]

As the yé-yé era drew to a close in the late 1960s, Hardy sought to reinvent herself, casting off the the fashionable girl next door image that Périer had created for her and abandoning the "cute" and catchy compositions that had characterized her repertoire up to that point;[2][4] working with more accomplished songwriters such as Leonard Cohen,[5] Serge Gainsbourg,[6] and Patrick Modiano.[7] Her 1971 album La question, represented an important turning point in her career, moving towards a more mature style; it remains her most acclaimed work and has generated a dedicated cult following over the years.[2].[8] The early 1970s also marked the beginning of Hardy's renowned involvement with astrology, becoming an expert and writer of the subject over the years.[2][8]

Hardy remains a popular figure in music and fashion,[9][10] and is considered an icon of French pop and the 1960s.[3][1]


Hardy grew up in the 9th arrondissement of Paris with her younger sister Michèle. Her parents lived apart when she was young; her father contributed little financially to the family and had little to do with his daughters. He was, however, persuaded by the girls' mother to buy Françoise a guitar for her birthday as a reward for passing her baccalauréat.[11]

Her early musical influences were the French chanson stars Charles Trenet and Cora Vaucaire[12] as well as Anglophone singers Paul Anka, the Everly Brothers, Cliff Richard, Connie Francis and Marty Wilde whom she heard on the English-language radio station, Radio Luxembourg.[11]

After a year at the Sorbonne she answered a newspaper advertisement looking for young singers. Hardy signed her first contract with the record label Vogue in November 1961. In April 1962, shortly after she left university, her first record "Oh Oh Chéri" appeared, written by Johnny Hallyday's writing duo. Her own flip side of the record, "Tous les garçons et les filles" became a success, riding the wave of Yé-yé music in France. It sold over a million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.[13] The track peaked at No. 36 in the UK Singles Chart in 1964.[14] She reportedly hated the song saying it was recorded "in three hours with the worst four musicians in Paris." She was dating photographer Jean-Marie Périer at this time and his shots featured on many of her record sleeves.[15]

Publicity in Billboard, April 1965

Hardy sings in French, English, Italian, German and has two interpretations in Spanish and one in Portuguese. In 1963 she came in fifth for Monaco in the Eurovision Song Contest with "L'amour s'en va". In 1963, she was awarded the Grand Prix du Disque from the Académie Charles Cros (see: Grand Prix du Disque for French Song).

In 1981, she married her long-time companion Jacques Dutronc, who is the father of her son, Thomas Dutronc, born in 1973. Hardy lives in Paris and Dutronc in Monticello, Corsica, although they reportedly remain legally married.[16]

In 1994, she collaborated with the British pop group Blur for their "La Comedie" version of "To The End". In 1995, she sang on Malcolm McLaren's single "Revenge of the Flowers". The song appears on his concept album Paris. In May 2000, she made a comeback with the album Clair-obscur on which her son played guitar and her husband sang the duet "Puisque vous partez en voyage". Iggy Pop and Étienne Daho also took part. She has also recorded a duet with Perry Blake who wrote two songs for Tant de belles choses. For this album, Hardy won the trophy "Female Artist of the Year" at the Victoires de la musique ceremony in 2005.

In 2012, Hardy marked her 50-year career by publishing her 27th album and both headings story L'Amour fou.

On 5 March 2015, after two years of silence, a second book was published under the title Avis non-autorisé... (Unauthorized opinion).[17] In this book, she reflects on old age, her interests and her annoyances. In interviews given, she has said that she does not at all want to write songs.[18]

Françoise Hardy in 1992

Because of her difficult upbringing Hardy became painfully shy – a trait which is still part of her character today.[11] When asked about her shyness in an interview with John Andrew, broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2011 she said:

I thought at first my parents were divorced — at that time it was not a good thing, it was a kind of shame. My father didn't help much financially my mother, and all the other girls, little girls, were dressed differently than I was — their parents had more money...I didn’t enjoy at all everything, the trappings, when all of a sudden you become very famous... [on being taken up by the fashion houses] it was work, things I had to do, a chore – I didn't enjoy it at all...It is quite impossible to stand – to be admired too much – it is not a normal situation...I don't like that at all...I am not comfortable with my professional life really, so the word 'icon' – it's as though you were talking about someone else, it's not me really...I feel happy when I'm on my bed, in my room with a good book.[11]

In popular culture[edit]


Hardy is mentioned in a poem by Bob Dylan, "Some other kinds of songs", which he wrote on the cover of his album Another Side of Bob Dylan, released in 1964.[19]


Hardy made a cameo appearance in a scene from Jean-Luc Godard's film Masculin, féminin (1966). She also played a minor role as the Mayor's assistant in the 1965 film What's New Pussycat? starring Peter Sellers, and appeared as Lisa, the girlfriend of fictional Italian driver Nino Barlini, in John Frankenheimer's film Grand Prix (1966). In a scene from director John G. Avildsen's film Save the Tiger (1973), Jack Lemmon's character Harry Stoner makes a reference to Hardy during a melancholy telephone call to his wife. Her song "Tous les garçons et les filles" played during the British film Metroland (1997) and Bernardo Bertolucci's The Dreamers (2003). The French movie 8 Femmes (2002) features her song "Message Personnel" as sung by the French actress Isabelle Huppert. Her recording of "Träume" plays during the end credits of François Ozon's Water Drops on Burning Rocks (Gouttes d'eau sur pierres brûlantes) (2000).[20]

Her song "L'Amitié" is played during the end credits of Denys Arcand's movie The Barbarian Invasions (Les Invasions barbares) which won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2003 (the main character had referenced her in an earlier scene in the movie). Her recording of the song "Il n'y a pas d'amour heureux", composed by Louis Aragon, is played in the Norwegian film Tatt av Kvinnen (2007).[21]

Hardy's 1962 debut album was referenced in Wes Anderson movie, Moonrise Kingdom (2012).

In the award-winning Greek film Attenberg (2010), her song "Tous les garçons et les filles" is played and sung by the two main characters in a lament of adolescent longing and loneliness.

In Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom (2012), her song "Le Temps de l'Amour" features prominently. The film's two lead characters, a pair of 12-year-old runaways in the year 1965, dance on the beach and have a romantic interlude as the song plays on a portable turntable. The female lead (Suzy) calls The "Yeh-Yeh" Girl from Paris! (1962) her "favorite record album", and it is the only album she packs when preparing to run away from home.[22]


Hardy's song "Ce petit cœur", was featured in the Gilmore Girls episode "French Twist". Her song "Ma jeunesse fout le camp" was also played in the television series La Femme Nikita's third season episode "Beyond the Pale" when Nikita pulls out an old record and plays the song. "Le Temps de l'amour" featured in the closing sequence of the first season finale of Helix. Her song "All Because of You" was covered by Jessica Sula and appeared in the first episode of the sixth season of Skins, Sula's character, Grace Blood covered the song to submit as her music final in college, but wasn't able to finish it due to a fatal car accident. "Tous les garçons et les filles" also appeared in the final episode of the 2015 British mini-series The Enfield Haunting.


Hardy's style is mentioned as inspiration for many fashion figures such as André Courrèges, Paco Rabanne, Alexa Chung and Nicolas Ghesquière, former head of the couture house Balenciaga and currently creative director of Louis Vuitton.[23]


Studio albums[edit]

Partial compilation albums[edit]

Selected singles[edit]

Year Single Chart positions
UK[14] AU
1962 "Tous les garçons et les filles" 36 -
"J'suis d'accord" - -
"Le temps de l'amour" - -
1963 "Le Premier Bonheur du jour" - -
"L'amour s'en va" - -
1964 "Only friends" ("Ton meilleur ami") - -
"Mon amie la rose" - -
"Je n'attends plus personne" - -
"Et même" 31 -
1965 "All Over the World" ("Dans le monde entier") 16 -
"L'Amitié" - -
"Only You Can Do It" ("Je veux qu'il revienne") - 22
1966 "La maison où j'ai grandi" ("Il ragazzo della via Gluck") - -
1967 "Just Call and I'll Be There" ("Le Temps des souvenirs") - 83
"Des ronds dans l'eau" - -
"Voilà" (listen [2]) - -
1968 "Comment te dire adieu ?" ("It Hurts to Say Goodbye") - -
1970 "Fleur de lune" - -
1973 "Message Personnel" - -
1978 "J'écoute de la musique saoûle" - -
2000 "Puisque vous partez en voyage" - -
2004 "Tant de belles choses" - -

Soundtrack releases[edit]

Selected filmography[edit]


  1. ^ a b Cañas, Gabriela (May 2, 2015). "La tercera edad de un icono del pop francés". El País (in Spanish). Ediciones El País, S.L. Retrieved November 14, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Françoise Hardy - Biography". Radio France Internationale. March 2013. Retrieved October 27, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c Andrew, John (November 26, 2011). "Tour de Françoise: A writer catches up with 1960s icon Françoise Hardy". Daily Mail. DMG Media. Retrieved October 27, 2016. 
  4. ^ Galán, Lola (February 15, 2013). "La 'chanson' de la musa madura". El País (in Spanish). Ediciones El País, S.L. Retrieved October 27, 2016. Atrás quedan los temas de su primera etapa, cancioncillas pegadizas de las que abomina. Hasta La question, de 1971, a partir de la cual se inicia una segunda época de la que sí está orgullosa. 
  5. ^ "Classic Music Review: La Question by Françoise Hardy". 50thirdand3rd. May 27, 2015. Retrieved October 29, 2016. 
  6. ^ Lima, Carlos Eduardo (October 17, 2014). "Françoise Hardy e Suas Meninas" (in Portuguese). Monkeybuzz. MTV Brasil. Retrieved November 21, 2016. 
  7. ^ "Françoise Hardy, de l'idole à l'icône". L'Express (in French). Groupe Altice Média. November 13, 2008. Retrieved November 29, 2016. 
  8. ^ a b Rigoulet, Laurent (April 9, 2016). "Françoise Hardy en question". Télérama (in French). Groupe Le Monde. Retrieved October 25, 2016. 
  9. ^ "Françoise Hardy", in Unknown legends of rock 'n' roll: psychedelic unknowns, mad geniuses, punk pioneers, lo-fi mavericks & more, Richie Unterberger, Hal Leonard Corporation, 1998, ISBN 0-87930-534-7 p. 177 ff
  10. ^ Belle and Sebastian: Just a Modern Rock Story, Paul Whitelaw, Macmillan, 2005, ISBN 0-312-34137-7 p. 64
  11. ^ a b c d "Falling for Francoise". BBC Radio 4 programme. BBC. 21 May 2011. Retrieved 22 May 2011. 
  12. ^ Anon. "Françoise Hardy". RFI Musique. Retrieved 22 May 2011. 
  13. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London, UK: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 147. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  14. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 243. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  15. ^ MOJO, Collections, French Pop Winter 2001
  16. ^ Autobiography written by Françoise Hardy, Le désespoir des singes… et autres bagatelles, Robert Laffont ed., Paris, 2008, pp 228–230.
  17. ^ Released 5 March 2015 by Éditions des Équateurs.
  18. ^ Le Parisien dimanche , n° 21926, 8 March 2015 [1]
  19. ^ FRANÇOISE HARDY (very brief biography, Retrieved 9 November 2012.
  20. ^ "Water Drops on Burning Rocks". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  21. ^ "Tatt av Kvinnen". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 9 November 2012. 
  22. ^ Innocence in Amber: Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom Archived 30 May 2012 at the Wayback Machine.. Retrieved 9 November 2012.
  23. ^ Balenciaga Fall 2005 Ready-to-Wear Collection on Runway Review. Retrieved 9 November 2012.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
François Deguelt
Monaco in the Eurovision Song Contest
Succeeded by