New York, New York - July 27, 2011 (10:50pm)
Sylvie Vartan: This next song is about a river. I was born in Bulgaria and my parents had to leave the country because of the communist regime. I was 7 years old* when we arrived in Paris and we crossed that river, it was called La Maritza and then it became a symbol for freedom. La Maritza:
French lyrics: La Maritza c’est ma rivière comme la Seine est la tienne mais il n’y a que mon père maintenant qui s’en souvienne, quelquefois. De mes dix premières années, il ne me reste plus rien pas la plus pauvre poupée, plus rien qu’un petit refrain d’autrefois. Il faisait: La la la la... Tous les oiseaux de ma rivière nous chantaient la liberté, moi je ne comprenais guère mais mon père, lui savait, écouter : Quand l’horizon s’est fait trop noir, tous les oiseaux sont partis sur les chemins de l’espoir et nous on les a suivis à Paris. [Parlé:] De mes dix premières années, il ne reste plus rien... rien [chanté] et pourtant les yeux fermés, moi j’entends mon père chanter ce refrain : La la la la... [Parlé:] Merci. You sing very well!
Lyrics translated from French to English: The Maritza is my river like the Seine is yours but it is only my father who now remembers this, sometimes. Since my first ten years, I have nothing left not even the poorest doll but only a little refrain from yesteryear. They sang: La la la la... All the birds from my river sang to us about freedom, I could not understand at all but my father, he knew, listen: When the horizon became too dark, all the birds left on the path of hope and we followed them to Paris. [Spoken:] Since my early years, nothing is left... nothing [sung] yet with my eyes closed, I hear my father sing this refrain: La la la la... [Spoken:] Thank you. You sing very well!
Just like Sylvie Vartan, I was born in Bulgaria and my family had to leave the country because of the communist regime. I was 6 years old when we arrived in Paris and it was with a group of 4 people including my mom, my uncle Boubi, a cousin and myself. By some very unusual coincidence, Sylvie also arrived in Paris with a group of 4 people including her parents, her brother Eddie and herself!
*Sylvie Vartan was actually 8 years old (not 7) when she arrived in Paris. She was born on August 15, 1944 and arrived in Paris with her mom, her dad and her brother Eddie on Christmas eve in 1952. She recorded her first song Panne d’essence, which means “Out of gas” in French, only 8 years later at the age of 16, and it became a big hit on the radio in France back in the summer of 1961.