Trois petites notes (bis, en anglais)

Trois petites notes (bis, en anglais)

trwah puh-teet nut (beess, ah nah-GLAY) The audio file is below. Click to listen to the song!

Three little notes (again, in English)

We’re on a roll here! Remembering the things we are trying to forget is so entertaining. Here’s another post about the Yves Montand song we talked about yesterday .

First the sound file, in case you want to listen again, and then the English translation:

Three little notes of music
Have closed up shop
In the depths of memory
Their racket is done
They’ve turned over a new leaf
And gone to sleep

But one day without a word of warning
They come back into your memory

You wanted to forget
A brazen little tune
In the summer streets
You’ll never forget
A street, a summer,
A girl who was humming.

La, la, la, la, I love you
Sang the refrain
La, la, my love
Words without sublimity
As long as the rhyme
Always brings

A vacation romance
Which, stabbing, sets you off again
True: she was so pretty
So fresh and blooming
And you didn’t gather her in
True: for her first shiver
She offered you a song
To be sung in unison

La, la, la, la, every dream
Rhymes with “done”
Yours doesn’t make any sense
Over before it started
As long as a dance
The space of a refrain

Three little notes of music
That nag you
From the bottom of your memory
Raise a cruel stage-curtain
On a thousand and one troubles
That refuse to die.

The translation is my own, and I chose not to try to make it poetic or musical, or to match the meter of the French. That pretty much always destroys the original.

One of the things that I like about this song is its rhythm. It establishes a simple pattern, one-two-three, one-two-three like a waltz. But the moment the expectation is set in the accompaniment, the song starts off-kilter. The pattern (6-2-6 lines) occurs twice, but disintegrates towards the end, and the song finishes with a four-note descending scale that sounds as definitive as it can be.

And that tinkling piano accompaniment? It’s strongly reminiscent of a music box, especially as it “winds down” at the end.

*Some mobile phones, such as Blackberries, won’t display the audio player. If no player appears, here’s an alternative link to the audio file:

Trois Petites Notes De Musique

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s