'C'est la belle Françoise'
'C'est la belle Françoise'. Song originating in France and sung in Canada as early as 1650 by the French soldiers who fought the Iroquois. It describes a soldier's farewell to his fiancée. Ernest Gagnon in Chansons populaires du Canada (Quebec City 1865) gives three versions, as different in their music as in the turns of phrase in their verse - in one instance 'ma luron lurette'; in another 'blanc loup-marin, ma lon la'; in a third 'ma dondaine'. The text appeared among others in La Nouvelle Lyre canadienne (Montreal 1882) under the title 'La Belle Françoise'. Text and music are found in several collections, notably Canadian Folk-Life and Folk-Lore by William Parker Greenough (New York 1897). The tune has been harmonized by Alfred La Liberté (Le Passe-Temps, July 1945), Claude Champagne (Waterloo 1960), and others. For the LP MB 7899-7900 Champagne directed the Le Petit Ensemble vocal of the École normale de musique of Montreal in a performance of his arrangement. Among the numerous LPs of other arrangements is one by Alan Mills and Hélène Baillargeon (RCI/RCA CS 100-4/5-ACM 39 CD).