Daniel Lavoie

In 1983, the song 'Ils s'aiment' (two million copies sold) thrust Lavoie into the forefront of French-speaking singer-songwriters. It conveyed the anguish of young people in the 1980's, its tense, haunting melody matching the sensitivity of a new generation born with the atom bomb.


Lavoie, Daniel

 Daniel Lavoie. Singer-songwriter, producer, b Dunrea, south of Brandon, Man, 17 Mar 1949. B LITT French literature (Manitoba). His mother was a musician. In 1967, the only candidate from Manitoba, he won the competition for singer-songwriters of CBC's television program 'Jeunesse oblige'. He played and sang in the groups Spectre and Dieu vous aime, in English and French, prior to touring Quebec in 1970. Two singles, 'Marie Connue' and 'S'endormir pour oublier (une rose),' were followed by an album, À court terme; the song 'J'ai quitté mon île' from that LP was taken up in France, Portugal and South America. Following a second tour of Quebec, he recorded 1977 Berceuse pour un lion, which was also launched in France and featured several hits ('Dans le temps des animaux,' 'La Vérité sur la vérité,' 'Berceuse pour un lion'). He settled in Quebec during that period. He won a Félix Award as male performer of the year in 1980 and again in 1981. He subsequently performed in Paris (at Bobino), at the Bourges Festival, and in Switzerland and Belgium.

In 1983, the song 'Ils s'aiment' (two million copies sold) thrust Lavoie into the forefront of French-speaking singer-songwriters. It conveyed the anguish of young people in the 1980's, its tense, haunting melody matching the sensitivity of a new generation born with the atom bomb. The show that ensued, L'Hôtel des rêves, highlighted the theatrical abilities of a performer now as much in demand in France as in Quebec. Lavoie then embarked on a tour of the province, followed by a tour of France including a week at the Olympia, in Paris. He won award upon award: three Félix (performer, song and LP of the year) in 1984, a gold medal at the MIDEM in Cannes, and the prix Victoire (awarded for French-language album of the year). Vue sur la mer and Long courrier confirmed the success of this artist nicknamed 'man of the plains'. Lavoie composed the theme song for the film Les Longs Manteaux, and he acted in the movie Le Fabuleux Voyage. He has produced records by Hart Rouge, a group from Manitoba. In 1990, the Francofolies held a show in his honour, La Fête à Daniel Lavoie.

Alain Brunet said about the shy, romantic Lavoie (Montreal La Presse, 5 Apr 1991): 'He is one of French-speaking America's very beautiful voices, he has a wonderful sense of studio work and music production; actually, he is a mature singer-songwriter'. Lavoie also captured the Wallonie-Québec prize (1986), the Renonciat trophy for French-language song of the year for 'Je voudrais voir New York' (1987), and Félix awards for greatest achievement outside Quebec (1987) and pop-rock album of the year (1990).

Discography

À court terme. 1975. Lon LFS-9013

Berceuse pour un lion. 1977. Deram XDEF-147

Nirvana bleu. 1979. Apex AFL-1502 and Trafic TFMD-889 (CD)

Aigre-doux, How Are You. 1981. WEA XWEA-92007

Cravings. 1981. Sefel JO-601

Tension attention! 1983. Kébec-Disc KD-584 and Trafi TFMD-8725 (CD)

Tips. 1986. Cap ST-12568

Vue sur la mer. 1986. Trafic TFX-1956-19

Olympia 87. 1987. Trafic OTF-8726

Daniel Lavoie. Trafic TF-8729

Long courrier. 1990. Trafic TF-8950

Douce heure. 1991. Trafic TFD-8956


Further Reading

  • Laurier, Andrée. 'A change of direction, a step up to the sublime' / 'Le Secret de Daniel Lavoie: le sublime sans le ridicule,' Canadian Composer / Compositeur canadien, 201, May-Jun 1985

    Robine, Marc. 'Daniel Lavoie,' Paroles et musique, Jan 1986

    Pourcel, Jean-Marc. 'Daniel Lavoie, attention talent!,' Pélerin Magazine, 11 Sep 1987

    Homier-Roy, René. 'Daniel Lavoie allegro moderato,' Châtelaine, Mar 1988

    Filion, Sylvain-Claude. 'Chronique d'un homme heureux,' CanComp, vol 2, Spring 1991