The French musician died at the age of 86. It became famous in 1966 with the film's soundtrack A man and a woman, by Claude Lelouch.
From this discreet man who has fallen out of public life, we remember the melodies he has signed. For cinema, of course, but also for many singers. Francis Lai died at the age of 86. He was the Christian Eras, mayor of his homeland, Nice, who announced it, adding: "I will soon propose to his family to give his name to an emblematic part of our city."
It was with Claude Lelouch that this son of a farmer had approached the music of the film since 1965. The two men met through Pierre Barouh, the same musician. With the latter, Lai had composed some songs, including Love is much stronger than us. A subject that Lelouch liked so much that he wanted to be able to use it for his next film. This film will be a man and a woman. This feature-length film, which gave a great place in music, was going to reveal the three men. For Francis Lai, it was the beginning of a dazzling career. Four years after the liberation of Chabadabada, Nice won the Grail: an Oscar. He was awarded Hollywood for his work in Love Story in 1970. He then returned to compose for his beloved director, signing at least 33 points for Claude Lelouch. "He tells me the story in such detail that I can see the pictures. In the end, it leaves much more freedom," he explained.
One of the most beautiful alliances between a director and a composer
Like Nino Rota-Federico Fellini, Ennio Morricone-Sergio Leone and Michel Legrand-Jacques Demy duo, he was with the director of Itinéraire de un spoiled child that he formed one of the most beautiful alliances between director and composer. "It was with him that I had the greatest synergy," he said eagerly. He's still got time to work with many other directors. Claude Zidi, Henri Verneuil, René Clément, Dino Risi, Philippe de Broca and Georges Lautner have called for his services.
Francis Lai loved the form of a song and laughed not to be more devoted to it. His greatest success in the field remains By bike, which was the joy of Yves Montand, for the words of stray friend Pierre Barouh. It had composed for many singers. We remember Nicole Croisille, her beloved performer. But also Edith Piaf, Mireille Mathieu, Isabelle Aubret, Petula Clark or Jacqueline Dulac sang. He has often collaborated with artists from Quebec Fabienne Thibeault, Ginette Reno, Nicole Martin and Martine Chevrier. In addition, he had composed the FR3 TV channel for his launch in 1974. It was an opportunity for him to concentrate on electronic instruments: Martenot waves, analog synths, electronic accordions.
In April 2016, the 50th anniversary of his registrationA man and a woman had celebrated the release of an anthology of his works on 7 CDs. An invaluable heritage for a musician who has remained in love with melodies until the end.
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