No trip to France is complete without buying a compilation CD of French chart hits du jour. The biggest musical revelation of my weekend in Pas de Calais was a duet between Essex boy Olly Murs and Corsican star Alizée.
The British singer had enjoyed a top five hit in the UK with the song Dear Darlin’. It is one of my favourite British hits of the past couple of years. He has now re-recorded it for France’s record-buyers: half is now in English, half in French. Mercifully, Murs stuck to English for his part, leaving Alizée to perform the French lyrics.
Although there is nothing to suggest the pair spent any time together in the studio, they did appear live to promote the song.
The pair have in common that they both found fame through TV shows. Murs made a name for himself in the 2009 series of the X Factor. Alizée has been around longer, having shot to fame ten years earlier in Graines de Star. She followed her win in 2000 with the hit Moi… Lolita. Written by Mylène Farmer, the song sold over two million copies around the world.
Last year, she won TV’s Danse avec les Stars (France’s version of Dancing with the Stars) and is back in the studio working on a new album, to be released next month. Hopefully, her collaboration with Murs gave her career a lift too.
Either way, the song proved the perfect soundtrack to our return journey from France on Sunday.