Friday, June 22, 2018

Fête de la Musique

Our French friend Maurice told us that there would be music on June 21st, the summer solstice, so after watching France defeat Peru in a World Cup soccer game, we wandered over to the square near the river and found a park bench. People had gathered at the three surrounding bars, sitting at the outdoor tables ready for the entertainment.
I didn't get my hopes up too high. A gathering of people, young and old in orange polo shirts held instruments -- trumpets, saxophones, clarinets, flutes, drums. Could this motley gang of locals make good music?
There was another band setting up in the other corner of the square, and we had passed another band across town. Apparently, even our small town of 3,600 had several venues for music.
When the local band began, I put aside my skepticism.
We were surprised that they played in a circle with their backs to the everyone, watching their music leader, a trumpet player who won 3rd place for trumpeters in France.
I wasn't the only one who enjoyed the music. I videotaped these little guys dancing, and then panned over to the very drunk couple who were also dancing as if there was no one else in the square.

When the band finished, without a flourish, simply wandering away, I felt let down. I wanted more. Two other bands had set up. I wanted more music.
Instead, I got friends.
Jack and Jules wandered over from their house and we settled at an outdoor table, ordering Perrier for me, gin and tonic for Earl.
Before the next musician began, two other couples arrived as we pulled tables together and caught up before the guitarist and drummer entertained us with mostly American songs.
Friends and music
The highlight was definitely GLORIA, because he had such a tough time spelling G-L-O-Har-I-A. Another favorite was "Born to be WIDE." But who are we, with our barely passable French, to poke fun at someone singing American rock and roll for our pleasure.
The music was infectious, and at one point Earl videotaped these women in the background dancing joyously, with abandon, and possibly without the influence of alcohol.
When the third band began, and many drinks had been drunk, the music was a bit subdued so we straggled across town to another band playing Pink Floyd and "Walk on the Wild Side" so we could sing along "do, do, do, do, do."
One woman, a dancer at heart, visited several bands doing her interpretive dance. Her partner stood alongside watching.

We stayed out until midnight before climbing the hills toward our house. Friends and music are quite a nice way to begin the summer in our new French life. 


sillygirl said...

Born to be Wide - how American! A good time was had by all certainly!

Paulita said...

Sillygirl, Yes, we shouldn't have laughed. I'm sure if I tried to sing "Sur le pont d'Avignon" that I'd mess it up.

Just Me said...

What a fabulous evening. Thanks for sharing. I truly enjoyed this post and imaging what a delight it would would be to living there.

Paulita said...

Thanks, Just Me. I don't like to include videos on the blog but they sort of needed to capture the night.

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