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Jacques The Lad: Jacques Brel

Graeme Thomson, The Guardian, 6 February 2009

FIRST THINGS FIRST. Try to forget that Jacques Brel, the Belgian singer-songwriter, is indirectly responsible for Terry Jacks's 'Seasons in the Sun'. Forget also for a moment Scott Walker, whose obsession with Brel in the late 1960s tends to dominate discussions about the chansonnier, with largely obfuscatory results. Brel's much-translated songs of sex, death, bruised romance and equivocal cynicism have influenced generations of artists, but to understand why, it's necessary to return to the source.

Total word count of piece: 1720


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