Les Compagnons de la chanson was a French singing group, founded in Lyon (Vichy France), in 1941,[1during the Second World War. The Group continued for over forty years and gave his last concert on 14 February 1985.


[hide]*composition 1


The group existed until 1969 from nine singers: three tenors, three baritones and three basses, which close harmony singing. For a long time the composition:

  • Guy Baldwin (1920-1969), bass;
  • Jean Broussolle (1920-1984), baritone;
  • Jean-Pierre Calvet (1925-1989), tenor;
  • Jo Frachon (1919-1992), bass;
  • Jean-Louis Jaubert (1920), bass;
  • Hubert Lancelot (1923-1995), baritone;
  • Fred Mella (1924), tenor;
  • René Mella (1926), tenor;
  • Gérard Sabbath (1926), baritone.

After the death of Guy Bourguignon in 1969, place no longer filled up and the Compagnons went further with eight men.

Jean Broussolle left the group in 1972. His successor was Michel Cassez (1935), who acted under the stage name Gaston.

Others that short time were part of the group, were Paul Buissonneau (1926), Marc Herrand (1925) and Jean Albert (1920-2003).

The musical director was based successively at Marc Herrand, Jean Broussolle Cassez and Michel.


Louis Liébard founded a youth choir In 1941 under the name Les Compagnons de la Musique. In the spring 1942 started eight male members of the choir to act collectively. They made their first recordings of folk songs, including Perrine était servante. In February 1946, they decided to continue under the name without it chorus Les Compagnons de la chanson. When Paul Buissonneau came on, they were with his nine.

In 1944 they had during a performance in Paris know Édith Piaf . In 1946 they put together with her the song Les trois cloches on the plate, that was a great success. The following years they worked together intensively with Piaf. They performed often with Piaf on, toured with her through the United States and Canada and made even more shots with her (such as Dans les prisons de Nantes and Céline).

After 1950, the band with Piaf looser. In these thirty-five years, they made a large number of plates, which are generally sold well, and they toured intensively. So they visited the United KingdomItaly, the Soviet UnionBrazil, the Middle EastJapan and the United States again. Also in Netherlands they performed, for example during the Grand Gala du Disque of september 1962.

In 1954 under the auspices of Radio Luxembourg , they made a tour of more than half a year. In 1959 they followed the Tour de France. They took care of every stage In a performance. In 1962 they performed five months on end on in the theater Bobino in Paris.

The Group met regularly in front of the television, and not just in France. In 1948 they made a movie with Édith Piaf, Neuf garçons, un cœur. In 1957 they worked on a operettaMinnie Moustache, partly written by Compagnons-member Jean Broussolle.

In december 1980 the Group announced that he was going to stop. The farewell tour lasted almost five years. On February 14, 1985 in their very last concert held the Compagnons pavillon Baltard in Nogent-sur-Marne.

Fred Mella continued with a solo career. Michel Cassez started a jazz band.


The songs that always had to be the Compagnons sang, arranged for the special occupancy of the group. Did Marc Herrand, Jean Broussolle and Michel Cassez successively.

They recorded many songs of well-known fellow artists such as Charles AznavourGilbert BécaudGeorges Brassens , and Henri Salvadorin addition to self-penned songs.

The Group also put translations of foreign songs on the record. Below are the Kalinka, Russian folk song Tom Dooley of The Kingston Trio and Le sous-marin vert, a translation of Yellow submarine. The companions also sang occasionally in other languages. Les trois cloches they took for example also on in English as The Three Bells.

Known songs[Edit]Edit

  • Allez savoir pourquoi
  • Alors raconte
  • Au temps de Pierrot et Colombine
  • Ce bonheur-là
  • Céline
  • Ce n'est pas un adieu
  • Cheveux fous et lèvres roses
  • Comment va la vie
  • Dans les prisons de Nantes
  • C'est Doux doux
  • Gondolier
  • Your song chez nous
  • Kalinka
  • La Chanson de Lara
  • La chorale
  • La Costa Brava
  • La grande dame
  • La gymnastique
  • La licorne
  • La longue marche
  • La mamma
  • La Marie
  • La mouche
  • La petite Julie
  • Le bleu de l ' été
  • Le chant de Mallory
  • Le galérien
  • Le Marchand de bonheur
  • L'enfant de bohème
  • Le prisonnier de la tour
  • Les adventurers
  • Les cavaliers du ciel
  • Les comedians
  • Les couleurs du temps
  • Le sous-marin vert
  • Les trois cloches
  • Le temps des étudiants
  • Mon espagnole
  • Parle plus bas
  • Perrine était servante
  • Roméo
  • Si tous les gars du monde
  • Si tu vas à Rio
  • Tom Dooley
  • Un Mexicain [2]
  • Verte campagne
  • Y aura toujours


  • Fred Mella, Knife maîtres enchanteurs, ed. Flammarion, 2006 (ISBN 2-0806-8883-9)
  • Hubert Lancelot, Nous, les Compagnons de la chanson, ed. Aubier-Montaigne, 1993 (ISBN 2-7007-2821-1)
  • Marc Herrand, Yvette Giraud, La route enchantée, ed. du Signe, 2005 (ISBN 2-.7468-1584-2)
  • Christian Fouinat, Les Compagnons de la Chanson: des marchands de bonheur: Allez savoir pourquoi!, Decal'Age Productions, édition 2007 (ISBN 2-9524-1171-9)
  • Jean-Jacques Blanc, Ils étaient Compagnons de la Musique, ed. Decal'Age Productions, 2008 (ISBN 2- -1176-9524 X)
  • Cassez et Michel Yves Turbergue, Gaston raconte les compagnons, ed. Carrère Lafon, 1985 (ISBN 2-86804-179-5)

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