If there was to be a French answer to Bob Dylan, surely it would be Johnny Hallyday. Both the careers of these rock stars have spanned 56 years- let that sink in. That’s almost twice some of our lifespans. Dylan is considered the best-selling artist of all time, having sold over 100 million records, but Hallyday is not for behind, having passed the 80 million mark. One aspect in which Hallyday does beat his American counterpart though is the number of studio albums he’s produced. While Dylan has put out an admirable 36 so far, the man born Jean-Phillipe Smet prides himself in 49 full-length albums. And on November 13, he will make it half a century when he releases ‘De l’amour‘.
Album number 50, Hallyday assures his fans, will be something special. “This is the most intimate of all my albums,” he said in an interview (but don’t they all say that?). The first taste of the new release the 72 year-old has offered is its title track. In the video for De l’amour, Hallyday defies his age and bucks the trend to transform himself into a modern day Elvis Presley. This is not the first time such comparisons are being drawn but it’s fascinating, and no doubt a challenge to aspiring rock stars, to see how faithful the Parisian has remained to his style in his five decades as a musician. Neither do you hear any ill effects of time on his powerful vocals (pray tell, what is your secret, Monsieur Hallyday?). The black-and-white clip rolls back the years to when folks used to jive, bop, swing and twist across dancefloors.
Let’s you and I take a history lesson while the geezers and dames cut a rug.
Miami Based, Internationally Known