Monday, 31 October 2016

Je T'Aime Serge: Mick Harvey Questions and Answers in London

A great opportunity to question music legend Mick harvey about his Serge Gainsbourg cover albums at an event at the Institut Francais du Royaume-Uni in London tomorrow night.

Mick Harvey has of course had an astonishing career beyond these albums, as a founder member of Australian band The Birthday Party who were one of the pioneering acts in the in the UK and Europe in the aftermath of punk. He continued to work with Birthday party vocalist Nick Cave as a founder member of the Bad Seeds where he was a cornerstone of the band  for 25 years.

He was also an integral part of  the band Crime and the City Solution, who released several albums throughout the 80s but never really got the recognition they deserved.

His first solo album was a collection of Serge Gainsbourg covers entitled Intoxicated Man released in 1995, where he performed some of Serge's best known songs in English. He followed this with a second volume of Gainsbourg covers in 1997 entitled Pink Elephants.

I'm pretty sure it was Harvey's covers that helped introduce Gainsbourg to many of those who now hold his work dear. Gainsbourg was very much an unknown in the UK for much of his career despite his success at the end of the 60s. At best he was regarded by many simply as a novelty act or a one hit wonder. Mick Harvey showed that Gainsbourg was a genius in any language.

June 2016 saw the release of a third volume of Gainsbourg covers - Delerium tremens. A fourth volume is in the pipeline and scheduled for release early in 2017.

Tomorrow night Mick Harvey will be speaking about this and the two previous releases with author Simon Price, about his relationship with Gainsbourg's work and the challenges of his legacy.

If you're in London, it's an event not to miss.

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