Ma première chanson en français

My friend Ruth asked a couple of months ago whether I might be willing to see if I could come up with a new song for the opening ceremony – or vernissage, as they say around here – of a photography exhibition about inclusion. The catch: it would ideally be in French.

I had often thought about trying to write something in French, so this was the perfect challenge to spur me into action. The end result is a song called Moi Aussi. Here’s an acoustic demo recording. (If the player below doesn’t work for you, you’ll find it in the Demos collection.)

The lyrics are inspired by the quotations that accompany the photos in the exhibition, which feature people with Down syndrome.

The exhibition, which grew out of a similar initiative in Ireland, aims to raise awareness, discussion and understanding of Down syndrome in Switzerland. It has visited a number of cities already and will open in the Geneva commune of Vernier next week. I’m looking forward to singing the song at the vernissage.

You can find out more about the exhibition in Vernier here – and about the Moi Aussi Foundation here.

The lyrics of the song are below. I’ve also added a translation below – it’s neither a direct translation nor one designed to be sung, but I think it conveys the meaning reasonably well.

Moi aussi

Tu as tes espoirs, tu sais ce que tu veux,
Tu exploreras des terres inconnues,
Tu fais de ton mieux, au moins en grande partie,
Et moi aussi, moi aussi.

Tu as sûrement tes héros préférés,
Tu aimes la guitare, tu aimes danser et chanter,
Tu adore les fous rires et les câlins,
Et moi aussi, moi aussi.

Moi aussi, parfois je ris, j’ai peur, je doute, je rêve aussi,
Moi non plus, je n’aime pas être exclus,
Je suis ici, moi aussi.

Tu subis des petites crises de temps en temps,
Mais tu entends croquer la vie à pleines dents,
Tu connais l’amour, son pouvoir infini,
Et moi aussi, moi aussi.

Moi aussi, parfois je ris, j’ai peur, je doute, je rêve aussi,
Moi non plus, je n’aime pas être exclus,
Je suis ici, moi aussi.

Moi aussi, je mange ma soupe,
Moi aussi, j’ai peur du loup,
Moi aussi, je fais des plans,
Moi aussi, j’ai ma chanson,

Moi aussi, je sors le soir,
Moi aussi, je veux savoir,
Moi aussi, je perds la tête,
Moi aussi, je m’inquiète,

Moi aussi, je cris parfois,
Moi aussi, je saute de joie,
Moi aussi, j’ai ma propre voix,
Moi aussi, j’ai les mêmes droits,

Moi aussi, je me sens bien,
Moi aussi, je suis moi-même,
Moi aussi, je suis comme toi,
Et toi comme moi, comme toi, comme moi…

Moi aussi, parfois je ris, j’ai peur, je doute, je rêve aussi,
Moi non plus, je n’aime pas être exclus,
Je suis ici, moi aussi, moi aussi.

 

Just like you

You have your hopes, you know just what you want,
You’re going to explore uncharted territories,
You try to do your best, at least most of the time,
And I do too, I do too.

For sure you have your favourite heroes in life,
You love the guitar, you love to dance and sing,
You like to have a good giggle and you like hugs,
And I do too, I do too.

I’m like you, I laugh sometimes, I fear, I doubt, I dream as well,
And just like you I don’t like to be left out,
Here I am, just like you.

You have little tantrums now and then,
But you’re determined to live life to the full,
You know love, and its infinite power,
And I do too, I do too

I’m like you, I laugh sometimes, I fear, I doubt, I dream as well,
And just like you I don’t like to be left out,
Here I am, just like you.

Me too, I eat my soup,
Me too, I’m afraid of the wolf,
Me too, I make plans,
Me too, I have my own song,

Me too, I go out at night,
Me too, I want knowledge,
Me too, I lose my head,
Me too, I worry,

Me too, I shout sometimes,
Me too, I jump for joy,
Me too, I have a voice of my own,
Me too, I have the same rights,

Me too, I feel fine,
Me too, I’m myself,
Me too, I’m just like you,
And you like me, like you, like me…

I’m like you, I laugh sometimes, I fear, I doubt, I dream as well,
And just like you I don’t like to be left out,
Here I am, just like you