La vie en rose or singing in the rain in Montmartre

love songs Montmartre

Paris and its love songs, l’amour, toujours l’amour as the saying goes. La vie en rose is Edith Piaf’s most celebrated song. A few weeks ago we took a stroll around Montmartre with a young street singer who showed us around places. With her love songs, Anne Sophie rekindles the spirit of the old Montmartre, which is still remarkably parochial, despite the swarming of tourists all around the “butte”.

love songs Montmartre
Just by looking at this photo, I believe you can almost hear that accordion in the background can’t you? When I settled down in the Paris 14th district 15 years ago, I discovered at least 2 or 3 private music schools for accordion in the vicinity. Most have closed their doors by now, this time is well and truly over but Anne Sophie is maintaining our traditions with her songs.

Here we were gadding about and each time we encountered a spot where some local singer had written songs or merely lived, Anne-Sophie, our guide, was singing a song with her beautiful and powerful voice. People would stop and listen and make appointments with her so that they could come back at a later date.

love songs in Montmartre
A bunch of friends in Montmartre listening to — mostly — love songs sung by our guide Anne Sophie

Anne Sophie in front of the wall of “I love yous” in Montmartre, what better place is there to sing love songs?

love songs Montmartre
A love-songs tour in Montmartre was bound to start with the “I love you” wall in Les Abbesses.

Our tour started from Les Abbesses, at the heart of Montmartre.

The entrance of the metro station is one of the two remaining glass-covered “dragonfly” entrances by Hector Guimard. A remarkable example of Art Nouveau architecture, of which many Parisians remained critical for a long time. This particular entrance was moved from the Town Hall (Hôtel de Ville) in 1974. A bit of immediate authenticity for you. Tourists flocking (after a two-year hiatus) to Montmartre to listen to Anne-Sophie’s love songs among other things, will not be able to see this entrance at the time of publication of this blog post however as it’s all wrapped up for renovation purposes.

Hector Guimard – Art nouveau “Dragonfly” entrance
Anne Sophie outside the famous Moulin de la Galette

At one point, Anne Sophie tour of love songs in Montmartre was turned into a French rendition of Kelly’s Singing in the rain, only to make it even more romantic.

Should you be interested in the Montmartre love songs tour by Anne Sophie, please contact her though her website (in French only)

Yann Gourvennec
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