"Jolie Louise" as written by and Daniel Roland Lanois....
Ma jolie, how do you do?
Mon nom est Jean-Guy Thibault-Leroux
I come from East of Gatineau
My name is Jean-Guy, ma jolie
J'ai une maison à Lafontaine
Where we can live, if you marry me
Une belle maison à Lafontaine
Where we will live, you and me
O-oh Louise... ma jolie Louise

Tous les matins au soleil
I will work till work is done
Tous les matins au soleil
I did work till work is done
And one day the foreman
Said «Jean-Guy, we must let you go
Et puis mon nom, why est pas bon
At the mill any more
O-oh Louise, I'm losing my head
I'm losing my head

My kids are small, four and three
Et la bouteille, she's mon amie
I drink the rum till I can't see
It hides the shame Louise does not see
The carousel turns in my head
And I can't hide, oh no no no no
And the rage turns in my head
And Louise, I struck her down
Down on the ground... I'm losing my mind
I'm losing my mind

En septembre soixante-trois
The kids are gone and so is Louise
Ontario they did go
Near la ville de Toronto
Now my tears, they roll down
Tous les jours, o-o-o-oh
And I remember the days
And the promises that we made
O-oh Louise, ma jolie Louise, ma jolie Louise

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"Jolie Louise" as written by Daniel Lanois

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Jolie Louise song meanings
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    General CommentI don't understand the French, but this song has nonetheless torn me up over the years. His longtime job in the mills -- the source of his personal identity & pride -- is gone and the deep shame of that loss and the resulting depression drive him to drink and abuse his wife. When she leaves with the children (as she should), he loses everything.

    Physical abuse is never right, but here it says more about desperation and narrow, traditional male roles. His drunken lash-out triggered his personal tragedy. He may have been a decent man before, perhaps even exemplary, but his legacy is devastation. I doubt that he lived very long after this.
    teekayeon February 10, 2018   Link

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