Tu voudrais que je chante encore
Le doux chant des petits oiseaux pour te plaire
Même quand j'entends des cris de mort
Qui sortent de nos cachots putrides
Que je chante l'eau claire
Des ruisseaux des rivières
Devant l’Artibonite rouge du sang de nos frères
Tu te dis pacifique tu te dis apolitique, mon frère

T'aime mieux les chanteurs de charme
Ça plaît bien aux belles dames
Quand elles tombent dans les pommes
Ça ne fait de mal à personne
Quand le chanteur se trémousse
Devant l’Amérique qui glousse
Les idoles ça donne des thrills
Ça fait oublier les missiles
Salvador et Haïti
La Grenade et compagnie, mon frère

Quand le show business fait des sous
On n'est plus raciste du tout, mon frère
On aime le rock on aime le blues
On discothèque on joue sa perte
On s'en lave les mains
On est de bons petits citoyens
Et dans le sable les autruches
Dorment du sommeil du juste
Pendant que le grand aigle
Se joue à dévorer les faibles
Les faibles, les faibles

Lyrics submitted by Lunes

Mon Frère song meanings
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  • 0
    Translation(Translated from French by Mark Dow)


    You would like me to sing yet again
    the sweet song about the little birds to please you
    even as I hear the cries of the dead
    coming from our filthy prison cells.
    You'd like me to sing of the clear water
    of the streams and rivers
    of the Artibonite
    red with the blood of our brothers.
    You call yourself a pacifist,
    you call yourself apolitical, my brother.

    You really like the romantic crooners,
    it pleases the beautiful women
    who love to faint,
    it doesn't hurt anyone;
    when the singer shakes it
    in front of a clucking America,
    idols supply the thrills
    which make us forget about the missiles,
    El Salvador and Haiti,
    Grenada and company, my brother.

    When show business makes big bucks
    you're no longer racist, my brother.
    You like rock, you like blues,
    you dance, you play at losing yourself.
    You wash your hands of it,
    you're all good little citizens
    and in the sand the ostriches
    sleep the sleep of the just
    while the great eagle plays
    at devouring the weak ones
    the weak ones, the weak ones, the weak ones.
    Luneson August 17, 2015   Link
  • 0
    General Comment(Note by Gage Averill on conjunctions.com)

    The Haitian term "twoubadou" (troubadour) includes singer-songwriters of conscience like Manno, but it also encompasses the quaint ensembles that play old méringues about the beauty of Haiti as well as Creole versions of Cuban trio songs. In the first stanza of this song, Manno contrasts himself to these quaint twoubadou ensembles. The song that he refers to in the second line is "Choucoune," one of the best-known romantic méringues, with a chorus that starts "Ti-zwazo" (or Little Birds). This is the same song that is sung in English as "Yellow Bird." In the second stanza, Manno tells us of another kind of singer that he isn't: commercial singers in Haiti are routinely classified into "chanteurs de charme" (romantic crooners) and "chanteurs de choc" (hard rockers).

    Francine Chouinard co-wrote "Mon Frère".
    Gregg Ellis co-translated "Mon Frère".
    Luneson August 17, 2015   Link

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