发表于 2004-11-26 20:02
Georges Brassens was born in Sète, a small harbour town on the French Mediterranean coast, on October 22 1921. His father, Louis Brassens, a builder and local entrepreneur, married Elvira Dagrosa (recently widowed in the First World War) in 1919 and Georges was brought up with his nine-year-old half-sister, Simone, the child from his mother's previous marriage.|
Although his parents had fundamentally different points of view on many issues including religion (Elvira was an extremely pious woman, whereas Louis was a notorious anti-cleric) Georges grew up in a happy family environment. Music filled the Sète household throughout Georges's childhood. Indeed, his mother, greatly influenced by her Neapolitan origins, had a veritable passion for traditional Italian folk songs and mandolin music. The young Georges was encouraged to play the mandolin from an early age and it was on this instrument that he learnt the simple chords he would later develop on the guitar.
Georges was an average pupil at school, but his French teacher Alphonse Bonnafé (who would go on to write the first Brassens biography in 1963) soon introduced him to poetry, which was to become the young Georges's overwhelming passion in life. Georges soon began writing poems and song lyrics in his spare time, setting these to the fashionable tunes of the day. Georges then went on to form his own group, "Jazz", a small orchestra which performed at local fetes and cultural events. (Georges was the drummer).
By this time Georges had proved that his talents were definitely not related to his school studies. His future was decided for him when, following a theft at his school in the autumn of 1938 (a theft in which Georges was implicated without actually having been involved) he was obliged to leave the school. Georges had already outgrown the small town of Sète anyway and he was thinking of packing his bags and moving to Paris. But when war broke out at the end of the year (an event which did not really affect life in Sète) Georges continued working with his father, delaying his plans for a while. In February 1940, howeevr, he finally arrived in the capital, where he lived with his aunt, Antoinette Dagrosa, for the first few months, and worked at the Renault car factory to earn his living.
Georges continued writing poetry, however, and he would frequently return from work and sit down at his aunt's piano to compose new songs. When Paris was bombarded later that year he returned to Sète for a few months, but he was back in the capital by September. From this point on Georges devoted all his time and energy to his poetry and by 1942 he had succeeded in publishing two short collections of poems, "A la venvole" and "Des coups d'épée dans l'eau".
In March 1943 Brassens was sent to Germany to work as an S.T.O. (an obligatory war worker) at Basdorf. It was here that Brassens met fellow S.T.O. Pierre Onténiente, who would become one of the singer's lifelong friends. In 1956 Onténiente (whom Brassens who had a penchant for nicknames always referred to as "Gibralter") would become his private secretary and closest confidant.