FRENCH POP LYRICS: Yé-Yé Girls Summer Special

HOW TO BE A YÉ-YÉ GIRL: #4 – Have Musical Talent (Optional)

Yé-Yé girls have come in for more than their fair share of mockery, but Hardy stood out from the crowd with her undeniable musical talent.
This song is from her fifth French album, released in 1966. Here Hardy sings one of her own songs with minimal backing. See below for a more detailed look at her recording career.


Tu sais, si les gens 
que je vois passer
qui n'ont rien à dire 
et rien à montrer ...
et si les jours gris 
qui sont tous mes jours
remplis de ces gens 
et vides d'amour ...

Tu sais, si c'est ça ... la réalité

Et si les nuits blanches 
que sont les nuits
où je ne dors pas 
parce que je m'ennuye ...
si ce que je fais 
qui ne vaux pas mieux
que ce que font d'autres 
heureux - malheureux ...

Tu sais, si c'est ça ... la réalité

Mais si ton regard
mais si ton sourire
que j'aime bien plus 
que je ne sais dire ...
si tout ce qu' un jour 
tu m'as apporté
dont je ne veux pas 
devoir me passer ...

Tu sais, si c'est ça ... rêver

Mais si ton visage
si toi tout entier ...
ce que tu m'as dit
ce que tu m'as fait...
mais si ton regard
mais si ton sourire ...
mais si mon amour
et mes souvenirs ...

Tu sais, si c'est ça ... rêver

Fais-moi retrouver 
ce que j'ai rêvé
redeviens pour moi 
la réalité
Comment vais-je faire? 
Tu ne m'entends pas
Comment vais-je faire? 
Tu ne reviens pas

You know, if the people 
that I see passing
who have nothing to say
and nothing to show...
and if the grey days 
that are all my days
filled with these people 
and empty of love...

You know, if it's like that... reality 

And if the sleepless nights 
that are the nights
where I don't sleep 
because I feel so weary...
if what I do 
is no better
than what makes others 
happy, unhappy...

You know, if it's like that... reality

But if your look
but if your smile
that I love more 
than I know how to say
if all that one day
you brought me
which I don't want to 
have to pass me by...  

You know, if it's like that... to dream

But if your face
if your whole being...
what you said to me
what you did to me...
but if your look
but if your smile...
but if my love 
and my memories...

You know, if it's like dream

Let me find again 
what I have dreamed
become again for me 
How will I do it? 
You don't understand me
How will I do it? 
You don't come back


Si can mean If (as in Spanish)

Si can also be Yes (like Sí in Spanish), but only in response to negative questions:

Tu ne vas pas venir ?

Si (je vais venir) 

Si can also be used like So i.e. as an intensifier

Je suis si fatigué (I’m so tired)



Most of her early albums don’t have a title, it seems that just her name and a big picture of her face was more than enough to send them flying out of the shops. However, the are often given a semi-official title after one of the best known tracks, which I have written at the start of the description in bold. She also recorded albums in English, Italian and German, but I haven’t included those here.

1962 ‘Tous Les Garçons Et Les Filles’ was a worldwide hit and ‘Le Temps De L’amour’ is another of her best remembered songs. A period piece for sure, but the sparse arrangements and intimate feel give it plenty of charm. Arguably it remains her best album.

1963 ‘Le Premier Bonheur Du Jour’ is the standout track, and ‘Comme Tant D’autres’ features some groovey organ. This has weaker material than her debut, and less interesting arrangements (lots of soupy strings).

1964 ‘Mon Amie La Rose’ is the best known track. It also includes ‘Et Même’ (though the stomping single is better than the LP version) and ‘Dans Le Monde Entier’ (which was reworked in English as ‘All Over The World’). Hardy was arguably at the peak of her popularity at this point (at least in the UK).

1965 ‘L’Amitié’ and ‘Ce Petit Coeur’ are the best known songs here. It also includes the fine ballad ‘Il Se Fait Tard’ but overall Hardy is treading water on this LP.

1966 ‘La Maison Où J’ai Grandi’, an adaptation of an Italian hit, was the most succesful song here. My favourite track is the sparse ballad ‘Si C’est Ça’, written by Hardy herself. It’s not typical though, as many songs feature loud orchestral arrangements.

1967 ‘Ma Jeunesse Fout Le Camp’ is a string ballad that sets the tone for much of this rather bland LP. The brilliant ‘Voilà’ aside, this is more limp than limpid.

1968 ‘Comment Te Dire Adieu?’ (with lyrics by Serge Gainsbourg) was one of her biggest hits. However, it’s another rather MOR album, with too many covers and (unlike previous albums) only a couple of her own songs.

1970 ‘Soleil’, the MOR title track is typical of the album. More interesting is ‘Dame Souris Trotte’ with an arrangement by Jean-Claude Vannier – I just wish they had let him loose on the whole album.

1971 ‘La Question’ and ‘Viens’ are two of the best known tracks. Here Hardy is at her most blissed out, with cooler arrangements thanks to collaborator Tuca. Slightly overated perhaps, but it’s still her best LP from this period.


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