Greek-Egyptian-French singer Georges Moustaki dies

In this French music video, Georges Moustaki sings his song Le Métèque.

The lyrics of the song are about prejudices against immigrants. Moustaki himself was a Jewish-Greek-Egyptian immigrant to France.

The French word “métèque” is derived from ancient Greece. In the city-state of Athens, metics were immigrants who were not slaves, but had no citizen rights either.

In France since the nineteenth century, “métèque” became a term of abuse against Jewish and other immigrants.

From the BBC:

23 May 2013 Last updated at 10:52 GMT

Georges Moustaki, composer of Edith Piaf hit song, dies

Georges Moustaki, the French singer and composer who wrote Edith Piaf‘s 1958 hit song, Milord, has died aged 79.

Moustaki, whose real name was Giuseppe Mustacchi, sang in several languages and penned in the region of 300 songs.

Born in Egypt on 3 May 1934, he changed his name in honour of his idol, the French singer Georges Brassens, after he moved to Paris in 1951.

Among the French stars who sang his compositions were Yves Montand, Juliette Greco and Pia Colomba.

Moustaki was the son of an immigrant Jewish couple from Greece who settled in Egypt.

He was known for his romantic ballads, his repertoire included songs in French, Italian, English, Greek, Portuguese, Arabic and Spanish.

The song, Milord, was a number-one hit in Germany in 1960, reaching number 24 in the UK that same year.

It has been covered by various artists over the years, including Cher, appearing on her second solo album, The Sonny Side of Cher, released in 1966.

This music video is the song Portugal, by Georges Moustaki.

It is from 1974, when the carnation revolution managed to overthrow the dictatorship in Portugal.

The lyrics mention this as a sign of hope, while the Franco dictatorship in Spain, and the Pinochet dictatorship in Chile were still torturing; and the Vietnam war still continued. They express the hope that this revolution would end Portuguese colonialism in Africa.

6 thoughts on “Greek-Egyptian-French singer Georges Moustaki dies

  1. Pingback: Spanish government honours Hitler’s soldiers | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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