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Histoire de Melody Nelson (1971)

Ah! Melody

Summary

In the fourth track of Melody Nelson, Serge becomes jealous and threatening.

Paroles de Gainsbourg

Ah! Melody 
Tu m’en auras fait faire
Des conneries 

Hue hue et ho 
A dada sur mon dos 

Oh! Melody 
L’amour tu ne sais pas ce que c’est 

Tu me l’as dit 
Mais tout ce que tu dis est-il vrai?

Ah! Melody 
Tu m’en auras fait faire des conneries 

Hue hue et ho 
A dada sur mon dos 

Oh! Melody 
Si tu m’as menti j’en ferai 

Une maladie
Je n’sais pas ce que je te ferai

Discussion

For me, a transitional song, more interesting for its relation to the songs that come before and after than it is in itself.

The main thing, I guess, is the transition away from the jubilant tone of the “Ballade” that precedes it. It takes a while for the change of tone to come fully into focus — “Tu m’en auras fait faire / Des conneries” could be light and endearing. The piggyback riding is a reminder that this is not some normal relationship — that Serge is old enough to be Melody’s father. Then, at the end, the threats.

Linguistically, pretty simple, and not particularly enthralling. I mean, “à dada” is a weird way of referring to piggyback — but then I guess piggyback would sound weird to a non-English-speaker.

Oh, and that super-long, stanza-enjambment “j’en ferai / Une maladie” would be fun, or something, if it weren’t for the dark subject matter. It was only a matter of time before “Melody” rhymed with “maladie” (illness), huh? That time has now arrived!

On to the next song!

Traduction de “Fluid Makeup”

Ah, Melody
You’re gonna make me do
Some stupid shit.

Click, click, and clack
Riding me piggyback.

Oh, Melody —
Love, you don’t know what it is.

You promised me.
But are your promises true?

Ah, Melody
You’re gonna make me do
Some stupid shit.

Click, click, and clack
Riding me piggyback.

Oh, Melody,
If you lied to me I’m going to

Lose my shit.
I don’t know what I’ll do to you.

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