Marc Lavoine

French pop balladeer Marc Lavoine transcended the matinee-idol trappings of his early career with a series of melancholy and profoundly intimate LPs exploring issues both personal and political. Born August 6, 1962, in the Parisian suburb of Longjumeau, Lavoine was raised on a steady diet of jazz and British Invasion rock & roll. As a teen he began writing songs, but initially gravitated more to acting, joining an amateur theater troupe in the rue Chabrol. While working as a receptionist at Paris' legendary Olympia music hall, Lavoine was introduced to Fabrice Alboulker, A&R director for the Barclay label. Albouker installed him in a Lyons-based hard rock combo called Your Vice, but the pairing proved disastrous and Lavoine returned to Paris, in 1981 landing a supporting role on the popular television soap opera Pause Café. He did not find acting to his liking, however, and soon renewed ties with Albouker, who agreed to compose music in tandem with Lavoine's lyrics. After signing to the Avrep label, the fledgling singer issued his debut single, "Je Ne Sais Même Plus de Quoi J'ai l'Air," in 1983, and with the blockbuster follow-up, "Pour une Biguine Avec Toi," he emerged as the premier romantic crooner of his generation, his success galvanized by his rugged good looks and warm, tender vocals. Lavoine issued his debut full-length, Le Parking des Anges, in 1985. A massive hit buoyed by the singles "Les Yeux Revolver" and "Bascule Avec Moi," it made the singer a household name. The 1987 follow-up, Fabriqué, fared equally well, generating the hits "Le Monde Est Tellement Con" and "Même Si," and a subsequent tour also proved enormously successful, yielding a live LP in 1988.