Mudcat Café message #2360942 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #111795   Message #2360942
Posted By: Monique
08-Jun-08 - 05:17 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: French sea shanties
Subject: ADD: Passant Par Paris & Au Port de Toulon
Passant par Paris:
The French version is said to be a drinking song from the 18 and 19 th cent. in Florilège de la chanson française, Jean-Claude Klein, Bordas, Paris (1990) while the Provençal version (below) is said to be a Toulon traditional song from the 18th century in Diapason turquoise, volume 2, Les Presses de l'Ile de France, Paris (2004).. So which is actually the original version? That is the question.


PASSANT PAR PARIS /(TOULON)

Passant par Paris /(Toulon) vidant la bouteille (bis)
Un de mes amis me dit à l'oreille, bon, bon, bon

(Refrain)
Le bon vin m'endort, l'amour me réveille
Le bon vin m'endort, l'amour me réveille encore.

Un de mes amis me dit à l'oreille.
Jean, prends garde à toi, l'on courtise ta belle, bon, bon, bon

Jean, prends garde à toi, l'on courtise ta belle.
Courtise qui voudra, je me fie en elle…

Courtise qui voudra, je me fie en elle
J'ai eu de son cœur la fleur la plus belle…

J'ai eu de son cœur la fleur la plus belle
Dans un grand lit blanc, gréé de dentelles…

Dans un grand lit blanc, gréé de dentelles
J'ai eu trois garçons, tous trois capitaines…

J'ai eu trois garçons, tous trois capitaines
L'un est à Bordeaux, l'autre à La Rochelle…

L'un est à Bordeaux, l'autre à La Rochelle,
L' troisième à Paris, qui courtise les belles…

L' troisième à Paris, qui courtise les belles
Et l' père est ici, qui hale la ficelle…another version goes "qui tire la ficelle"


Going through Paris (Toulon), drinking (lit. emptying the bottle), /one of my friends tells me in my hear, well, well, well, (Chorus): the good wine makes me sleep, love awakes me, the good wine makes me sleep, love awakes me again/ John, beware, your beloved is being courted/ Court may whoever wants to, I trust her / I got from her heart the most beautiful flower / in a beautiful bed rigged with lace/ I had three boys all three captains / one is in Bordeaux, the other in La Rochelle / the third one in Paris courting the girls / and the father's here, pulling the string.

Provençal version (Traditional Provençal spelling):

AU PORT DE TOULOUN
(Traditional)

Au port de Touloun secant la boutilho (x2)
Matalot gabié m'a dich à l'aurilho, boun, boun, boun…

(Repic)
Lou boun vin m'endor,
L'amour me revilho
Lou boun vin m'endor
L'amour revilho moun cor, boun, boun, boun…

Matalot gabié m'a dich à l'aurilho
"Jan, paro-à-vira, calignon ta migo"…

"Jan, paro-à-vira, calignon ta migo"
"Me n'en garce ben, qu' vous la caligne…

Me n'en garce ben, qu' vous la caligne
De sa roso en flour ai proun fa la pilho…

De sa roso en flour ai proun fa la pilho
M'a fa très pichoun que soun de boun drilho…

M'a fa très pichoun que soun de boun drilho
L'einat très vaissèou coumando à Marsilho…

L'einat très vaissèou coumando à Marsilho
L'autre es capitan di mar de Turquio…

L'autre es capitan di mar de Turquio
Lo jouine a Cadis caligno lei filho…

Lo jouine a Cadis caligno lei filho
Ièou lou paire eici à fauto d'arbilho...

Ièou lou paire eici à fauto d'arbilho
Sale lo grelin per gagna boutilho...



In Toulon harbor, drinking (lit. drying the bottle)/ topman mate told me in my ear, well, well well (Chorus): The good wine makes me sleep, love awakes me, the good wine makes me sleep, love awakes my heart / John, "about ship", your beloved is being courted (the courting may reach sooooome level)/, I don't care at all that you court her,/ her blooming rose I caught a lot,/ she made me three children (lit. little ones) who're jolly fellows/, the eldest commands three ships in Marseilles/, the other is a captain on the Turkey seas/, the youngest is courting the girls in Cadiz;/ I, the father, here, for lack of money/, pull the hawser to earn my bottle.


You'll notice that the Provençal one doesn't care at all while the French one trusts his beloved. I couldn't find any different version in any book or online but I remember reading on an LP sleeve that "je me fie en elle" was a sanitized version of a former "je me fous bien d'elle" (I don't care at all / I don't give a damn) which has the same meaning as "me n'en garce ben". The French one sounds less rude (no pillaging which "ai proun fa la pilho" is about) but the last sentence can be understood as a double entendre: else he pulls the ropes or he pulls the strings. In French we would say he's a weird kind of fish because as you guys all know, mackerels and pimps are the same French "maquereaux".

The verse about the 3rd son has a spicier variant:

L' troisième à Paris, pilier de bordel
Quand il a cinq sous, il va voir les belles
The third one in Paris, a brothelfly (is that what you'd call someone spending his life in brothels?) / when he gets 5 "sous" (pence, cents…), he goes wenching



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