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Blog Posted in avatar   Johnny Summerton's Blog

Yael Naïm picks up Best Female Artist at France's Victoires de la musique awards

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By Johnny Summerton
Posted Mar 2, 2011 in Entertainment
Tuesday evening saw part two of Les Victoires de la musique awards, the French equivalent of the Grammys, broadcast live from Paris on France 2.
"Part two" because, in their infinite wisdom, organisers decided viewers probably weren't up for several hours of tra-la-la-ing and thank you speeches to all and sundry and split the ceremony in two.
February 9 was dedicated solely to newcomers and "revelations" with the public getting to vote in each category and the whole shebang being broadcast live from the northern city of Lille on France 2's (much) smaller sister station France 4.
Meanwhile Tuesday saw awards handed out to the "more established" artists with industry professionals getting to determine who got what.
Of course the voting procedure is more complex than that; but by and large the heavyweight awards were decided by those "in the know" who had already whittled the nominees in each category down to four and, apart from the Song of the Year which was left to a public vote, determined who got the gongs.
Perhaps the most interesting category of the evening was that of Best Female Artist because it had, in a real sense, a truly international flavour to it.
Added to that, there were some stunning performances although only three of the nominees were present.
Canadian Cœur de pirate (otherwise known as Béatrice Martin when she's not performing) who won the award in 2010 for Best Song gave a simple voice and piano rendition of "Francis" from her self-titled 2009 album.
Nigerian-French singer-songwriter Aṣa (pronounced Asha), trademark big specs and velvet timbre of a voice, treated the audience and viewers to a groovy "Be my man" taken from her 2010 album "Beautiful imperfection".
And French-Israeli singer-songwriter Yael Naïm added a touch of soul and jazz as well as a heap of gospel to her pop-folk rock "Come home" from her "She was a boy" album.
Only Vanessa Paradis - French model-actress-singer and partner of Johnny Depp (or should that be the other way round?) - was missing.
Perhaps she had guessed she wouldn't be picking up an award this time around but she already has a heap of them to her name.
And the winner is...Yael Naïm.
In the night's other categories awards were picked up by Gaëtan Roussel for both Best Male Artist and Best Album, M (full name Matthieu Chedid) and veteran Eddy Mitchell jointly for best concert/show/tour and Philippe Katerine (love him or hate him) for his splendidly as-usual off-the-wall "La banane" as Best Video.
The last award for Best Song - and the only one on the night left to the public vote - went to "Je veux" by Zaz.
As Paris Match said, "A lively evening and a long way from the seemingly interminable hours of poorly paced entertainment" viewers were subjected to last year.

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