Franck Pourcel  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Franck Pourcel (14 August 1913 – 12 November 2000) was a French easy listening musician.

Biography

Born in Marseille, Pourcel started learning the violin at the age of six. Later Pourcel studied violin at the Conservatoire in Marseille, also drums because he loved jazz, and spent a year in Paris at the Conservatoire.

By 1931 he was working as a violinist in several theaters in Marseille, marrying Odette eight years later. He then became the musical director for Lucienne Boyer, with whom he went on a world tour.

He emigrated to the United States in 1952, but returned to France the following year to record "Blue Tango" and the follow-up "Limelight". In 1954 Pourcel recorded his first album on the Pathé-Marconi record label, with whom he would record a total of nine albums in a three-year period. In 1956 he recorded his version of "Only You", which sold over three million copies by 1959, and was awarded a gold disc. It peaked at #9 in the United States Billboard pop chart for 16 weeks. Between 1956 and 1972 he was the conductor for France at the Eurovision Song Contest.

By 1958 Pourcel commenced recording classical music. His series of Pages Célèbres led to him conduct the London Symphony Orchestra, The Society of Concerts for the Conservatoire, The BBC Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall, and the Lamoureux Orchestra at the Salle Pleyel in Paris. In 1962 he co-composed with Paul Mauriat the hit, "Chariot", which was recorded by Petula Clark and followed up by Peggy March as "I Will Follow Him". The song became the main theme for the film, Sister Act.

In 1975, at the request of Air France, Franck composed an anthem for their new supersonic plane, Concorde.

Pourcel recorded until 1995 with EMI. He died on 12 November 2000 in Neuilly-sur-Seine, at the age of 87, from Parkinson's disease.

Awards

He was rewarded with the following distinctions:

  • 1956: The Grand prix du disque Français
  • 1957: The Grand prix du disque in Brazil
  • 1963: The Golden disc in Venezuela
  • 1965: Amsterdam: The Edison Price (The equivalent of the film Oscars) for his orchestrations of Pop music
  • 1968: Golden disc in Colombia for Disco Mundo
  • 1969: Grand Prix du disque of the Charles Cros Academy in Paris
  • 1970: Gold record in Japan





Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Franck Pourcel" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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