I've Seen That Face Before (Libertango)  

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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.

"I've Seen That Face Before (Libertango)" is the third single from Grace Jones' album Nightclubbing. The song juxtaposes Libertango, an Argentine tango classic, written by bandoneonist Ástor Piazzolla and first recorded by the composer himself in 1974, against a reggae arrangement and new lyrics penned by Jones herself and Barry Reynolds, and the song also includes spoken parts in French; "Tu cherches quoi ? À rencontrer la mort ? Tu te prends pour qui ? Toi aussi tu détestes la vie..." (Translated: "What are you searching for? To meet death? Who do you think you are? You hate life, you too...") Jones also recorded Spanish and Italian language versions of the track.

"I've Seen That Face Before" which describes the darker side of Parisian nightlife counts as one of Jones' signature tunes. It was also featured in key moments of the 1988 thriller movie Frantic, set in Paris and starring Harrison Ford, the song however did not make it onto the film's accompanying soundtrack album. It also features in Raw Deal (1986 film)

The single peaked at the German Single Charts #16.

12" version

The single was also released as a long version (time 5:36). This version is not yet released on CD.

Music video

The song is famous for its video, with Jones performing the track and playing accordion, although the original was actually performed on bandoneón. The single cover (shown right) recreates an image from that video.

The video is also the closing track of Jones' classic A One Man Show music documentary, which includes some additional footage.

Cover versions

Artists who have recorded the song with Jones' reggae arrangement and sometimes also translated lyrics include Julien Clerc, Guy Marchand, Herb Alpert, Gary Burton, Al Di Meola, Richard Galliano, Camilla Henemark, Yo-Yo Ma, Iva Zanicchi and The Tango Saloon.




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "I've Seen That Face Before (Libertango)" 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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