National anthems are, on the whole, a bloodthirsty genre. It’s funny that while debate rages around violent or pornographic songs and video games, we still stand up to shout (I can hardly say sing) encouragements to kill, seek revenge, conquer and ethnically cleanse. If you think I’m exaggerating, I invite you to check the anthems of, say, Ireland and France. So it is all the more surprising that in the middle of a presidential election campaign, one candidate says that he will re-write the French national anthem…
The candidate is none other than José Bové, the French farmer leader who was jailed for thrashing a McDonald’s on one occasion and a genetically-modified crop on another. Nationalistic themes are strong in the current French election. So it’s nice to think that someone has actually read the lyrics to the “Marseillaise” and thought about what they mean (and imply in this day and age). So if he is elected, BovÃ© promises to organise a competition to find more suitable lyrics for the rousing anthem.
We wish Monsieur BovÃ© bonne chance and wish others had his eye for naff lyrics.
Check the “Marseillaise” here (for more anthems, try the lyric search box on the right). Francophiles might remember when Serge Gainsbourg created a scandal by doing an offhand reggae version called, “Aux armes, etc“.