Pour toi / Feelings / Sentimientos / Dis-lui

1975 Feelings-Morris Albert (LP) RCA Victor APL1-1018 (back)-d30Selected links

Song:

Singles:

Morris Albert’s 1973 recording of “Feelings” was a big hit in 1974. The song was adapted, according to a 1987 jury verdict in Federal District Court in Manhattan, by Albert from the song “Pour toi,” composed in 1956 by Louis Gasté, with lyrics by Albert Simonin and his wife Marie-Hélène Bourquin, though it took a lengthy and eventually successful 1980s copyright infringement suit to legally name Gasté as co-songwriter. Albert also released an alternate version with a Spanish-language lyric, in 1974, which was evidently written by himself, as he’s the sole songwriter credited on the label (see below). In 1975, Israeli-born French pop star Mike Brant recorded a version of “Feelings” titled “Dis-lui” (“Tell him”), with the French lyric written by Michel Jourdan.

Line Renaud and Loulou Gasté (1)Line Renaud (1)

Pour toi (m. Louis Gasté, w. Albert Simonin, Marie-Hélène Bourquin)
“Pour toi” was recorded by the singer and actress Line Renaud, wife of Gasté, in 1956, and performed by Dario Moreno in the 1957 film Le Feu aux poudres. The arrangements of the song used by Moreno in the film and in a separate studio recording with an orchestra sound very little like Morris Albert’s 1973 recording of “Feelings,” though portions of the melody are similar. The 1956 recording by Line Renaud, in part, exhibits slightly greater resemblance to Albert’s “Feelings,” melodically and in tone, but it seems like a rather large leap to find that the melody of “Feelings” was copied or stolen from the French song.

The claim made by the plaintiff Gasté that Albert “gained access” to the virtually unknown song “Pour toi” through his publisher Fermata, which “had had some dealings with Gasté’s publishing company, Les Editions Louis Gasté, in the 1950s” was unaccompanied by evidence that such access was ever obtained.

Line Renaud — title song from the 1956 EP Pathé ‎(France) 45 EG 232

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Dario Moreno — in the 1956 film Le Feu aux poudres; the performance begins at about :49

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1957 Imploration (EP) Dario Moreno- Philips 432.182 NE

Dario Moreno — from the 1957 EP Imploration, Philips 432.182 NE

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1975 Feelings-Morris Albert (LP) RCA Victor APL1-1018-d20

Feelings (m. Louis Gasté, Morris Albert, w. Morris Albert)

Morris Albert

Feelings — issued in 1974 on the single RCA Victor PB-10279, b/w “This World Today is a Mess” — US chart success: #6, Hot 100; #2, Adult Contemporary; also later released on the 1975 LP Feelings, RCA Victor ‎APL1-1018

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1974 Sentimientos-Morris Albert-(Brazil) Beverly 45-13.508

Sentimientos (aka “Dime”) — issued in 1974 on Beverly ‎(Brazil) 45-13.508; songwriting credited solely to Morris Albert on the label — A recording under the same title released by Mexican singer José José in 1974 has a different lyric.

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Selected additional early recordings of “Feelings”

Andy Williams & Claudine Longet-AP photo, 19 December 1974

Andy Williams — from the 1975 LP The Other Side of Me, Columbia PC 33563

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1975 With Feelings LP-Des O'Connor, Hallmark (UK) HMA 2551975 With Feelings LP-Des O'Connor, Hallmark (UK) HMA 255 (back)

Des O’Connor — from his 1975 album With ‘Feelings’, Hallmark (UK) HMA 255

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1976 Same Kind of Magic-Wynners-LP-Philips (Hong Kong) 6380 006 (d58-g40)1976 Same Kind of Magic-Wynners-LP-Philips (Hong Kong) 6380 006 (back)

The Wynners — from the 1976 LP Same Kind of Magic, Philips (Hong Kong) 6380 006

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1976 -With Love and Understanding-Ronnie Aldrich-LP-Decca (UK) PFS 4406

Ronnie Aldrich, his Pianos and Orchestra — from the 1977 LP With Love and Understanding, Decca Phase 4 PFS 4406 (SP-44286)

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Lena Martell — final track on her 1976 album Country Style, (UK) Pye Records NSPH 18

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1976 Feelings (LP) Tracy Huang-EMI ‎EMGS-5004-(1a)

Tracy Huang — title track from her 1976 album (Singapore) EMI EMGS-5004; a version of the album with one additional track on each side was issued in the same year in Singapore, Malaysia,and Hong Kong as EMI EMGS-5005

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1976 Feeling Good-Walter Jackson-LP-Chi Sound Records CH-LA656-G (2)1976 Feeling Good-Walter Jackson-LP-Chi Sound Records CH-LA656-G-label, side 2

Walter Jackson — from his 1976 album Feeling Good, Chi Sound Records CH-LA656-G

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Litsa Skartsatou — uploaded on 21 March 2008

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Versions in other languages

Dis-lui — French lyric by Michel Jourdan

Mike Brant — issued on the 1975 single Polydor ‎(France) 2056 435 1975, b/w “L’oiseau noir et l’oiseau blanc

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Pes tis — Greek-language version, lyricist unknown

Sakis Rouvas — 2003

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more recent recordings of “Pour toi”

Roch Voisine — from the 1990 LP Double

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Line Renaud — date unknown

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Unlike the performance in the video immediately above, which seems to be from about the same time, in the following 1999 2006(?)* live performance by Line Renaud and Muriel Robin, the pair sing the lyric of the 1956 song “Pour toi,” yet use an arrangement strikingly similar to that of Morris Albert’s arrangement of “Feelings,” including its rather dissimilar refrain (even its signature whoa whoa whoas). One commenter on the YouTube post said, succinctly, “not the original ‘pour toi’. Gaste ripped off Morris Albert. Pour toi didn’t sound like this.” Il semble que oui.

It stinks that Gaste won his bogus infringement suit, stealing credit and royalties from Albert, but this performance magnifies the reek of the scam.

Line Renaud et Muriel Robin — 2006(?)

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* 1999, the date given by the video provider, is questionable because the provider also locates the performance on the “Symphonic Show,” a TV series which, according to IMDb ran from 2003 to 2007. Not only that, but IMDb indicates that Line Renaud appeared in just two episodes, both during the period 2006-2007, while Muriel Robin also appeared in only two episodes, both in 2006.

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7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Dennis Maher
    Feb 28, 2015 @ 08:39:59

    Interesting similarity to several tunes by Sidney Bechet, particularly Jacqueline (Nous Deux) usually dated 1959.

    Reply

    • doc
      Feb 28, 2015 @ 15:08:11

      Hi Dennis,
      Thanks for observation. Your ear, I’ve no doubt, is trained to detect jazz nuances which I’ll miss. Propelled by your suggestion, I’ve been listening to a couple of versions of “Jacqueline (Nous Deux)” today (see below). I don’t hear any significant melodic connection to “Pour toi,” or “Feelings,” but the melody does sound familiar. The song which comes to my mind is “Strangers in the Night.” I sense that there’s another standard which it also partly resembles, but I’m struggling to identify it at the moment.

      Unidentified recording, with vocal, dated 1953 (The recording sounds later. I suspect the date refers to a copyright or publishing date of the composition.)

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      Sidney Bechet et son orchestre — from the 1954 EP Sentimental, Mr. Bechet, Vogue Productions (FR) EPL 7 008

      Reply

      • doc
        Mar 01, 2015 @ 04:33:02

        A much closer relative to Bechet’s “Jacqueline” than “Strangers in the Night” is the 1934 song “Midnight, the Stars and You.” Since that song was recorded by sweet-style British dance bands of the mid-1930s, the similarity is more evident in the vocal version above, than in Bechet’s 1954 recording, with it’s heavy New Orleans style.

      • Dennis Maher
        Mar 01, 2015 @ 08:53:30

        I agree about Midnight the Stars and You. Many similarities. Thank you for your good work – I should have thought of this since I watch the Shining only a few weeks ago and looked up all the background music in it at that time. When heavily involved in music (I play sax; standards and New Orleans) you can think you have written a new tune but it is built on themes and phrases in the back of your mind. Beginning a song with a particular interval makes for many songs with that interval, etc.

  2. Dennis Maher
    Feb 28, 2015 @ 20:39:59

    Well, now that I think about it, and have listened to some other things, I think Pour Toi is possibly a rip off of Nature Boy (1948).

    Reply

  3. Trackback: Nina Simone e Morris Albert | Ani Dabar

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