Monday, June 7, 2010

The Music: Plasir d'amour

In one very tender scene from So Faithful a Heart, Nancy's brother walks in on her to find her playing her guitar and singing a very popular tune of the time. It was composed in 1780 by Jean Paul Égide Martini, (with whom Mozart studied for a short time when he was 14 years old while he and his father were touring in Italy), entitled Plasir d'amour (The Joys of Love). In the 20th century it was recorded by several pop ballad artists including Joan Baez in 1961, and Nana Mouskouri in 1997.

I listened to several recordings of the piece and I was never able to find one that I liked altogether, so I settled on the Mouskouri recording, which incorporates a more modern orchestration, but captures the mood and the spirit of the piece better than any other recording I could find. She sings it in the original French, so I have provided the English translation below.

The pleasure of love lasts only a moment
The pain of love lasts a lifetime.
I gave up everything for ungrateful Sylvia,
She is leaving me for another lover.
The pleasure of love lasts only a moment,
The pain of love lasts a lifetime.
"As long as this water will run gently
Towards this brook which borders the meadow,
I will love you", Sylvia told me repeatedly.
The water still runs, but she has changed.
The pleasure of love lasts only a moment,
The pain of love lasts a lifetime.

1 comment :

  1. I didn't know this song was from the 18th century and I din't even know the title of it. My grandmother used to sing it a lot (a capella). She learned it from her grandmother and although she didn't speak any French at all, she sang it in that language. Thanks for the memories this post brought back to me!!!