Charles Aznavour at ninety


The English language may have produced most of the greatest singer-songwriters of the modern age, but it doesn’t have a monopoly.

The French language and France itself has also produced more than its fair share, including Charles Aznavour. In 1974, he had a number one hit in the UK with She, which has an English lyric by Herbert Kretzmer.

Aznavour was born May 22, 1924, which means this year he will celebrate his 90th birthday, and he will be doing so in style at London’s Royal Albert Hall on June 1.

If you read French, check out his official website, and if you don’t, use Google Translate!

His biggest US hit and arguably his greatest English language song is Yesterday, When I Was Young, again with English lyric by Herbert Kretzmer. Originally Hier Encore, it was written half a century ago. What must he think of it now?

[The above was first published February 1, 2014; the original wasn’t archived. I saved it to my hard disk, but for some reason the associated photograph didn’t save with it. If I recall, it was of Aznavour dueting (tri-eting?) with his daughter and granddaughter. Charles Aznavour died in 2018 aged 94.]

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