What are the (French) lyrics to this song?
February 7, 2013 3:41 PM   Subscribe

Can you help transcribe (I guess) a few lines of French from Lafayette Blues, by the White Stripes?

Can you tell me what the missing lyrics are in the studio version of Lafayette Blues (YT link), by the White Stripes? I've taken the following lyrics from an online site, and they all seem pretty comparable as to what they have, but they're all missing the same sections. I've numbered the lines in case that will help. The lyrics were often changed when the song was performed live, but I'm looking for this specific version. Also, if you feel some of the words I have listed are in error, please do tell.

1 Marantette, Leverette
2 Lannette, Lafayette, Livernois
3 Labrosse, Louis, Mettetal
4 Rochelle, Marseilles
5 Riopelle, Manistique, Armour
6 ???
Oh, Oh, Mmmmm


7 Mercier, Lemay
8 Tournier, Saliotte et Leroy
9 ???
10 Montlieu, Cadieux
11 Neveaux, Avenue en Detroit
12 ???
13 Well, I'm ready
14 I'm ready
15 I'm ready, ready, Teddy to
16 Rock and roll


17 Lamphere, Belle Terre
18 Marseilles, Mettetal, et
19 Rouge, Le Blanc
posted by Nabubrush to Writing & Language (6 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
According to Wikipedia, "the lyrics of "Lafayette Blues" are a list of French names of streets in the band's hometown, Detroit, Michigan. Live performances of "Lafayette Blues" contain various arrangements of the names."

There are many websites that will show you the lyrics if you google for them.
posted by zadcat at 5:11 PM on February 7, 2013

Response by poster: Um, not to sound too snarky, but your response is sort of exactly what I wrote above.

I did look at all those sites, and as I mentioned they all list these lyrics but not the parts that are missing. Also, those sites are sort of notorious for not getting them all right. I do know that those lyrics that I have listed are streets in Detroit. The lines that I have listed with question marks are the parts that are not listed on the sites, and my tiny amount of high school French indicate that those lines are more conversational and not proper names of streets.
posted by Nabubrush at 5:55 PM on February 7, 2013

May need to dump it into some audio software, slow it down, and tease out the vocals. As it is my rusty college French isn't certain about much.
posted by dhartung at 6:34 PM on February 7, 2013

Best answer: They sound sort of Canadian. some of it was unintelligible to me, I'm not a native speaker, but here's my best guess:

6. Et ou j'ai ??? chez moi "And where I (did something) at my place" (it's past tense of some verb but I can't understand it)

9. Ouais, j'ai beaucoup _(dit?)_ chez vous "Yeah, I said??? a lot at your place" (this doesn't seem right, there's a word I can't quite make out and it might not be "dit")

11. Et ooh c'était bon "And it was great"
posted by citron at 7:22 PM on February 7, 2013

Best answer: Okay so I had a few listens of this (they don't sound Canadian to me, they sound like someone speaking very bad French *lol*). My best guesses (tho I'm pretty sure they're wrong because he doesn't pronounce words correctly! What is allegedly "Amour" sounds like "à moi!"):

6. Et où j'ai fait conter de moi. And where I made people talk about me.
9. Oh oui j'ai beau douter de vous. (Um, not sure how to translate this. The phrase "avoir beau" kinda means "do sth in vain", as in "j'ai beau m'entraîner tous les jours, je n'arrive pas à courir les 5000m" - "no matter that I exercise every day, I can't run the 5k".
12. agree with citron: Et ooh c'était bon.
posted by ClarissaWAM at 5:06 AM on February 8, 2013

Response by poster: Thank you for your help! I kind of suspected the linking, conversational parts were sentences he gave to someone to translate and just sort of stumbled through, and it sounds like that might be the case. It's interesting (to me) to listen to some of the live versions that have different lyrics. Now I wonder if he's just speaking gibberish on those.
posted by Nabubrush at 8:06 AM on February 9, 2013

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