Here at Putumayo we are constantly searching for exceptional songs and musical talents that connect listeners to the world. As part of that research process, we also come across music videos that transport armchair travelers to the diverse destinations where the music originates. We have known for years that music has the power to take you places you might not be able to travel to in person, and when that music is combined with visuals it can be an even more immersive experience.
Paris is a uniquely picturesque city. With its iconic architecture, fascinating local personalities, narrow, cobblestone streets leading to broad, grandiose boulevards, the City of Lights is a magical setting for music videos.
Here's a selection of some of our favorite recent music videos featuring Paris as a backdrop.
Constance Amiot feat. JP Nataf - "Résonances"
From our latest release, Putumayo World Café, the video for "Résonances" by French singer-songwriter Constance Amiot and featuring JP Nataf begins with an iconic shot of the Eiffel Tower jutting up from the Paris skyline. From there, the video takes you on a journey through the streets of the city, with stops in a cozy bookstore, a classic café, and a magnificent train station. It's a three-minute mini-vacation to Paris!
Jann Beaudry - "Paris Perdu"
A young singer from the French Caribbean island of Martinique, Jann Beaudry begins her journey in the type of classic French apartment that tourists can only dream of finding on Airbnb. She wanders wistfully across a rain-soaked Paris lamenting an argument with her lover while strolling over glistening cobblestone streets and past cafés, the Louvre and even an busking accordion player. If that wasn't enough classic French iconography for you, a mime shows up later in the video. Perhaps that is the final straw that sends her back to the sunshine, beaches and simple life of Martinique where the video ends with a wink on a miniature Eiffel Tower tchotchke leaning in the sand of a Caribbean beach.
Daby Touré - "Oma”
Originally from the West African country of Mauritania and now based in Montreal, singer-songwriter Daby Touré called Paris home for most of his adult life. The music video for his song "Oma" (Call Me) follows a homeless mother and daughter as they wander through the streets of Paris. "One day as I was walking down the street," says Daby about the inspiration for the song and video, "I passed a woman and her children. She was alone, sitting on the ground, and asking for charity and nobody seemed to care. This woman spoke to me that day. She inspired this song. Oma is this mother’s cry."
Antoine Villoutreix - Le jardin municipal
While Paris is known for its architecture, it also is home to many lovely parks where urban dwellers can escape for a brief taste of nature. A French singer-songwriter living in Berlin, Antoine Villoutreix reminisces about the joys that can be found when spending time with friends in a Paris park, away for a time from the hustle and bustle of city life.
David Hababou & Enrico Macias - Ma vie est ici
Paris is home to many immigrants from across the world as well as residents with cultural ties to former French colonies. This diversity offers an invaluable contribution to the spirit of the city and makes Paris the multicultural melting pot that it is today. The new song "My Life is Here" by David Hababou and Enrico Macias celebrates this legacy. When Macias, now a very famous singer in France, emigrated to Paris from Algeria in 1961, David Hababou's grandfather lent him a helping hand and showed him around. Now these musicians from different generations come together to celebrate the immigrants that call Paris home while maintaining a love for their cultural heritage.
Maxime Manot' - "Seul à Paris"
Produced during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, singer-songwriter Maxime Manot' sings on "Alone in Paris" of the restrictions that have transformed the mood of the city. Built around a surreal shot in front of the Eiffel Tower, Manot' is accompanied by a string orchestra with no players, just ghostly, hovering instruments. A face mask dangles from the pegboard of his guitar as he sings "I am alone in Paris / I passed the test / Past the melancholy / In Paris / Behind my mask / Despite everything, I smile."
Thomas Dutronc - "Plus je t’embrasse"
The son of iconic French singer Françoise Hardy and singer and film star Jacques Dutronc, guitarist and singer Thomas Dutronc is deeply inspired by the Paris of the past, especially the Manouche jazz of the legendary Django Reinhardt. The video for "Plus je t’embrasse" (The More I Kiss You) begins with a vintage black and white film clip of a lover's embrace. As Dutronc jaunts across a bridge that crosses the river Seine, more classic film clips are interwoven with scenes from a swinging Paris jazz bar. Its a toe-tapper that will make you wish you were strolling through the streets of Paris with your beloved!
- Written by Jacob Edgar