I'm not sure if he is the French Tom Waits, or the French Tom Jones, but Bénabar has some ineffable larger than life resonance, or a history of Galoises. Plus also, he had a cool name that sounds like Babar... If I were to explain the intricacies of guinche and chansons, I would be making it up. (Oh okay! I looked it up. A guinche is a seedy hang out. The tradition that Bénabar comes out of, the bals-musette, is dance hall music that developed in the 1880s and does, like Tom Waits, often have an accordion and an exaggerated sense of lyrical play).
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