Born: 1953, Montreal
Genre: Singer-Songwriter Folk Rock
- “À qui appartient le beau temps”
- “Les Pleins”
- “Tous les vents”
1977 – À qui appartient l’beau temps?
1980 – L’escalier
1982 – Paul Piché (Moé j’raconte des Histoires)
1984 – Nouvelles d’Europe
1986 – Intégral
1988 – Sur le chemin des incendies
1993 – L’instant
1996 – L’un et l’autre
1999 – Le voyage
2004 – Paluche 3:14
2009 – Sur ce côté de la Terre
Not much information in English is available on Paul Piché which is not to say that he is only a minor musical force; indeed, three of his albums have attained Platinum status in Canada. As we have already stated, for any francophone album to sell a hundred thousand copies in Canada is a remarkable feat. Piché has been called the missing link between Bruce Springsteen and Jacques Brel, creating an original blend of French song, American rock, and Quebec folklore. A large portion of his career was spent in collaboration with various members of the rock band Beau Dommage.
Able to play both piano and guitar, he composes most of his songs on the acoustic version of the latter and, though primarily embracing a folk and blues style, he has dabbled in electronics and the use of synthesizers. Many of his songs have been absorbed into the zeitgeist of Quebec culture, being sung around campfires, played at house parties, and featured in cabarets, not to mention la Fête nationale du Québec celebrations.
Paul began singing at the University of Montreal while studying archaeology there in the early ’70s. He became somewhat of a celebrity among university students around the province, and began performing on various campuses. His talent was recognized in 1977 by Robert Léger, keyboardist of Beau Dommage, who encouraged him to record an album. Piché acted on this advice, and his debut, À qui appartient le beau temps, went Platinum.
After this big breakthrough, he began collaborating with Michel Hinton, another Beau Dommage keyboardist, and released the single “Tous les vent” in 1984 which peaked at #2 on the charts. Its album Nouvelles d’Europe won the Félix Award for best rock album of the year. In 1986, Paul performed with Beau Dommager Michel Rivard and toured both the province and Europe. Two years later, with the release of the Platinum-selling Sur le chemin des incendies, Piché scored a number one hit with its single “J’appelle”.
In 1990, Montreal’s La Presse proclaimed Piché “Personality of the Year” in the song category. Paul Piché has been active as an ecologist, environmentalist, poet, and author.