Tag Archives: Black Francophones

Harlem Shuffled to Paris

vigonFor those of you who are new to this ride, I’ll let you know now: I have a thing for Black Francophones.  Random, perhaps.  Anyway, I present to you a Moroccan singer named Vigon (pictured left with Stevie Wonder).  Vigon performed in France starting in the mid 1960s, and at one time performed with a rock group called The Lemons.  Here he is singing “Harlem Shuffle” (a 1964 monster hit by Bob & Earl).  Oh, the organ…the organ.

Black Girl: Cult Movie of the Week


(1966, Directed by Sembene Ousmane)

If you are unfamiliar with this movie, or Black Francophone film in general, change that…now.  Black Girl is the story of a beautiful Senegalese nanny named Diouana (played by Thérèse Mbissine Diop, see above), who joins Robert Fontaine (Monsieur) and Anne-Marie Jelinek (Madame) on their trip to the French Riviera, absolutely dizzy from her bosses’ promises of going to town some sunny afternoons and buying fine French things.  Growing up in the French colony of Senegal, she came to believe that everything French was, in fact, superior.  A much darker reality soon presents itself, however, when she realizes that her absolute truth was only spun to keep her in a position of yearning.  A poigniant tale of the scars of colonization that haunts like French Perfume.