There are, of course, thousands of great French singers, so while these 3 might be some of my favourites, it’s very subjective…
ZAZ, otherwise known as Isabelle Geffroy, sings super uplifting jazz-styles songs. My favourite is ‘Je Veux’ – released in 2010, it was a massive hit and kinda makes you want to be her…
She has been described (in the French magazine Telerama) as having a “sacred voice” – listen to this and see if you agree: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tm88QAI8I5A
2. Gérald de Palmas
His album “Marcher dans le sable” got him the Best Francophone Album of the Year in 2002, and here’s a fun fact: Celine Dion translated his song ‘Tomber’, and sang it in English titled ‘Ten Days’.
Here’s the his and hers version… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1eDGbuQ_uE
3. Carla Bruni
So France’s ex-first lady is not only famous for posing naked, being involved with Mick Jagger and being married to Nicolas Sarkozy – she actually has a really good voice (and writes her own lyrics too). Her first album ‘Quelqu’un m’a dit’ was successful in French-speaking countries, and various songs from it have been used in other things – some in movies, and one in an H & M advert.
Ideal for a europhile, Manu Chao – half Spanish half French – sings in a melange of languages including Spanish, French, English and various others that I’m not sure are actually real languages. His album Proxima Estacion: Esperanza which was released in 2001 is so catchy and easy to listen to even if you don’t understand half of what he’s actually saying… My favourite songs are Mr Bobby (even though it’s in English), Me Gustas Tu, and Le Rendez Vous
Go and listen