Frequently Asked Questions

Why this site?

·         Because I love French-language song and I want to share this passion.

  • Because no other site lists so many Francophone artists.
  • Because it's hard to find stores that offer this music outside French-speaking countries.
  • Because it helps you find concerts in a growing number of countries.
  • Because it will grow to include much more: CD reviews, a history of French song, and official sites for little-known artists.
  • Because it has an easy-to-remember URL.

 

What is French song?

In the lineage of a rich poetic tradition, French-language song nowadays exists in a multitude of forms. It would be impossible to find a single way to define it. It's often said that it differs from Anglo-Saxon song in that the lyrics carry more weight.

In any case, from the Paris cabaret songs of the 1950's (Juliette Gréco) to today's vivid Marseilles hip-hop (IAM), not to mention the Congolese soukous or Cajun zydeco, this site intends to cover all French-singing music.

Why doesn't this site talk about... ?

You want to suggest more topics... write me.

If what you ask for is relevant, I'll do everything possible to include it.

So if you are artists looking for fame, fans of obscure bands, or would-be music critics, you know what to do...

I'm just getting started as a singer, I'm looking for an agent / label

I'm still searching for interesting links on this topic. If you know of any, please write me.

What are MP3 files? How to listen to them? Is it legal?

MP3 files are now ubiquitous, yet they are still at the center of much controversy.

Definition: The "Motion Picture Expert Group Layer 3 Format", MP3 for short, is simply a means of recording sound on a computer. It's special because it combines a high compression ratio (about 1 MB per minute) with a high sound fidelity. This makes MP3 ideal for publishing CD-quality music on the Internet. (In contrast, uncompressed sound takes 9 MB per minute of recording, making download times unacceptably long.)

Difference with RealAudio: Another popular way of putting sound on the Internet is RealAudio. It allows for even more compression (about 200 K per minute) and real-time listening. However, the sound quality is poor.

Use: Many MP3-format tunes are available on the Internet. To listen to them, you need player software.

·         Current versions of Windows come with the Media Player which plays MP3 files.

·         WinAmp is one of the best Windows players.

  • On MP3.com you'll find players for a variety of operating systems.

Once you have a player, you can just download music.

Is MP3 illegal? Like many technologies, like Xerox machines, nuclear power, and flush toilets, MP3 files can be used in legal and illegal ways. The controversy surrounding MP3 technology is reminiscent of the one which delayed the release of the MiniDisc (recordable digital disc)and other similar products.

Artists and their publishers, represented by organizations such as SACEM, obviously deserve to be paid for their work. In no case would they want to see large-scale distribution of pirated copies of their works which would deprive them of royalties. This is why they aim to limit the use of technologies that would allow anyone to make exact copies of their discs.

This attitude is not shared by all musicians. Others, on the contrary, recognizing the promotional value of distributing their discs on the Internet, place MP3's of their own works on the network. That is the case with all the music found on sites such as MP3.com or France MP3 which we warmly recommend! These sites have the merit of allowing independent artists, often of great talent, to gain exposure outside the major record labels. This trend is truly bringing more democracy to the music industry.

Many internauts want to share their favorite artists with their cyber-friends. They create public archives of MP3's of their recordings, or swap them using programs like Morpheus or WinMX. It is a volunteer effort that does not bring them any profit. After all, this is not unlike borrowing CD's from the library or your friends. However, there has been a growing number of exemplary lawsuits against such people lately, as well as a crackdown on people who download said files. In one case, a young Swede has even been sentenced to jail for downloading MP3's. The SACEM's point of view (red paragraph on this page) is that it constitutes piracy indeed. Given the growing pressure against sharing copyrighted MP3's, and in parallel the explosive growth of excellent legal MP3 sites, we no longer wish to recommend downloading of unauthorized files.

To conclude, Internet-based music is already changing the face the recording industry. Recognizing the potential of this technology, some companies are starting to sell MP3's through electronic payment. SDMI (Secure Digital Music Initiative) will soon make this even easier, by encoding every MP3 file to limit the ability to copy it. Thus, the artists are getting paid. This may be the future. We will have to find ways to use these new publishing technologies while allowing creators to make a living out of their art.

What are MIDI and Karaoke files ? How to listen to them?

Definition : MIDI stands for Musical Instrument Digital Interface. This technology allows computers and musical instuments (synthesizersrs, electronic drums) to communicate. Briefly stated, MIDI lets you record music onto computer media. A MIDI file is like electronic "sheet music": it contains the notes and orchestration information which make up the musical piece. Like a player piano roll, a MIDI file can be played back by any MIDI instrument.

Your computer is a MIDI instrument! Inside every "multimedia" computer lurks a MIDI synthesizer. In other words, with the right software, your machine will play MIDI music files. The "Media Player" program supplied with every Windows PC plays MIDI files.

A Karaoke file simply is a MIDI files with lyrics added. A special player available here shows the lyrics as they scroll in sync with the music. You do the singing!

  1. The MIDI files on my site were created by amateur musicians and downloaded from other Internet sites. They are intended for personal and educational use only. For other uses (karaoke parties, public performances, broadcasting) please ask the competent authorities for information about royalties.