- France mourns death of his Elvis
- French singer Johnny Hallyday dies at 74 years old
Johnny was us. He was neighborhood boy who liked Elvis Presley, who was with his records. He was kid on street to look at. It was rocker prototype. He was not a rock musician, he was a music-making rocker. Neir Buddy Holly nor Gene Vicent were rockers compared to him. I was involved in a culture that I had assimilated and transmitted it to you in a way that made you feel like you belonged, that you could become a part of something. For me, when I was 15 years old, it was a mirror. Elvis was a musician, but Johnny was a rocker. I think so. It is a guy who discovered Jimi Hendrix in Ibiza, who recorded before Beatles and Rolling Stones, who sold more tickets than Rolling Stones and who and who sang in Spanish and turned his song into a hit. He was a devastating character.
A couple of days ago we learned that Johnny had been admitted and we were prevented, but it is an irreparable loss. He is most important European artist of rock and roll, along with Bruno Lomas and Adriano Celentano. They are pioneers of all this. It made it possible for rock and roll to break borders and become a universal language. You have to think of Celentano, Cliff Richards and, of course, Johnny Hallyday to know that rock and roll was a vision of life.
When I think about it, I realize it was my DNA. Without it would not be possible my songs like Rock and roll attitude or Johnny et Sylvie. I was fortunate to meet you in France. It was exactly as I thought it was going to be. He was a real guy. I took him to Paris, recorded songs and made Presents. He gave me his glasses to give to my son. I gave him a platinum ring with crazy Bird's drawing. He taught Me something very important: to change chip and to mature. When I saw him in 2003 at a concert in Prince's Park, re were four generations of fans sharing his passion for Johnny. That was a lesson in how to manage a career.
France is now in a state of shock because it has become an orphan. Johnny was more important than a President of Republic. It's very strong to say this, but it is. He had a whole attitude of life with him. Their way of singing, of acting, of suffering for ir love failures, of living ... It was pure romanticism of end of century. He was given two times for dead, but he didn't die. One of times, he ended up calling president to tell him that he was not dying yet, what fuck he was going to die with all gigs he wanted to give. That's greatness. It was also to see him escorted by streets by police and wanting to give m just because he wanted to have fun. Or leave your car parked in front of restaurant's, when it was banned, because he could do it. This is being a legend.
In Spain it is not known about importance and value of Hallyday. The culture of European rock has been despised in this country. When his figure was an emblem in France, with his last years recording large discs and getting numbers one, we did not find out in Spain. Nothing's here. I remember a concert he gave at Liceu in Barcelona not long ago and no one knew what it meant. I gave rock lessons on a stage, but here we get carried away by those who make a posture. On top of that, today on radio, I hear you've been compared to Manolo Escobar. Seriously? They have no fucking idea. It is an absolute contempt for Hallyday and European rock'n ' roll. For generation of Sixties, for Sírex, Savages, Bruno Lomas ... Johnny was God.
The saddest thing about his death is a truth: Rock and roll as a culture is over. It is a drip that we suffer periodically. The death of David Bowie was very hard, but even more so than Johnny. He was a neighborhood boy, a son of streets. He was one of originals. I put Johnny on same level as Bruce Springsteen. It's devastating. Now you can see many bands that play what was done before, but originals and real ones go. It's norm. Johnny represented a very important stage in pop culture in Europe. He always said, "Crazy, it's just Mick Jagger and me." And it's true.