Universal: the fake scandal

Art 29 July, 2017
  • Photo archives, Ben Pelosse
    Robert Charlebois.

    Sophie Durocher

    Friday, 28 July, 2017 05:00

    Friday, 28 July, 2017 05:00

    Look at this article

    “It is shameful, it’s outrageous, it’s done by fools ! “

    This is what Robert Charlebois said a few days ago in the Mail from the South about the compilation of Universal for the 150th of Confederation, a compilation which contained no song in French.

    Sorry, Robert, but I’m not at all surprised that the tunes Léveillée, Desjardins or Leloup does not appear on a compilation of a company that wants to sell records and that is not a policy. For me, this whole story around Universal, and the 150th of Canada is a fake scandal.


    If it was a compilation of the CBC or Radio-Canada, I would understand the outrage. If it was a compilation of government, from the site of Heritage, I would understand the controversy.

    But we are talking here about a private company that is not required to meet quotas or criteria of the two official languages and who only responds to commercial interests.

    The purpose of this compilation is to sell, everywhere in the world, a showcase of some of the most popular in Canada. Not the best. Not what is the most culturally significant. What is the most seller.

    “I’m not even talking to me, said Charlebois in an interview. I think of songs, jewelry of Richard Desjardins, of the masterpieces of Jean Leloup. They are where, those people ? That is what they are listening to ? One hundred and fifty years of songs and they are not Fred ? Frankly, it doesn’t make sense ! “

    I love the song Frédéric Claude Léveillée. But I do not understand why Robert Charlebois is so outraged that it is not found in the compilation of Universal.

    Here are a few examples of songs that are there : Summer of ’69 Bryan Adams ; Man! I Feel Like a Woman Shania Twain ; and I ‘ m Like a Bird Nelly Furtado. In short, tubes, hits, songs that have cardstock on the four corners of the planet. I love You do you love me Richard Desjardins, but as far as I know, it has not played well in Shanghai and Timbuktu.

    Seriously, there are people who have lamented the fact that even the tune chosen for Celine Dion is a song in English. Really, friends, you thought that Universal was going to choose something other than “My Heart Will Go On”, the tune of the Titanic that has resonated from Fiji to Ouagadougou ?

    Seriously, friends, you would have preferred that the big bosses of Universal say : “We must honour the francophone side of Canada, so we will choose I to dance in my head” ? If you think that, do you dream in color.


    In response to the controversy, Universal has recognized his error and apologized. According to me, the mistake was to apologize. A commercial company has taken a commercial decision quite legitimate. It was not what whip a cat.

    One last question : if a private company decided to release a compilation for the 375th anniversary of Montreal and that there was no song in English, would you be shocked ?