Friday 17 September 1971


Born: May 23rd, 1939, Lyons (France)
Died: November 14th, 2004, Santa Monica Ca. (United States)
Nationality: French

In due course, the short impression below will be replaced with a more extensive career overview


Michel Colombier became staff arranger at Barclay Records at a very young age, writing orchestrations for Charles Aznavour, Cathérine Deneuve, Jeanne Moreau, and many more. Besides, he worked extensively with Serge Gainsbourg. Later, he was signed by Herb Alpert’s A&M Records and started a new career in America, during the course of which he worked with Barbra Streisand, Neil Diamond, The Beach Boys, and many, many other artists. Moreover, he wrote over one-hundred film scores and twenty ballets. In Japan, he was referred to as the Godfather of French Fusion, for his ability to mix classically inspired music with jazz.


In the 1960s, Colombier was involved in writing the arrangements for three Monegasque Eurovision entries. In 1964, he scored ‘Où sont-elles passées’, a delightful ballad by Francis Lai which was performed by Romuald; in the contest in Copenhagen, 24-years-old Colombier conducted the orchestra and the entry came third. 

In the following years, he was involved two more times in scoring the Monegasque entry, firstly in 1967 with Minouche Barelli, but on this occasions, the place on the conductor's platform was taken by the singer's father, bandleader Aimé Barelli. Minouche Barelli's 'Boum-badaboum' is also credited as a Michel Colombier composition - he worked on the song with Serge Gainsbourg. In 1968, in London, Colombier made his second and last appearance as a conductor in the Eurovision Song Contest, when he led the orchestra in London for Line & Willy, who represented Monaco with the charming ‘A chacun sa chanson’, composed by Francis Lai.


Country – Monaco
Song title – "Où sont-elles passées?"
Rendition – Romuald Figuier
Lyrics – Pierre Barouh
Composition – Francis Lai
Studio arrangement – Michel Colombier
Live orchestration – Michel Colombier
Conductor – Michel Colombier
Score – 3rd place (15 votes)

Country – Monaco
Song title – "Boum-badaboum"
Rendition – Minouche Barelli 
Lyrics – Serge Gainsbourg
Composition – Michel Colombier / Serge Gainsbourg
Studio arrangement – Michel Colombier 
(studio orchestra conducted by Michel Colombier)
Live orchestration – Michel Colombier 
Conductor – Aimé Barelli
Score – 5th place (10 votes)

Country – Monaco
Song title – "A chacun sa chanson"
Rendition – Line & Willy 
Lyrics – Roland Valade
Composition – Jean-Claude Olivier
Studio arrangement – Michel Colombier
Live orchestration – Michel Colombier
Conductor – Michel Colombier
Score – 7th place (8 votes)


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