DieSeele

I didn t really knew the guy, I had heard about Taxi Girl and their song Cherchez le Garcon because it is an eighties standard in France. When Daniel Darc came slowly back into the light, the musical press started to publish articles about him as well as a lot of pictures, showing a man with black inked tattoed arms and a face that showed that life had not been always easy and fair with him… I liked this guy instantly when I read the articles, he had something very sensible in his eyes and also something really punkish in his attitude, a true survivor who had passed god knows how through the wild years and was allmost forgotten by many…
I have always had a lot of admiration and attraction for cursed poets and artists which for some reasons always stayed in the dark, probably because they were too fragile and had a much too heavy burden to carry through their personal life. So the first time I went to see Daniel Darc play live, it was more curiosity than anything else that took me to the concert.
I didn t knew his songs by then or his lyrics and live potential, only the fallen angel posture…
When the gig began it took a lot of time before he finally managed to come on stage and when he did, he first went to great and chat with all of his musicians before actually starting to sing, as if he wasn t on stage but somewhere in Paris hanging out in his favourite bar or record shop with some lads… Finally he started his repertoire, a small but strong man with an incredible sensibility and shyness and a smile in which you instantly would fall in love with...I did from the start, I was overwhelmed by emotions… His lyrics were pure poetry, a mixture of various influences, some kind of french William Boroughs... A part of the gig was very intimistic, very personal, Daniel always told stories about his daily life between the songs, sometimes he started a song and then stopped because he had forgotten the lyrics, sometimes he completely improvised or transformed a song or sang the lyrics of a song on the music of another, you would never know what was going to happen at a Daniel Darc gig, I discovered this with the time… There was something typically punk in his attitude and way of performing, nothing was prepared, he didn t care, he knew how to handle it all and that it would be great, that it would be art, that it would be fucking rock n roll anyhow (he hated this but at each gig there was always someone that would shout rock'n roll and Daniel would always react)… He always carried a small bible with him and sometimes read some verses from it or played on his harmonica. His voice was very fragile and sensual, his whole life experience was passing through it and you could litteraly feel it. People may have thought that Daniel was still on drugs but he wasn t, he had stopped his heroin addiction for good, but was carrying the consequences of his very long drug abuse. He always said himself that in one arm he had injected the equivalent of a Porsche and in the other the value of a Rolls Royce… He made me think of Nico, the german Velvet Underground Icon who had spent her life in the dark and on heroin as well but who also wrote wonderful songs and had a unique voice and charisma.

After a while and a couple of ballads and quiet songs the old punk emerged and brought the whole audience into a boiling state of madness. The whole room was now transformed into a gigantic mess, a huge pogo where everyone was moving from the front to the back… Probably like me a lot of people had come to this concert without really knowing Daniel or what he was singing and now suddenly you had the impression that you were witnessing a Stooges gig in the CBGB… I was mesmerized by what I saw and truly touched by the man, I had a true legend in front of me, a living piece of rock history. When the gig ended Daniel slowly went off the stage, he had to climb up a staircase to join the backstage area. I went over to him and instantly grabbed him like an old friend or brother would, I was that happy and didn t even thought about what I was doing. He took me in his arms for a long while and smilled, it was a moment I will never forget. I said to him that he had been great, that he had brought the room to burn and that he had to go on with this energy and power, he only started to step back into the light and the come back must have been hard I guess… He laughed, I later discovered that it was very hard for him to play live, that he always got sick before going on stage because he simply was that shy and it was each time a real improvement for him… From that day on I really got into his music and work and in some way identified a lot with it. I then went to see him play many times and in the last couple of years he toured, I saw him quite a lot… With the time, he became more used to touring and the gigs became more kind of professional and well prepared but always with a lot of surprises that only Daniel had the recipee of… I also came accross him quite some times during other gigs like at the Bauhaus reunion gig in Paris or at an Einsturzende Neubauten concert at la Villette, he had a true passion for music and not only pure rock'n roll. The day he passed away I cried, like if I was loosing a friend or someone very close and even now I still feel as if he was still there somewhere around, having a beer and telling jokes or playing on his harmonica in a smoky bar somewhere around La Bastille… I think that people like Daniel are without a doubt a true and profound influence to me, like a flikering light in the back of my mind that has brought me to finally ending up doing music myself... I hope we can share a beer again one day or another, up there in heaven or hell...




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