A song by the Tee Set, a Delft band singing in English a song with a French title and a couple of lines in French. Acoustic-based good-time music of the day (1969), tinged with a little sadness and a little blue-eyed soul. The band had been one of those mid-60s beat groups, formed in the ongoing wake of the Beatles, et al, but personnel changes (and head changes) left them a different band than they were in 1965. They still exist, I think.

It was a Dutch hit, but an American record exec heard it in a discotheque in Zurich and took a liking to it. He searched out the band (the song was released on their own Teeset Records), in an attempt to secure the US rights to the song; during this process, he also scored the rights to Shocking Blue's "Venus", and the two songs, some time later, went to #1 ("Venus") and #2 ("Ma Belle Amie") in the States.

A record collecting mentor of mine (now, sadly, deceased) during my adolescence bought a warehouse full of old 45s for the record store he was opening; he asked me to make a list of records I might want to have him set aside for me. My list ended up including, among other things, every obscure one-hit wonder or out-of-print curio from my childhood that I thought might be nice to hear again. It was a long list; this was one of the songs. I still have it somewhere.


Ma belle amie
You were a child of the sun
And the sky and the deep blue sea
Ma belle amie
Après tous les beaux jours
Je te dis merci merci
You were the answer of all my questions
Before we're through
I want to tell you that I adore you
And always do
That you amaze me by leaving me now
And start anew
Ma belle amie I'm in love with you

Let the bells ring
Let the birds sing
Let's all give my substitute a big cheer
Let the bells ring
Let the birds sing
For the man after him waits here
For the man after him waits here


Ma belle amie
You were a child of the sun
And the sky and the deep blue sea
Ma belle amie
There was a time that you thought
That your only friend was me
You were the answer of all my questions
Before we're through
I want to tell you that I adore you
And always do
That you amaze me by leaving me now
And start anew
Ma belle amie I'm in love with you

Let the birds sing
Let's all give my substitute a big cheer
Let the bells ring
Let the birds sing
For the man after him waits here
For the man after him waits here

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