Serge Gainsbourg/Biography/1987-1991

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February: Release of Charlotte Gainsbourg's debut album Charlotte forever.

Release of Jane Birkin's album Lost song, written and composed by Serge Gainsbourg.

March: Jane Birkin sings for the first time at the Bataclan.

October: Release of the album You're under arrest, including a reprise of "Mon légionnaire" and the anti-drugs song "Aux enfants de la chance". After four days the album goes gold: more than 100'000 copies are sold.


22 March: The first of seven concerts at the Zénith in Paris. The shows start at 9 PM. But the waiting isn't too boring since Gainsbarre projects his collection of Tex Avery on the video screen.

29 March: Concert in Reims.

30 March: Concert in Bruxelles.

31 March: Concert in Lille.

1 April: Concert in Rouen.

3 April: Concert in Bourges at the festival "Le printemps de Bourges". Also on the bill are Jerry Lee Lewis, Viktor Lazlo, Murray Head, Jane Birkin, Alpha Blondy, Southside Johnny, Johnny Clegg, Ray Charles, and the Communards.

19 April: Concert in Laval.

20 April: Concert in Rennes.

21 April: Concert in Nantes.

22 April: Concert in Bordeaux.

23 April: Concert in Montluçon.

25 April: Concert in Dijon.

26 April: Concert in Clermont-Ferrand.

27 April: Concert in Lyon.

28 April: Concert in Besançon.

29 April: Concert in Annecy.

30 April: Concert in Lausanne.

2 May: Concert in Marseille.

3 May: Concert in Montpellier.

4 May: Concert in Toulouse.

5 May: Concert in Toulon.

6 May: Concert in Nice.

7 May: Concert in Saint-Etienne.

9 May: Concert in Grenoble.

10 May: Concert in Mulhouse.

11 May: Concert in Strasbourg.

12 May: Concert in Metz.

13 May: Concert in Epinal.

14 May: Concert in Tours.

July: Concert at the festival "Francofolies" in La Rochelle.

Concert in Montreux (??).


January: Serge Gainsbourg is hospitalized for several reasons: he fears to get blind! He suffers diabetic retinopathy as a consequence of a bad digestion of the blood sugar by the sick liver. His doctors have told him: "Si vous continuez de boire, dans un an vous êtes aveugle et dans deux ans vous n'êtes lus là..."

March: Release of Bambou's debut album Made in China, written and composed by Serge Gainsbourg.

14 April: Serge undergoes an operation at the hospital Beaujon in Paris. After a six hours operation two thirds of his liver are removed by professor Fekete, specialist in digestive surgery.

22 April: Serge leaves the hosiptal.

May: Serge goes out for the first time since his operation: in the cinema La Pagode he watches the beautiful clip of Bambou for "Nuit de Chine", an excerpt from her album Made in China.

Release of the double album Le Zénith de Gainsbourg with three unreleased songs, among them "Hey man amen".

10 May: To celebrate the release of his album, Serge invites himself in the TV show Nulle part ailleurs on Canal+.

20 June: Serge starts shooting his fourth and last movie as a director, Stan the Flasher.

September: Release of the box set De Gainsbourg à Gainsbarre consisting of 9 CDs, including all of his albums plus B-sides and soundtracks. As the commercial says, "Gainsbourg n'attend pas d'être mort pour être immortel". Meanwhile he has started drinking again.

End of September: Serge Gainsbourg is invited by Patrick Sabatier for the premiere of the TV show Et si on se disait tout... on TF1, and, in fact, he doesn't hide anything big: "Mon deal avec la mort ne regarde personne, que je reboive et que je refume, c'est mon problème", he drops. This evening he doesn't ease the ones who love him. Lighting one cigarette after another, ironically commenting a recent report on him in which he mixed an explosive cocktail, he confirms that he is back and back for his good intentions.

One week later: Victim of a new heart disease, Serge is taken to the Hôpital Américain in Neuilly, the same where he stayed after his heart-attack in 1973.

December: Jimmy Somerville and June Miles-Kingston's duet "Comment te dire adieu" reaches number 14 in the British charts. The song is also released in three additional mixes ("commercial mix", "Madame Tata mix", "remix") and is included on Jimmy Somervilles album Read my lips (1989).


4 March: Premiere of the movie Stan the Flasher (directed by Serge Gainsbourg) in Paris. It includes Claude Berri, Richard Bohringer and Elodie Bouchez.

5 May: Joëlle Ursull is on the second place at the Concours Eurovision with "White and black blues" (words by Serge Gainsbourg).

May: Release of the Vanessa Paradis album Variations sur le même t'aime with elevn texts by Serge Gainsbourg.

August: Serge spends the month in Vézelay, at the Hôtel de l'espérance.

September: Release of the Jane Birkin album Amours des feintes featuring the ten last songs by Serge, recorded in February 1990.

12 October: In the TV broadcast Tous à la une dedicated to Jane Birkin, she sings with Serge at the piano, "Unknown producer", a song dedicated to their producer Philippe Lerichomme.

20 October: Télé zèbre is the last TV show in which Serge Gainsbourg appears. Françoise Hardy explains his astrological profile to him.

December: Serge spends the month in Vézelay, at the Hôtel de l'espérance.

31 December: Serge organises fireworks for his son, "p'tit Lulu".


January: Serge and Charlotte fly to Barbados where they spend some days together.

25 January: Serge spends the night at the Ritz Club with some friends. It's his last official going out. He goes out on another night, discretly dining with a friend, but after that he doesn't quit his refuge at the 5bis, rue de Verneuil anymore.

2 March: Serge Gainsbourg dies in his "hôtel particulier" on 5bis, rue de Verneuil. The night before, the radio stations received the first copies of Serge's new single, a dance remix of his "Requiem pour un con"...

7 March: Funeral at the cemetary of Montparnasse. Catherine Deneuve reads the text of "Fuir le bonheur de peur qu'il ne se sauve" as an eulogy.