Charles Aznavour

Charles Aznavour ( AZ-nə-VOOR, French: [ʃaʁl aznavuʁ]; born Shahnour Vaghinag Aznavourian, Armenian: Շահնուր Վաղինակ Ազնավուրեան, Shahnur Vaghinak Aznavuryan; 22 May 1924 – 1 October 2018) was a French singer, lyricist, actor and diplomat. Aznavour was known for his distinctive vibrato tenor voice: clear and ringing in its upper reaches, with gravelly and profound low notes. In a career as a composer, singer and songwriter, spanning over 70 years, he recorded more than 1,200 songs interpreted in 9 languages. Moreover, he wrote or co-wrote more than 1,000 songs for himself and others. Aznavour is regarded as one of the greatest songwriters of all time and an icon of 20th-century pop culture.

One of France's most popular and enduring singers, he was dubbed France's Frank Sinatra, while music critic Stephen Holden described Aznavour as a "French pop deity". Several media outlets described him as the most famous Armenian of all time. In 1998, Aznavour was named Entertainer of the Century by CNN and users of Time Online from around the globe. He was recognized as the century's outstanding performer, with nearly 18% of the total vote, edging out Elvis Presley and Bob Dylan. Jean Cocteau once said: "Before Aznavour despair was unpopular".

Aznavour sang for presidents, popes and royalty, as well as at humanitarian events. In response to the 1988 Armenian earthquake, he founded the charitable organization Aznavour for Armenia along with his long-time friend impresario Levon Sayan. In 2008, he was granted Armenian citizenship, and was appointed ambassador of Armenia to Switzerland the following year, as well as Armenia's permanent delegate to the United Nations at Geneva.

He started his last world tour in 2014. On 24 August 2017, Aznavour was awarded the 2,618th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Later that year, he and his sister, Aida Aznavourian, were awarded the Raoul Wallenberg Award for sheltering Jews during World War II. His concert at the NHK Hall in Osaka, on 19 September 2018, would be his final performance.

Between 1974 and 2016, Charles Aznavour officially received around sixty gold and platinum records around the world, representing several million cumulative sales. He's one of the few French performers to hold a certification from the Recording Industry Association of America. At the time of his death, according to his record company, the total sales of the artist's recordings were over 180 million units.

Birth and Death Data: Born May 22, 1924 (6th arrondissement of Paris), Died October 1, 2018 (Mouriès)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1946 - 1955

Roles Represented in DAHR: lyricist, songwriter, composer

= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.

Recordings

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Columbia (U.K.) CL8189 10-in. 6/27/1946 J'ai bu Jo Boyer ; Georges Ulmer ; Jean Valz Male vocal solo, with orchestra songwriter  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8421 10-in. 7/2/1947 Départ-express Ginette Garcin ; Jacques Hélian Orchestre ; Zappy Max Female-male vocal duet, with instrumental ensemble lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8564 10-in. 7/21/1948 Il pleut Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8571 10-in. 9/1/1948 Cinq filles a marier Compagnons de la Chanson Vocal ensemble lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8679 10-in. 5/16/1949 C'est un gars Aimé Barelli ; Lucienne Delyle Female vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8848 10-in. 7/12/1950 C'est un gars Robert Chauvigny ; Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8854 10-in. 7/10/1950 Il y avait Robert Chauvigny ; Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra songwriter  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8976 10-in. 4/13/1951 Rien de rien Robert Chauvigny ; Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL9007 10-in. 7/4/1951 Une enfant Robert Chauvigny ; Choeur Raymond Saint-Paul ; Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra and vocal ensemble composer, lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL9035 10-in. 10/15/1951 Plus bleu que tes yeux Robert Chauvigny ; Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra songwriter  
Columbia (U.K.) CL9036 10-in. 10/15/1951 Je hais les dimanches Robert Chauvigny ; Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL9065 10-in. 11/8/1951 Jezebel Robert Chauvigny ; Choeur Raymond Saint-Paul ; Edith Piaf Female vocal solo, with orchestra and vocal ensemble lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL9243 10-in. 6/8/1952 Viens Robert Chauvigny ; Jacques Pills Male vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL9419 10-in. approximately 1952 Et bailler, et dormir Jean Bretonniere ; Jacques-Henry Rys Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL9947 10-in. approximately 1954 La bagarre Annie Cordy ; Jerry Mengo Female vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble lyricist  
Columbia (U.K.) CL10008 10-in. 2/16/1955 A t'regarder Robert Chauvigny ; Jacques Pills Male vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Aznavour, Charles," accessed July 14, 2024, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/356040.

Aznavour, Charles. (2024). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved July 14, 2024, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/356040.

"Aznavour, Charles." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2024. Web. 14 July 2024.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/356040

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