Jo Lemaire Bookmark and Share


5 January 1956

Jo Lemaire was born in Gembloux, a small town near Namen in Belgium. At the end of the nineteenseventies she starts her carreer together with her band; the bunch called themselves simply 'Jo Lemaire + Flouze'. It is 1979, the area of new wave, when their first album, 'Jo Lemaire + Flouze', was released. Thanks to its positive reception by both the public and chritics, it was followed by a second album, 'Precious time' in 1980.

'Pigmy world' was released in 1981 and contained the very succesful hit single 'Je suis venue te dire que je m’en vais', a cover of Serge Gainsbourg. The song succeeded to chart in many European countries and was Jo's official breakthrough. In 1982 Jo decided to persue a solo career and released her first solo album 'Concorde' in 1983. This album, with one French and one English side, went gold in Belgium and confirmed Jo's status in Belgium as one of the countries most creative and succesful artists of the area.

After a few years out of the limelights, Jo picked up her carreer in 1987 with the album 'Stand up', entirely sung in English. It was, to say the least, not her creative peak. She took revenge with her next album 'Duelle' in 1990 which contained a collection of intimitely arranged chansons, entirely sung in French. It went gold in Belgiumand was also well received in France. Her 1992 album 'Aujhourd'hui' was also sung in French, but the much more poppy tunes and synthesizer arrangements it lacked the impact of its predecessor.

In 1994 the album 'Liverpool' was released. Chritics did not apprecieate it. Nevertheles, 'La complainte pour St. Catherine', a cover of the song by the McGarrigel Sisters and now recorded as a duet with Carmel McCourt, became a small hit succes. The album 'Jour et nuit', rleased in 1997, contained a collection of high quality chansons, all sung in French. On this album, some famous musicians and songwriters contributed, like Frank Boeijen and Wigbert Van Lierde. That same year she participates in the 'Night of the Proms' in Antwerp, a major music spectacle. Fiveteen nights in a row she performed, with several other artists like the Simple Minds, for over 18,000 spectators in total.

In 1998 Jo participated in the theatre spectacle 'Brel Blues', which contained nineteen compositions by Jacques Brel, performed in Dutch. She must have liked singing in Dutch, because her next album 'Enkelvoud’ consisted entirely of Dutch translations of her songs.Together with famous Dutch female singer Liesbeth List she performs a series of concerts in Leiden in the Netherlands, interpreting songs by Brel and Piaf. In 1999 Jo started a solo concert tour, ‘Une Vie’, entirely dedicated to Edith Piaf. The tour was extremely succesful and until this day, Jo performed the show almost 200 times. Its premiere in Brussels 'Ancienne Belgique' was recorded live and was released as a cd-album.

After being elected 'Most popular Walonian personality' by the youngsters of ‘De Morgen', she starts a concert tour specially for young students in the Flemish parts of Belgium. Her aim is to create interest for the French language.

In 2001 Jo finaly released an album with new material. ‘Flagrants délices’, contained a collection of beautiful composed and performed French songs. It was received very well by the chritics, claiming it to be Jo's best record ever. Her next album is the double cd 'Jo prends la mer' containing old and new songs. The album was followed by a concert tour that even brought her to perform for Belgium queen Paola.

On the web:

- Jo's website: http://www.jolemaire.be

If you like this, you probably like... / european counterparts:

Inga + Annette Humpe (Germany)

Frank Boeijen (Holland)

What do we think:

PR: Jo definitely is a unique artist. She sings in French, English and Dutch but still maintains a special 'Belgium flavour'. Her voice is deep, dark and strong. The quality of her albums is somewhat inconsistent. Jo's live performances are always very well received by both public and press. If you want to start your Lemaire-collection, the great album 'Duelle' is your best buy.

DB: I've known Jo from the time when she had a small hit with the Gainsbourg cover 'Je venue te dire que je m'on vais'. Blessed with an intriging voice she has international potential although she stayed a bit of a Belgian phenomenon. Nice and jazzy.


Jo Lemaire + Flouze - 1979

Precious time - 1980

♪♪♪♪ - Pigmy World - 1981

♪♪♪ - Concorde - 1983

♪♪ - Jo Lemaire - 1984

♪ - Stand up - 1987

♪♪♪♪♪ - Duelle - 1990

♪♪ - Aujourd'hui - 1992

♪♪ - Liverpool - 1994

♪♪♪ - Jour et nuit - 1997

♪♪ - Enkelvoud - 1998

♪♪♪ - Une vie, Jo Lemaire chante Piaf live - 1999

♪♪♪♪ - Flagrants délices - 2001

♪♪♪ - Jo prends la mer - 2003

♪♪♪♪♪ = outstanding album, an absolute must-have
♪♪♪♪ = great album, highly recomended
♪♪♪ = nice album
♪♪ = be careful, requires listening before buying
♪ = best to be avoided


Like us on
Your newsletter

Do you want to receive our monthly newsletter? Just tick in your e-mail adress below and stay in touch.

You will receive an e-mail message (sorry, in Dutch) that you have to confirm.