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24 February 1958

Roger Marie François Jouret was born in Brussels of a French father and Ukrainian mother. At the age of nine, he became a singer and drummer in the Buffalo Scouts Band, a group he formed with the Boy Scouts, who performed covers of Rolling Stones songs. He later formed a band called The Pelicans who performed at parties, later changing their name to Passing the Time, extending their act in bars, clubs and at festivals along the Dutch and Belgian coast. Later he was hired by pirate radio station Radio Veronica.

Meanwhile, he continued his education at the Music Academy studying music theory and percussion, passing his degree at the Athénée Adolphe Max. Whilst awaiting admission to the Royal Conservatory of Music in Brussels, he spent a year at the Saint-Luc Institute studying design. In 1973 he entered the Conservatory to study music theory, percussion and music history. Influenced by the punk movement, he started as a drummer in the band Hubble Bubble. In 1978 Hubble Bubble released their first of two albums, also titled Hubble Bubble. Jouret is credited as the songwriter, singer and drummer under the name Roger Junior. After the group disbanded he went solo. Together with producer Lou Depryck he created the persona of Plastic Bertrand, a jolly satire on the safety-pin image of punk (the name he got from Bert Bertrand, punk-journalist and later on singer of The Bowling Balls). A year later he made what would be one of the best selling singles by a Belgian artist ever : ‘Ca plane pour moi’ (All's well for me). Since that, Bertrand has continued to make music, with considerably less success though. His second album ‘Je t'fais un plan’ (I'll draw you a map) and the third release ‘L'album’ moved his musical direction steadily toward the new-wave scene, with exercises in reggae and synth pop in between.

Between 1982 and 1985 he lived in Milan, and millions of Italians followed his adventures in a photo-story of which he was the star. With Daniel Balavoine and ABBA's Anni-Frid Lyngstad, he recorded ‘Abbacadabra’, a musical tale for children. In 1987 he represented Luxembourg in the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Amour Amour. This failed to impress the juries, placing the country 21st out of 22 entries. In 1988, Plastic Bertrand hooked up with the Belgian New Beat-dance craze. His single ‘Slave to the beat’ was one of the more successful singles of this form of music (more than 50.000 copies sold).

In the nineties he formed the production company MMD with Pierrette Broodthaers. In the new millennium Plastic Bertrand hit the retro-scene living up many events with his biggest hit. Aside from a resurgence in his musical career, Plastic Bertrand made numerous guest appearances on European television. MMD also opened the ‘Broodthaers & Bertrand’ art gallery. in 2007 Ca Plane was used for a commercial for Coca Cola in Asia. In return Pepsi decided to use the same song in a translation by Elton Motello (Jet boy, jet girl) for their American commercial. A bizarre choice for Pepsi since the translated lyrics are about a 15-year-old boy's sexual relationship with another guy, who then rejects him for a girl. In 2009 he released a new album called 'Dandy bandits'. In 2010 Jouret got a big blowback when a judge decided that not him but producer Lou Deprijck was the singer on his first three albums (including the worldwide hit 'ça plane pour moi'.

On the web:

- Plastic Betrand's website: www.plasticbertrand.com

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

Oliver Mandiç (FRS Yugoslavia)

What do we think:

DB: This kind of music could only have come from Belgium. The Belgians have this ability to walk the thin line between humour and serious. My guess is that they are probably one of the most witty countries around and their sense of humour can compete with that of the Brits. To great frustration of the Dutch who find themselves much to serious for the southern neighbours. As also for Plastic’s hit ‘Ca plane pour moi’. Dutch music-critics place it amongst the worst song ever to come out of Belgium. But what Dutch sung song is still mentioned in the Billboard 100 as best punk song? Right, none. Plastic’s albums are maybe not really artistically high standing. But they do have some gems on them that will always lighten up your party. And he always tried to incorporate the new ‘hot’ style. For instance, try ‘Tous petite la planète’ from his second album of you’re looking for classic electro. To finish off just a short translation of a verse from his biggest hit:” Allez-oop! One morning / a darling came to my home / a cellophane puppet with Chinese hair / a plaster, a hangover / drank my beer in a large rubber glass / Oooo-ooo-ooo-ooo! / like an Indian in his igloo”. If anynone knows what the song is about feel free to e-mail us.


If you don't see the funny side of it, or you just can't stand the fact that he is not the best singer in the world...don't try it (PR).

♪♪♪ - AN1 - 1978

♪♪♪ - J'te fais un plan - 1979

♪♪ - L' Album - 1980

♪♪ - Suite diagonale - 1994

Ultra terestere - 2002

♪♪♪ - Dandy Bandit - 2009

Further listening:

Plastiquez vos baffles - 1981; Chat va - 1983; Pix - 1988

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


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