Like the late great Nate Dogg once said: nobody did it better. And Nathaniel Hale and Serge Gainsbourg probably would have got along swimmingly, exhaling expensive smoke, sipping liquors you’d only find advertised in the Robb Report, and fine-tuning the ideology expressed in “Ain’t No Fun.” After all, the Parisian crooner put the gall in Gallic, a leering, lecherous genius who wrote swooning orchestral albums devoted to underage girls knocked out by his Rolls Royce. Before Kells there was Serge, huffing Gitanes and attempting to seduce everyone from Brigitte Bardot to Rita Marley to Whitney Houston. He knew about the power of numbers before Jurassic 5 and every 5 percenter.
The nabobs at Now-Again have cooked up a celebration for what would have been Serge’s 83rd birthday yesterday. It’s not totally true to form. There are no dancing Caberet Girls or no intimations of incest. Just esoteric tunes culled from his rarely discussed 70s soundtrack work. Few know the man’s catalog better than the imprint’s chief Egon, so rest assured these are all of fine vintage. And head to Now-Again’s website to read in-depth write-ups on the history behind each song. Rest in pandering, Serge.