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Traductions de rock songs + histoire, contexte, vidéos et reprises. Songs translations + covers. All in English/French!


Velvet U. - Sweet Jane

Sweet Jane est une chanson de Lou Reed pour le quatrième et dernier album du Velvet Underground, Loaded en 1970.

Sweet Jane is a Lou Reed song featuring first in the fourth and last Velvet Underground LP, Loaded in 1970.




Ça ne parle pas de marijuana, contrairement à ce que le titre pourrait laisser entendre. Mais plutôt de différentes perceptions des choses par différentes générations. Voir en bas pour une série d'interprétations pertinentes.



Au sujet de la chanson :


Je n'ai pas traduit le titre, tout le monde le comprend. Cela eusse sonné comme Douce Jane, hum... Douce "Sweet Jane", chère chanson de mon adolescence...

C'est à cause de cette chanson que je regrette de ne pas savoir jouer de la guitare...



The Velvet Underground - Sweet Jane

Debout à un carrefour
Une valise a la main
Jack porte son corsage, et Jane son gilet
Moi, baby,  je suis dans un groupe de rock
Au volant d'une Stutz Bearcat, Jim
Tu sais c'était une autre époque
Tous les poètes ont étudié des rangées de vers
Et toutes les femmes ont levé les yeux au ciel

Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane

J'vais te dire, Jack est devenu banquier
Et Jane une employée de bureau
Tous les deux mettent des sous de côié
Et ils rentrent chez eux après le travail
Assis au coin du feu
La radio joue un peu de classique, Jim
Comme la marche des soldats de bois
Tous les gamins protestataires
Et l'on peut entendre Jack dire

Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane

Il y a des gens qui aiment sortir danser
Et d'autres qui doivent aller bosser
Et regarde-moi bien là
Et t'auras toujours de mauvaises mères
Pour te dire que tout est juste dégueulasse
Les femmes ne se pâment jamais vraiment
Que les vauriens clignent toujours des yeux
Et que seuls les enfants rougissent
Car la vie n'est que faite pour mourir
Mais quiconque a un cœur
Ne veut se retourner et casser les codes
Quiconque ayant toujours joué son rôle
Ne veut se retourner et faire semblant

Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane.

Studio VU 1970 :

Mes autres traductions de textes de Lou Reed :

http://www.rocktranslation.fr/tag/lou%20reed/ ​​​​



Best ever live version, in the best ever live live album (recorded December 1973) : the musicians arranged it so well that he sacked them after that tour...


The Cowboy Junkies cover : 

The Velvet Underground - Sweet Jane

Standin' on a corner
Suitcase in my hand
Jack's in his corset and Jane is in her vest
And me I'm in a rock n' roll band
Ridin' in a Stutz Bear cat, Jim
You know those were different times
All the poets studied rows of verse,
And all the ladies rolled their eyes

Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane

I tell you somthing Jack, he is a banker,
And Jane, she is a clerk
And both of them save their monies
When they come home from work
Sittin' by the fire...
The radio does play the classical music dance Jim
The march of the wooden soldiers
All your protest kids
You can hear Jack say

Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane

Some people lhey like to go out dancing
And other people they have to work
Just watch me now
And there's even some evil mothers
They gonna tell you that everything is just dirt
You know that women never really faint
And that villains always blink their eyes
And that children are the only ones who blush
And that life is just to die
But, anyone who has a heart
Wouldn't want to turn around and break it
And anyone who ever played the part
He wouldn't want to turn around and fake it

Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane, Sweet Jane.




A web post in 2010 about the song :

Lou wrote lots of songs about drugs...and transvestites for that matter...but Sweet Jane is not either. It's about correcting the misplaced notion among the "protest kids" that prior generations were trapped in society's shackles and that only the current generation knows how to live free of them. The singer realizes the falsehood in those premises for both generations -- we all alternate between living honestly and dishonestly, following our heart and playing a part. The song is an appeal for inter-generational understanding, as clearly summed up in the final lines...which he screams to make sure you're hearing them:

>But anyone who ever had a heart
>They wouldn't turn around and break it
>And anyone who ever played a part
>They wouldn't turn around and hate it

Narratively, Jack & Jane are an older couple the singer sees on the street. He immediately makes assumptions about them based on their dress. Jack is in a "corset"...a derisive metaphor for restrictive garb, likely a business suit. Jane is likewise dressed for work in a vest. But the singer catches himself in his derision by noting that he's also wearing something "put on"...his rock & roll band...and laughes at his own hypocrisy. 

What follows is a reverie on what he imagines their life to have been...they were young once too and wild in their own right. Then they got older, settled into life, and made a trade-off (working for a living) in order to enjoy the comforts of love (settling down by the fire with their music). In particular, he wants the protest kids to hear that last part...those compromises they deride were all done for the love of Sweet Jane. 

In the final verse, the singer acknowledges that although people make different choices, we're all basically the same...it's only self-deception that makes us intolerant of the other camp. Isn't he working at his band after all ("Just watch me now")? And all of those people who hurl dirt at the other camp -- call them dishonest and affected -- well they're just angry because they haven't found life's purpose yet. Maybe that's art (rock & roll) and maybe that's love (Jane), but without it there is no point. Along the way, we all put on dishonest garb in the morning and strip it off at the end of the day. So we all need to be a little more forgiving, because:

>But anyone who ever had a heart
>They wouldn't turn around and break it
>And anyone who ever played a part
>They wouldn't turn around and hate it



Another good post I read :

This is a narrative on how life forces some people to compromise their ideals, and how as we age our priorities sometimes change. 

There are three sets of characters in the song, the singer (in a rock n roll band), Jack and Jane (in a relationship), and Jim (who drives a race car).

The proclamation, "Sweet Jane" is literally Jack's love for Jane (but also probably just a general reference to finding your muse). 

The song follows characters through the latter parts of their lives from fun-loving and free-wheeling adventure with big dreams (standing on the corner off to somewhere with a suitcase-different times in which men studied poetry and drove race cars--etc) to, some, "workin for the man" (both Jack and Jane now have jobs to make money). Others live out their dream (the singer is obviously still in a rock n roll band). And still others keep doing what they have always done (Jim sounds like he never grows up in the singer's eyes and is still defending his ideals).

Jack and Jane, the lovers, now come home and cut loose with each other by the fire, listening to classical music--a departure from their old ideals in which they were poets and dreamers. 

The reference to the "wooden soldiers" is a reference to Babes in Toyland in which the soldiers defend the children's fantasy kingdom from evil--which he follows with a line about "protest kids," possibly alluding to them being the wooden soldiers now defending their dreams and fantasies. Jim, referenced directly before the wooden soldiers line, sounds like he is still a protester and grouped in with this bunch, a rebel, an idealist. 

The last verse, he is singing about how some may say life may be plain and boring ("Evil mothers" will tell you "truths" about how things are and how life is "just dirt"), but that it holds beauty. And, even though life sucks ("you know... Life is just to die"), if you ever find love or your place in life, and you have a heart or enough sense to know it, that you would be a fool to something that makes life so worthwhile, that beautiful thing. 


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