1980, a year of transition

When I dedicate a page on a Quebec tour, I like to recall certain facts. This allows us to better understand the context of the time. In 1980, Nana came back to Montreal and relished the success of an album distributed throughout North America. That same year, two major events marked our topicalities. Let's relive most of these memories.

NR. 1 IN CANADA

For the year 1980, Nana is proclaimed Nr. 1 of world singers in Canada. That distinction follows the big success of the album "Roses & Sunshine". It has sold more than 300,000 copies and generated two singles: "Nickels & Dimes" and "Even Now". Meanwhile, in Quebec, "Une voix qui vient du coeur" has become her most popular album. Even after several years, it remains on the charts thanks to the song "Le temps qu'il nous reste". In addition to them, "Come with me", released in September, finds more than 200,000 takers. And like every year, during the Christmas period, "Christmas with" becomes a best seller on both markets.

At the peak of her popularity in the country, Nana doesn't realize that the distribution of her records is in full transition. The same year, London Records, her company since 1963, ceases operations. Polygram, also based in Montreal, recovers their catalog and reprints 20 of her albums. In the meantime, Cachet Records, a Toronto-based firm publishes her new productions during one year throughout North American and goes bankrupt. Grand Records, another Canadian company, takes over her distribution. These changes take place within a few months and does not affect Nana's career. Morever, during that year, she gives 43 concerts in Canada.

IN MONTREAL

After a short visit in January to participate in the anniversary gala of her impresario, Samuel Gesser, Nana comes back to Montreal to begin a tour of eastern Canada and the United States.The three concerts she gives replace those canceled in June 1979 due to a loss of voice. However, Montrealers get a different program with new titles in Greek such as "Chimera" which opens the concert as well as several songs from her latest album "Vivre au soleil". And above all, they find her in full voice. More relaxed, for some songs, she takes the microphone in her hands and even does some dance steps. During the evening, Nana wears three stage costumes: two white dresses and a multicolored tunic. The live album "Concert 80", recorded during the previous months in Germany, gives us a good idea of the atmosphere that reigned. While listening to it, we discover the musical accompaniment and her interpretations of that time.

 

With the exception of two pages, the French program is identical with the one of the last tour.

The English program:


APRIL 1980
Sunday
Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
1
2
3
4
5
             
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
             
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
 
Montréal
Montréal
Sherbrooke
 
Fredericton, NB
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
Halifax, NS
Halifax, NS
 
London, ON
Kitchener, ON
North Bay, ON
Sudbury, ON
27
28
29
30
Sault Ste-Marie, ON
Thunder Bay, ON
 
Pittsburgh, PA
     

MAY 1980
Sunday
Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
1
2
3
       
Worcester, MA
 
Miami, FL
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Palm Beach, FL

Dallas, TX

Houston, TX
Dayton, OH
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Toledo, OH

Cleveland, OH
Buffalo, NY
Toronto, ON
Toronto, ON
   
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
             
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
             
 

Concert of April 14, 1980 at Place des Arts:

First part:

01- Introduction & Chimera
02- Un beau matin à la fraîche
03- Love is a rose
04- Mia fora ki enan kairo
05- Finis ta chanson sans moi
06- Even now
07- Vivre au soleil
08- La belle est au jardin d'amour
09- Opa ni-na-nai
10- Yesterday's dreams
11- Quand tu chantes
12- Pardonne-moi
13- Casta diva

Second part:

01- L'été en hiver
02- Roses Love Sunshine
03- Le curé de Terrebonne (duet with Bernard Papillon)
04- Tomorrow is a long time
05- Comme un soleil
06- 372 (The Olympians)
07- Choros zeimbekidon
08- Parle-moi
09- Turn on the sun
10- Le temps qu'il nous reste
11- Le ciel est noir
12- The three bells
13- Plaisir d'amour
14- C'est mon histoire / Nickels & dimes
15- Autumn leaves
16- Guantanamera
17- Cucurrucucu paloma

 

FOCUS ON QUEBEC TOPICALITIES

THE 1980 REFERENDUM

That North American tour coincides with the referendum campaign of 1980. Through a vote, the Quebec government asks for a mandate to negotiate a sovereignty-association agreement with the rest of Canada. This agreement would allow Quebec to make all its laws, collect its taxes and establish its relations abroad. On stage, Nana and her musicians briefly mention it with humor.

On May 20, 1980, historic date, Quebecers have a rendezvous with democracy, as will do Catalonia and Scotland in the 2000s. It takes place without violence, at a time when people are more politicized. The results: 40.44% in favor of the YES option and 59.56% of the NO vote. For René Lévesque, the Parti Québécois leader, Premier of Quebec and instigator of that popular consultation, the defeat is bitter because it is the culmination of twenty years' work. The same evening, he delivers a conciliatory and comforting speech to his activists: «If I understand you correctly, you are telling me: "Until the next time."»

THE FLORALIES INTERNATIONALES DE MONTRÉAL

Another memorable event for Quebec is held during the summer season, from May to September: The Montreal Floralies. That first floral exhibition in North America attracts more than two million visitors. Whether it be at the Olympic velodrome or on Notre-Dame Island, horticulture lovers get an eyeful with an incredible variety of trees, plants and flowers from 23 countries. To complement their visit, they can attend educational presentations and concerts.

A LANDMARK YEAR

1980 is not a turning point but rather a year of transition. In English Canada, Nana is a recognized artist and from now on each of her new albums receives more attention. These also allow her to break more and more into the US market. As for Quebec, this is a landmark year as were 1967 and 1976. Once again, its topicality is widely covered by the international press.