Johnny Hallyday

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About Johnny Hallyday

Known as the French Elvis, singer Johnny Hallyday was a national treasure who introduced his country to rock ’n’ roll, kicking off an unparalleled 60-year career. ∙ In 1960, his breakthrough hit—a hip-swiveling cover of Chubby Checker’s “Let’s Twist Again” called “Viens danser le twist”—spent seven weeks at No. 1 on the French charts and sold more than a million copies. ∙ After a near-riot by thousands of smitten Hallyday fans at France’s first-ever rock festival, 1961’s Festival de Rock, the nation instituted a months-long ban on all rock ’n’ roll shows. ∙ He recorded more than 1,000 songs and sold upwards of 100 million albums, putting him on par with John Lennon and Black Sabbath as one of the best-selling rock acts of all time. ∙ A trio of stadium shows in 1993 celebrating his 50th birthday drew 180,000 fans for a spectacle that included a towering New York stage set, a 20-piece band, and fireworks. ∙ The singer appeared in more than 30 movies, including 2002’s The Man on the Train, for which he won the Prix Jean Gabin award for Best Actor. ∙ Hallyday’s legendary free concert at the Eiffel Tower, 2000’s 100% Johnny: Live à la tour Eiffel, attracted more than 500,000 attendees and nearly 10 million TV viewers.

Paris, France
June 15, 1943
French Pop
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