Olivier Libaux is a French record producer, songwriter and guitar player (born on May 5th 1964 in Boulogne-Sur-Mer, France).
A founding member of cult French band “Les Objets”, co-founder of the famous “Nouvelle Vague” project – covering punk/new wave songs in a boss nova style – he is the producer of “Uncovered QOTSA”.
After playing with several bands, Olivier founded French pop band “Les Objets” with Jérôme “Ignatus” Rousseaux in 1988.
Les Objets released 2 albums – “La Normalité” in 1991 (produced by Jamie Lane) and “Qui set qui ?” (produced by Mark Wallis) in 1994 on Columbia/Sony Music.
Michel Gondry, who would later become internationally famous, directed 2 videos of theirs, “La Normalité” and “Sarah”.
Les Objets happened to be one of the first 90′s “Pop Française” act, inspired by The Smiths, The Pale Fountains or The Monochrome Set – although singing in French.
While in Les Objets, Olivier started a number of collaborations as a musician and guitarist, with Emilie Simon, Katerine, Helena Noguerra, Carla Bruni, Jean-François Coen, Alex Gopher, Arielle, Bill Pritchard, Lacquer, Doriand, Prudence…
In 2003 Olivier Libaux released, on Naive, his first solo album, a musical comedy entitled L’Héroïne au bain, featuring the voices of Helena Noguerra, Philippe Katerine, Lio, Doriand, Ludovic Triaire, Dominique Dalcan and Michael von Der Heide. The album was a critical success – an article in Les Cahiers Du Cinéma praised its ‘cinematic’ qualities – but it failed to achieve significant sales.
His second album Imbécile, came out in 2007 on the label Discograph. The songs on this “scripted” album tell the story of four characters at a dinner party. The interpreters are Philippe Katerine, Helena Noguerra, J. P. Nataf and Barbara Carlotti. On stage Katerine and Noguerra were replaced by Bertrand Belin and Armelle Pioline out of the group Holden. The show, based on the record, mixed concert and theatre performance. The album was a critical and commercial success, particularly the song Le Petit Succès, sung by Barbara Carlotti.
In 2004, Olivier Libaux created the musical project Nouvelle Vague with Marc Collin. They covered songs from the punk and new-wave eras, but arranged in bossa nova style.
The songs were sung by young female singers most of whom did not know the original versions.
Their first album, entitled Nouvelle Vague, released on the Peacefrog label sold 500,0000 copies worldwide and gave them the opportunity to tour in 35 countries.
Nouvelle Vague then released 3 more albums : “Bande a Part” in 2006, “3″ in 2009 and “Couleurs Sur Paris” in 2010.
On “3″ album, they featured Martin Gore (Depeche Mode), Ian Mc Cullough (Echo And The Bunnymen), Barry Adamson (Magazine), Terry Hall (The Specials), Chris Bailey (The Saints), Samy Birnbach (Minimal Compact) on their own covers.
The audience of Nouvelle Vague comprises veterans and nostalgics of the new-wave era as well as younger people who are discovering the songs.
In may 2011, Olivier asked Josh Homme (Queens Of The Stone Age) his authorization to cover Queens Of The Stone Age songs in a “personal” way, in order to create a “unusual tribute album”, with the help of many talented female singers.
Josh Homme answered “Fantastic Idea. Go for it and let me hear the album when you’re finished”.
Olivier then produced the album “Uncovered Queens Of The Stone Age” on his own label “Music For Music Lovers”, featuring Emiliana Torrini, Alela Diane, Skye (Morcheeba), Clare Manchon (Clare And The Reasons), Susan Dillane (Woodbine, Death In Vegas), Gaby Moreno, Ambrosia Parsley (Shivaree), Inara George, Rosemary Standley (Moriarty), Youn Sun Nah, and Katharine Whalen (Squirrel Nut Zippers).
The album is coming out in 2013.
To be continued…
Photo credit : Robert Leslie