All inducted songs
  • Year Inducted: 2019
  • Written In: 1970
Yvon Deschamps Lyricist
Jacques Perron Composer
Yvon Deschamps
Ginette Reno
Monique Leyrac
Laurence Jalbert
Diane Dufresne
Judi Richards
Isabelle Boulay
Ariane Moffat
Aimons-nous is a song that has withstood the test of time and left a permanent mark on Québec’s music history.

It was composed and arranged by musical director Jacques Perron, while the lyrics were penned by Yvon Deschamps, and Réal Ayotte helped with the three-voice harmonies alongside Perron and Deschamps.

The three-minute-long song was initially released on Deschamps’s album Le p’tit Jésus/Le foetus/La honte (1970) his third collection of monologues which wryly look at Québec’s society from a cultural, social and political perspective using his acerbic humour on unions, racism and intolerance. Aimons-nous was the counterpoint to his monologue titled Le P’tit Jésus.

Clémence Desrochers gave Deschamps a piece of advice: “when you don’t know how to end your monologue, sing a song.” The first song he included in his live shows were Aimons-nous and Dans ma cour and Yvon Deschamps will write nearly sixty more over the course of his career.

Its instrumentation is classic—guitar, piano, bass and drums—and it talks about tenderness and humanism.

Aimons-nous quand même (Let’s love each other despite everything)
Aimons-nous jour après jour (Let’s love each other day after day)
Aimons-nous quand même (Let’s love each other despite everything)
Aimons-nous malgré l’amour (Let’s love each other despite love)
Aimons-nous de rage (Let’s love each out of rage)
Aimons-nous, mais sans pitié (Let’s love each other but without pity)
Aimons-nous en cage (Let’s love each other in a cage)
Aimons-nous sans amitié (Let’s love each other without friendship)

Jacques Perron and his band Vos Voisins accompanied Yvon Deschamps on stage from 1969 to 1973 when his shows at Théâtre Maisonneuve were increasingly frequent, and Aimons-nous was a crowd favourite.

The song was one of the highlights of the show 1 fois 5, in 1975, when Yvon Deschamps celebrated Saint-Jean-Baptiste on Mount Royal alongside such luminaries as Gilles Vigneault, Claude Léveillé, Jean-Pierre Ferland and Robert Charlebois, a historical event that was released on a double album of the same name.
Aimons-nous was also rereleased on the boxed set Yvon Deschamps Volume 1 “Les années 60-70” (2004 GSI Musique, BMDVD3568), six different versions were released on the “Aimons-nous » ’ EP in 2012, in the “L’intégrale 1958–2008” boxed set, and that’s not to mention the great number of times it has been covered by artists such as Ginette Reno, Monique Leyrac, Nicola Ciccone, Laurence Jalbert, Dan Bigras, Isabelle Boulay, Deschamps’s wife Judi Richards and their daughters Karine and Sarah-Émilie, and, above all, by Diane Dufresne on her 2015 album Deschampsons.

In 2017, Aimons-nous took on a whole new meaning in the wake of the attack on Québec City great mosque. Ariane Moffat, Karim Ouellet and La Bronze—who sang part of the song in Arabic—turned Aimons-nous into a hymn to diversity and the song reached the top of the iTunes chart in Canada.

Deux mille ans de haine (Two thousand years of hatred)
N’ont rien changé à l’amour (Have not changed love in any way)
Pour briser nos chaînes (To break our chains)
Sonnent canons et tambours (Canons and drums resound)
C’est l’amour qui gronde (It’s the growl of love)
L’amour avance à grands pas (Love takes big strides)
Par amour du combat (For the love of combat)
Je t’aime, tu m’aimes, il l’aime (I love you, you love me, he loves them)
One day, someone heckled Deschamps and said: “Stop singing that song, you sing badly!” To which he replied: “Can’t be that bad, seeing as everyone is singing along!”

Yvon Deschamps was made a knight of the National Order of Québec in 2001, he won the Governor General’s Award for Performing Arts and was made a compagnon of the Ordre des arts et des lettres du Québec in 2017.

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