Arkadia Chansons

The Historic Popular Music of France

Arkadia Chansons is a label dedicated to keeping alive the artful and consummately entertaining music of France and Europe’s legendary entertainers. Hear the passion of Edith Piaf, the debonaire Maurice Chevalier, the charm of Josephine Baker and Charles Trenet, the sophisticated Marlene Dietrich, the romance of Carlos Gardel and Tino Rossi, and the flamboyant Mistinguett, as well as other artists of the era. (continued below)

Arkadia Chansons logo

Possessed of style, energy, and passion, these magnetic entertainers were the minstrels of 20th Century Europe, performing songs that became a part of the everyday language of the street, of the café and of the boardroom. Culled from a recently discovered archive of pristinely preserved historic recordings, great efforts have been extended to obtain recording materials as close to the original source as possible.

These recordings have been completely re-mastered with today’s state-of the-art technology, in order to enhance the quality and remove imperfections, while remaining faithful to the sounds of the era in which they were made. In addition, new liner notes have been created and rarely seen period photos have been found to create a new graphic look for the series. All of these remastered collections are now available to a new audience, as well to old fans. Each Chanson CD features: state-of-the-art digital remastering, classic performances by historic French superstars, a minimum of 18 songs and almost one hour of music per album, new liner notes in English and never released tracks in this format.

The Arkadia Chansons catalog is available digitally from virtually all music streaming and download services, such as Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon, Deezer, YouTube, Pandora, etc. All albums are also available online and in select stores in CD format.

Here’s what the media have said about Arkadia Chansons:

“…this Arkadia Chansons release boasts many of the World War II-era pearls that helped make Piaf increasingly famous in the U.S.  One needn’t understand what Piaf is saying to realize just how magnificent a voice she had…the material is…perfect.” – Alex Henderson, All-Music Guide

This is the first recording of this kind that I have come across so far; accordion of vintage Paris!  This collection of accordion instrumental and songs comes from the beginning of the century: 1927 to 1942 and has been remastered superbly…This recording is a real pleasure to listen to and I believe there should be more CD’s out like this. – Tania Lukic-Marx, Accordions Worldwide

The NYC-based Arkadia Records label has taken an interesting turn in issuing these excellent collections of classic pre- and post-war French chanson recordings. Each volume is of exceptionally high calibre compared to the standard European imports, and now these remastered recordings are quite affordable and accessible to all us folks stateside.  The ACCORDEON collection has some dazzling displays of musicianship — it might be hard to listen to all at once, but if you’re a fan of the style, this set includes many of the best known French accordionists of the 1930s such as Gus Viseur and Tony Murena, and holds its own next to similar collections from France.  All the other albums are top-notch as well; the CHANSONS SOUS L’OCCUPATION disc is notable for the military strain that runs through these wartime recordings.  Also, it includes the famous anthem, “Lili Marlene”, which still conveys the passion of the times, even after all these decades.  This is an outstanding series — also worth checking into are the label’s profiles of individual artists, such as Josephine Baker, Edith Piaf and Charles Trenet…with even more on the way sometime soon. – Lawrence Kay,