Photo: Eddy Berthier

Stromae Honors Sex Workers In ‘Fils De Joie’ Video: Look + Listen

From the Belgian artist’s recent album, Multitude, Stromae released a video for “Fils de Joie.”

A creative collaboration between Henry Scholfield, Luc Van Haver, Coralie Barbier and Paul Van Haverhe, the clip takes place in a fictional country, centering around a funeral for a sex worker elevated to the status of heroine where Stromae pays tribute to the deceased woman.

In a statement about the video, Stromae said “The idea for ‘Fils de Joie’ came from watching Faustine Bollaert’s [French] talk show Ca Commence Aujourd’hui,” “One of her shows was dedicated to the children of sex workers. I was struck because I discovered a world that I did not know at all. A child testified by explaining that a client of his mother had come to tell him, ‘Ah well, yesterday I banged your mother.’ I found the phrase and the attitude most out of place. How can you afford to say such things to a child? I wanted to take everyone’s point of view since everyone has an opinion on her, but unfortunately we don’t often ask her for hers.” “I therefore speak in place of the son, the client, the pimp and the policeman. ‘Fils De Joie’ is in a way, a tribute to these women who do this very difficult work, very little recognized, but which exists and which will exist, whether we like it or not.”

Arriving March 4, Multitude is the musician’s third album which took inspiration from great Francophone singers Édith Piaf and Jacques Brel. “I think our job is to tell stories. That’s how I see [it],” Stromae explained. “I play with words… It’s a balance between personal and universal. It’s important for me that people can relate to my songs. If it’s too personal, I don’t think that’s really interesting.”

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Author: Saul Goode

Photo: Eddy Berthier