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I suspect that the translator is there more as a security blanket, to protect against misunderstandings or language gaffes.
Françoise has always been known for her reticence and alludes to it early on in our conversation.
Ironically, it was a gift from her wayward father that helped catapult her from obscurity to European pop sensation.
On one of his few appearances at the family home, he brought her a guitar as a present for passing her baccalaureate.
Françoise quickly discovered that just by learning three or four chords she could create the kind of tunes she’d been hearing on Radio Luxembourg from the likes of Elvis Presley, Cliff Richard and Paul Anka.
Soon, she was composing her own songs at the rate of one a day.
Her grandmother constantly undermined the way she looked.But it was the flip side, ‘Tous Les Garçons et Les Filles’, which became a Europe-wide hit over the ensuing months, selling around two million copies – more than the legendary Edith Piaf achieved in 18 years.