inspired by Zidane hits No. 1 on French charts
Three weeks after France’s World
Cup final soccer defeat, the song inspired by
captain Zinedine Zidane’s fateful head-butt
on Italy defender Marco Materazzi has hit number
one in the nation’s singles chart.
“As of today, it’s No. 1 in the
French charts. It has had an exceptional start,
better than we could ever have hoped for,” said
Thierry Chassagne, president of Warner Music
France, which distributes the song.
Coup de Boule, the French for
“head-butt”, was written by the three associates
of Plage Records, a small label specializing
in jingles and sound effects, the day after
France’s July 9 defeat in Berlin.
Zidane, one of the finest footballers
of his generation, was sent off for head-butting
Materazzi after exchanging comments with the
Italian defender in extra time with the score
at 1-1. Italy won the final after a penalty
The label’s founders, brothers
Emmanuel and Sebastien Lipszyc, and composer
Franck Lascombes, penned the catchy reggae-style
song and its chorus “Zidane, il a tape” (“Zidane,
the hit man”), as a cure for their post-defeat
Initially e-mailed to about 50
friends, the song quickly invaded the Web, with
French radio SkyRock putting it on its play-list
and ringtone sellers and music labels fighting
for the rights.
Warner Music France eventually
bought the song from the trio and two days after
its release on July 20, the tune was No. 2 in
the French charts, selling 17,000 copies.
More than 75,000 copies were sold
in stores in the last 10 days and the tune has
been downloaded more than 110,000 times.
“It’s all really thanks to the
Internet and the very speedy release of these
products. Five years ago this would not have
been possible,” Chassagne said.
Coup de Boule is already the best-selling
ringtone in the country and Warner is preparing
Spanish, Japanese and even Italian versions
of the song.
Zidane, who has now retired as
a player, was fined $6,000 and handed a three-match
ban by FIFA’s disciplinary committee.
The Italian defender, who admitted
insulting Zidane, was handed a two-match ban
and fined $4,000.