Les Concerts en Chine

Les Concerts en Chine (pronounced [le kɔ̃sɛʁ ɑ̃ ʃin], English title: The Concerts in China) is a live album by Jean-Michel Jarre, recorded in 1981 and released in 1982 on Disques Dreyfus. It was recorded during Jarre's Concerts in China tour of Autumn 1981, which consisted of five Beijing and Shanghai concerts in China; this was the first time a Western pop artist performed in China after the Cultural Revolution.

Les Concerts en Chine
Live album by
RecordedOctober 1981
GenreElectronic, ambient, world
LabelDisques Dreyfus
ProducerJean-Michel Jarre
Jean-Michel Jarre chronology
Les Chants Magnétiques
Les Concerts en Chine
Musique pour Supermarché
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic [1]

The album is a balance of previously released tracks by Jarre, new compositions inspired by Chinese culture, and one rearranged traditional Chinese track Fishing Junks at Sunset ("Jonques de pêcheurs au crépuscule"). The album consists mainly of live material, plus ambient sound recordings and one new studio track "Souvenir of China". Other new compositions recorded live include "Nuit à Shanghai", "Harpe Laser", "Arpégiateur" and "Orient Express". "Jonques de pêcheurs au crépuscule" ("Fishing Junks at Sunset") is a new arrangement of a very old traditional Chinese song known as the "Fisherman's Chant at Dusk", which was performed and recorded with The Peking Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra and is often wrongly attributed as being composed by Jean Michel Jarre, misled by the album inlay.

The album was originally released as a double-disc LP, then as a double-disc CD. There was also a CD release in two separate volumes, with the cover color changed to blue (Vol. 1) and yellow (Vol. 2). In 1997, a one-disc remastered CD was released, made possible by reducing the total running time to 78:17 by reducing the gaps and audience noise between tracks. The remastering was done by Scott Hull at Masterdisk to the 96 kHz, 24 bit standard.[2]

One of the album's original tracks – "Arpégiateur" – was used in the soundtrack of the film 9½ Weeks as well as in several mid-1980s episodes of the American soap opera Santa Barbara. Opening track "The Overture" is the first movement of "Magnetic Fields Part 1" slowed down.

The album reached #6 in the UK charts[3] and #1 in Portugal.

Track listing

First edition (1982)

Side one
1."L'Ouverture" (The Overture)4:47
2."Arpégiateur" (Arpegiator)6:54
3."Equinoxe 4"7:49
Side two
1."Jonques de pêcheurs au crépuscule" (Fishing Junks at Sunset)9:38
2."L'Orchestre sous la pluie" (Band in the Rain)1:29
3."Equinoxe 7"9:54
Side three
1."Orient Express"4:22
2."Les Chants Magnétiques 1" (Magnetic Fields 1)0:21
3."Les Chants Magnétiques 3" (Magnetic Fields 3)3:48
4."Les Chants Magnétiques 4" (Magnetic Fields 4)6:49
5."Harpe Laser" (Laser Harp)3:35
Side four
1."Nuit à Shanghai" (Night in Shanghai)7:02
2."La dernière rumba" (The Last Rhumba)2:07
3."Les Chants Magnétiques 2" (Magnetic Fields 2)6:30
4."Souvenir de Chine" (Souvenir of China)3:54

Second edition (1997 remaster)

  1. "The Overture" – 4:47
  2. "Arpegiator" – 6:51
  3. "Equinoxe 4" – 7:39
  4. "Fishing Junks at Sunset" – 9:35
  5. "Band in the Rain" – 1:23
  6. "Equinoxe 7" – 9:52
  7. "Orient Express" – 4:21
  8. "Magnetic Fields 1" – 0:28
  9. "Magnetic Fields 3" – 3:48
  10. "Magnetic Fields 4" – 6:43
  11. "Laser Harp" – 3:26
  12. "Night in Shanghai" – 7:02
  13. "The Last Rumba" – 2:03
  14. "Magnetic Fields 2" – 6:19
  15. "Souvenir of China" – 4:00


Additional personnel

  • Pierre Mourey – musical instrument coordinator
  • Peking Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra – Chinese orchestra on "Fishing Junks at Sunset"
  • Huang Feili – orchestra conductor on "Fishing Junks at Sunset"
  • Mrs. Li Meng, Mr. Wang Zhi – collaborating artists (possibly playing guzhengs) on "Fishing Junks at Sunset"


Region CertificationCertified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[4] Silver 60,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone


  1. https://www.allmusic.com/album/r107181
  2. "Jean Michel Jarre - The Concerts In China (CD, Album) at Discogs".
  3. "Connolly Company".
  4. "British album certifications – JMJ – Les Concerts in Chine". British Phonographic Industry. Select albums in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Type Les Concerts in Chine in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.

Further reading

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