I saw the Rolling Stones when they sang at the Paris Olympia in 1965. They stayed in a hotel called “Hotel de Paris” which was a block on the Boulevard de la Madeleine, rue de Seze and rue Godot de Mauroy (where now stands the Relais Madeleine that I manage..!) They stayed always very close to their venue. This hotel was practical for the singers who sang at the Olympia for several good reasons : it was less than one hundred metres from the Olympia and it had several side and back entrances apart from the main one which enabled them to “run away” from the fans that were like me posted around for autographs…! But we had some sort of organization between us and we watched all exits.. on this occasion I remember the Stones came out from the back entrance and litterally ran across the boulevard to an optician shop called Lissac I managed to get their signatures before the running started and also just before the shop… They then closed the shop…
In front of Hôtel de Paris (not anymore a hotel) on the boulevard de la Madeleine Denny Laine hums his song Boulevard de la Madeleine. A few minutes later we followed Denny with the other Moodies to the Madeleine Church a few paces away. There was taken by the Salut les Copains photographer the photograph that is on the french EP Boulevard de la Madeleine that is shown on this blog.
P J PROBY‘s autograph Paris Olympia stage door 28 rue Caumartin near Madeleine
On this occasion James Brown had a show at the Olympia (I believe it was a one night stand) and I had the information through a friend that he was to stay at the George V Hotel. On the night of the concert I was waiting for him to arrive in front of the hotel George V and it was well after 9pm the time due for the concert to start. No one else was waiting and if I remember I must have enquired with the hotel as to whether James Brown had arrived or not. And often the answer yes or no was exactly the opposite to the truth so that it discouraged us to wait for the artists.. So in this case I was not so sure if he had or not arrived and thought that probably that by this time he would be already on stage. Nevertheless after a while a limousine stopped in front of the hotel ( a common occurence in front of the George V..) and when the car door opened there was James Brown stepping out… I saluted him welcome to Paris and he took me by the arm inside the lobby. There without looking round he just sat in an armchair, asked me to do the same : and there I was chatting to a very friendly man who was supposed to be singing on stage at that very moment. He then went to get ready and by the time he arrived on stage I think the audience were in a state of excitement, exasperation and dispair… A very nice memory of an artist who took time to know his fans..