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Twelve years have passed since Béatrice Martin appeared in our lives as Cœur de pirate. Over this period of time, the singer-songwriter and pianist has sold over a million albums and earned several million fans who listen to her songs on repeat via streaming platforms. The mark she has made in the French-speaking pop world is indelible and undeniable.
Looking back to her beginnings, it’s safe to say that when Béatrice Martin began performing alone at the piano, she rose like a tidal wave that swept over Montreal’s stagnating indie-rock scene. Bolstered by the success of her early concerts, she released a self-titled debut in September 2008, which went platinum in Canada and diamond in France. Bypassing the usual channels, she almost immediately made a name for herself on the other side of the Atlantic, a feat many famed Quebec artists took years to achieve. Parting with the piano in favour of a more playful pop sound, she followed up with Blonde (2011), a sophomore release that was also certified platinum in Canada and in France. In 2012, the album earned Béatrice the Félix awards for Pop Album of the Year and Female Performer of the Year. Her third album, a bilingual efforttitled Roses (2015), reached gold status in Canada and in France, with over 200 000 copies sold worldwide. In 2016, Cœur de pirate earned the Félix award for English-Language Album of the Year, while also making her mark in English-speaking Canada with a JUNO nomination for the Fan Choice award.
With a trail of sold-out shows to her credit in Canada, France, the United States, Mexico, England, Spain, Italy, and Germany, Cœur de pirate has established herself as a unifying voice and a safe bet on stages. Thus, she has been welcomed by the greatest Canadian and European festivals over the past decade, including Les Francofolies de la Rochelle, the Festival d’été de Québec, and Osheaga, to name only a few.
After several years spent touring the world, a sense of creative urgency set in. As a result, En cas de tempête, ce jardin sera fermé was released in 2018, just in time to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Cœur de pirate’s career. In addition to touring internationally in support of the record, Cœur de pirate kicked off the 2019 edition of Les Francos de Montréal before hundreds of fans at Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier, giving a standout show that marked the realization of a dream.
As she continued to honour her busy touring schedule, she earned many stellar accolades along the way, including the Singer-Songwriter of the Year and Female Performer of the Year awards at the SOCAN and ADISQ ceremonies, respectively. In the public eye every week as a coach on Quebec’s reality talent show La Voix and a judge on France’s singing competition Nouvelle Star, Cœur de pirate increasingly aspires to use her platform to take stands on political and social issues. Her feminist stance is unequivocal in the song “T’es belle,” and the music video for the song—Béatrice’s debut as a director—delivers a frank blow to everyday sexism, clearly embracing the paradigm shift of our times.
In the midst of what was already an eventful year, Cœur de pirate shook things up even more in 2020 when she took the reins of the record label that saw her rise to fame, renaming the company Bravo musique. In this brand-new role, Béatrice takes pride in spotlighting the talent that surrounds her, in all its wonderful complexity. She is also invested in mentoring young and emerging artists.
In the spring of 2021, Cœur de pirate returned to her first love with Perséides, an album of new instrumental pieces where the piano reigns supreme. She is currently working on another full-length album, which is set to be released before the end of 2021.