Stromae – All about the musician: biography, success, songs

“If we talk about my influences, I have always admired the work of Jacques Brel ... It was his music that had a tremendous influence on me, and I am grateful to him for this ...”

Stromae — the story of the author Alors on danse

Paul Van Awer, better known as Stromae, is a popular Belgian musician, singer and songwriter! Back in 2009, the guy loudly declared himself to the whole world by releasing the legendary track "Alors on danse". The hit about "Alena" instantly became number one in 12 countries of the world, giving the rapper not only success, but also a contract with a major label!

Track cover
Track cover

In 2013 Stromae released his second studio album called Racine Carrée. The record was very popular: in France alone, it sold 2 million copies! In total, the album has sold 8.5 million copies worldwide!

The death of his father, problems with studies and world success - the person of Paul Van Aver certainly deserves attention! We offer to remember how his difficult path to glory began ...

Brief Biography

Paul as a child...
Paul as a child...

Paul Van Aver was born on March 12, 1985 in Brussels, Belgium. From early childhood, Paul was brought up by his mother alone, like his brothers and sisters. Unfortunately, his father, a successful architect, was killed in 1994 while visiting his family... It was a difficult time - the time of the genocide in Rwanda.

Paul did not pass the exam in the public education system, because of which he attended a Roman Catholic Jesuit school from the age of 16. As often happens, it is at this age that the guy and his friends form their first rap group. The guys were inspired by the work of Jacques Brel - a Belgian poet and bard ...

Later, Paul says:

“Despite the fact that I was raised as a Belgian, in my heart I did not always feel from Belgium…”


Curiously, our hero was not always "Stromae"! At the beginning of the 2000s, Paul announced himself under the stage name "Opmaestro". Later, he changed his name to a more familiar and familiar to many listeners, literally meaning "Maestro" (based on the French slang verlan).


At 18, Paul and his buddy JEDI formed a rap duo. The guys managed to release a joint track "Faut que t'arrête le Rap..." (and even shoot a video for it) before JEDI decides to leave to start a solo career...

Due to a lack of money, Paul had to work hard, in many ways to pay for his education at a private school. And only after entering the National Institute of Cinematography, the future idol of millions decides to fully and completely focus on his musical career. Soon the guy releases his debut EP called “Juste un cerveau, un flow, un fond et un mic…” The record attracted the attention of the general public, and already in 2008 the musician signed a 4-year contract!

Stromae (Stromae)
Stromae (Stromae)

Prior to that, Paul worked as a young trainee at the NRJ music radio station in Brussels. With the release of his debut album, the guy literally amazed all his colleagues! Especially, his composition "Alors on danse" impressed the music manager Vincent Verbelin! The man immediately saw a huge talent in the ward ... It was he who first put the track on the air. Soon, the song captivated thousands of listeners, among whom were famous people such as Anna Wintour, Jean-Claude Van Damme and even Nicolas Sarkozy himself - the then President of France! Within a few weeks, the dance composition became number one in sales in Belgium. And by May 2010, the track topped the charts in 12 countries around the world, including Germany, Italy and France! In the same year, Stromae, along with Kanye West and Gilber Forte, recorded a remix of the huge hit, and was also nominated for the MTV Europe Music Awards in the category "Best Dutch and Belgian Artist".

In addition, Paul Van Aver is one of the ten winners of the European Border Breakers Award 2011! His debut full-length album Cheese (which included the same "Alors on danse") was voted the best dance record of the year!

In one of his interviews, Paul spoke about his music and influences:

“I sang in a small band that did rap music. And then it dawned on me that instead of copying the French sound, I can focus on a more American style, but at the same time give it a more European motive ... After that, our sound acquired a hint of "Eurodance of the 90s"! We were embarrassed by this sound for a very long time ... But then we realized that now we have something to discover! This sound covers completely different roots - from house to salsa!

“If we talk about my influences, I have always admired the work of Jacques Brel ... It was his music that had a tremendous influence on me, and I am grateful to him for this ...”

In this interview, the artist also shared that he planned to collaborate with the rising rap group Swag + 5 and rapper T-Jay. However, the collaboration never took place... At the same time, Stromae did not stop admiring their work!


Speaking about Paul, one of the critics emphasized:

"His music combines '90s electro-synths and incredible beats with a laid-back delivery of hypnotic effect..."

Well, I don't even want to argue with that! Better to enjoy Stromae's work in person...

Stromae's Greatest Hits

Stromae's Greatest Hits
Stromae's Greatest Hits


Tous les memes

Alors On Dance


Ave Caesaria


Personal life…

Paul belongs to the category of those people who do not like to disclose the details of their personal lives ... It is only known that until 2012 the musician had a relationship with Miss Belgium 2005 Tatiana Silva Braga Tavares.

Later, Paul met Coralie Barbier, and soon they got married! In the fall of 2018, the couple had a son.

Stromae with Coralie Barbier
Stromae with Coralie Barbier

Interesting Facts…

Stromae (Stromae)
Stromae (Stromae)

The track "Papaoutai" was based on Paul's difficult relationship with his father. In music, Stromae also expressed his inner feelings regarding his death ... There are rumors that Pierre left his family and did not even see his son! But, according to Paul, this is not the case. The man always tried to visit relatives who remained in Brussels ...

Stromae's style is unique not only in music, but also in clothes! The artist himself calls his image "dandy swag". Paul just loves bright suits with incredible prints, spectacular butterflies, cardigans and knee socks!

At one of the performances, the lead singer of Coldplay, Chris Martin, decided to perform the then popular "Stromae Bâtard". And what was his surprise when the audience began to sing the words of the song in unison ...


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