Jill Barber: Summer Nights in Montréal feat. Yann Perreau
A love letter to Montreal as sweet and light as a July gelato.
By Kerry Doole
Jill Barber: Summer Nights in Montréal feat. Yann Perreau (Outside Music). BC-based pop-jazz chanteuse Jill Barber released a new French album, Entre nous, last Friday, preceded by this single, available in both English and French versions.
In a label press release, Barber explains that "on Summer Nights in Montréal, I savour the memory of a past encounter: a sweet recollection of a steamy evening in Montréal. But more than that, it is a love letter to Montréal, to the intoxicating effect it has on me, and the “joie de vivre” that I feel each time I’m there. I loved the idea of this song being a duet, a back and forth “dance” between a woman and a man, so I approached Yann Perreau about singing it with me. He is a coup-de-coeur of mine and I am thrilled to have him as my duet partner on this song.“
The song begins with the pair trading lines, then joining together on sweet harmonies. The result is a frothy and light confection, as refreshing as gelato in July.
Barber's love affair with Montreal is mutual, as she is one of the few Anglo-Canadian artists to cross over successfully in la belle province. Over a decade ago, at a sold-out show at the Montreal Jazz Festival, she surprised her audience with a French translation performance of one of her songs that earned a standing ovation. That reaction prompted a debut French album, Chansons (2011), which became a hit in Quebec and fared well internationally.
Entre nous is her first collection of original French songs, written with Francophone collaborator Maia Davies and produced by Montreal born- NYC based Gus Van Go. Barber's success in the francophone world is no great surprise, for the sweet purity of her voice evokes classic French chanson pop. That style is cited as an inspiration for the new album, one we expect to do well for her.
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