Jill Barber – Chansons


On her sixth album, Canadian chanteuse Jill Barber takes you to Paris with a layover in Montréal. Chansons is a collection of Barber’s favourite French and Québécois songs from the 40s, 50s, and 60s.  Clean arrangements and warm tones create a rich ambience that Barber brings to life with soulful delivery. You hang on every word and every note as the songs draw you into their world and the story unfolds before your eyes. Her French is so exquisite, it’s hard to believe she’s been speaking the language for less than five years. After her last tour, Barber enrolled in a French immersion course before recording Chansons. There’s a nice flow to the album even as the tempo, mood, and subject change from slow and melancholy (“Melancolie”) to breathy and sweeping (“La Javanaise”) to playful and bright (“Sous le Ciel de Paris”).  The latter was a hit in 1954 for Edith Piaf, who Barber cites as a major inspiration, and the closing song “Adieu Foulards” dates back to the 1700s.  Chansons is authentic, delightful, and leaves you wanting more. (Outside Music, jillbarber.com) Broose Tulloch

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