I’d ev­er heard of Cœur de pi­rate un­til she popped up on my ra­dio a few weeks ago. She’s from Québéc and I think the name best trans­lates as “Pirate’s Heart”, but she’s bilin­gual and at one point re­ferred to her­self as “Her Pi­rate Heart”, which is cool too. Any­how, the singing is in French and is very beau­ti­ful, and al­so an oa­sis of peace in among all the loud male mu­sic I’ve been host­ing here re­cent­ly.

Cœur de pirate

I don’t know much more about this pi­rat­ic per­former than what you can read on her Web site or on Wikipedia. The songs are soft, sparse­ly ar­ranged, and if I had to choose one ad­jec­tive to de­scribe them it’d be “feminine”. Al­so, the pi­ano lines are ca­ress­ing­ly love­ly. But if you come here seek­ing gui­tar so­los or a back­beat you will be dis­ap­point­ed.

Her voice is unique, con­ven­tion­al­ly beau­ti­ful and al­so unashamed­ly nasal; I love it. I’m no judge of the fin­er points of French ac­cents but I thought I could rec­og­nize Québécois French, and that’s not what I think I’m hear­ing. Al­so, when she speaks English her ac­cent is com­plete­ly ab­sent to my ear, which means Mid­dle Cana­di­an.

Som­nam­bule means “sleepwalking”, and the lyrics here are lus­cious­ly, lyri­cal­ly ro­man­tic:

Les doutes d'une incrédule se per­dent dans la nu­it
Et tout s'est décidé
Je ne vis que d'idéaux, de mots cassés
Je tente d'être complétée
D'amour et d'inconnu

This is part of the Song of the Day se­ries (back­ground).

Links · Spo­ti­fy playlist. This tune on iTunes, Ama­zon, Spo­ti­fy. Now, Som­nam­bule is my fa­vorite among the songs by Ms Pi­rate that I’ve heard so far, and here’s a nice live take in a church. But my fa­vorite on­line live per­for­mance is a totally-live two-song set: Place de la Republique & Adieu, beau­ti­ful­ly cap­tured in an emp­ty room on a beat-up old pi­ano, some­where in Toron­to. The sec­ond song cuts deep­er.

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June 06, 2018
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