Last year, Renata Zeiguer released her very good debut album, Old Ghost, and today the Brooklyn-based musician has announced a follow-up tape/digital EP called Faraway Business. It’ll include two alternate takes of songs off her debut and two new covers, one of Willie Nelson and another of João Gilberto, the bossa nova music progenitor.
Today, Zeiguer is sharing her take on the latter’s “Chega de Saudade.” (Oddly enough, Azealia Banks also covered this track a few years ago.) Zeiguer’s rendition is balmy and smooth, pulled gently along by a chintzy drum machine. Here’s how she framed the cover:
Faraway Business is one of the English translations I came across while looking up a Portuguese lyric in the bossa song “Chega de Saudade.” It seemed like a fitting theme for this quartet of songs as the 2 originals are older and the 2 covers allude to love and loss and the distance that follows. I’m working on a new album at the moment but I wanted to share this in the interim.
Wanting to reconnect with my musical roots, I picked one of my favorite bossa novas from childhood, ‘Chega de Saudade.’ In Brazilian culture, saudade is understood to be a melancholic longing and nostalgia for something that has passed or may never pass at all. The English title is ‘No More Blues’, totally shortchanging the original, so I wanted to sing it in Portuguese, as I’ve always known the song. I love Joao Gilberto’s solo recordings and I tried to channel his tender yet frank intimacy. I was also psyched to use this beautiful little 1960s Ace Tone drum machine I recently acquired.
01 “Chega de Saudade” (João Gilberto Cover)
02 “Permanently Lonely” (Willie Nelson Cover)
Faraway Business is out 4/12 via Northern Spy Records. Pre-order it here.