Jenny Lewis & Serengeti – “Unblu”

Jenny Lewis & Serengeti – “Unblu”

Chicago rapper Serengeti, aka Dave Cohn, occasionally finds his way into collaborations with indie rock icons. In 2012 he launched launched s / s / s, later renamed Sisyphus, with Sufjan Stevens and Son Lux. Now he’s got a new song with Jenny Lewis.

The smudged-lens swoon “Unblu” was produced by Lewis and Andrew Broder, aka Fog. Lewis’ dreamy, drowsy vocals are threaded throughout, but it’s primarily a showcase for Serengeti — a true team effort between two unlikely collaborators. In a note accompanying the release, they explain the genesis of this project and hint at more songs on the way:

Jenny met Dave down a long hallway in a former Communist Media Center in East Berlin during the People Festival of 2018. Dave asked Jenny to sing on a song about Tom Selleck passing on the part of Indiana Jones. Can you imagine a world where Tom Selleck is Indiana Jones?

A fast friendship was born as they skulked about, cracking jokes and chatting about their mutual love for boxing.

Jenny threw a show for Dave at Dino’s in East Nashville when they returned from Europe. The bartenders said it was the best show they ever had. Jenny was among the 9 fans that attended and danced their asses off.

To cap the torrid evening, Dave said “J, I need 7 tracks! Just piano or guitar or whatever!” Jenny inquired if one would do?

Then the world shut down and Jenny & Dave hunkered down in Los Angeles & Chicago, respectively. Jenny smoked weed every day and Dave stayed totally sober.

The result is five songs made on Jenny’s iPhone, for Dave. Beats, bass, drums, digital tanpura & topline, sent via text, ripe for Dave’s poetry. To accompany the music, Jenny made videos on her phone during the witching hours, editing while under the covers.

Then Jenny texted the tracks to another People alumnus – Andrew Broder in Minneapolis — who co-produced and mixed the songs, taking them from GarageBand phone music to music that gently thumps you. Music to dance around your living room in a Day-Glo bathing suit to. Music to go bananas to while watching the news & Forensic Files on mute.

Thank you for reading this.

Enjoy, Jenny Lewis & Serengeti

P.S. It’s almost Christmas!

Did you catch the mention of “five songs”? No word yet as to what that’s all about. In the meantime, check out the Lewis-directed “Unblu” video below.

“Unblu” is out now on Lewis’ label Loves Way.

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