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Tuesday, 25 June 2013 11:24

Charting the Music: Carla Bruni, 'Little French Songs'

Charting the Music: Carla Bruni, 'Little French Songs'
Written by Julie Greene
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For the first time since 2008, Carla Bruni, France's former first lady, is back with "Little French Songs," a sweet and charming take on classic French chansons.

At the place where French pop meets acoustic singer-songwriter, Carla Bruni creates endearing tunes that are lightly jazz but all around delightful.

88.1 KDHX Chart Position: #5 World for June 18, 2013.

Record label, release date and producer: Verve Records released "Little French Songs" on April 16, 2013; the album was produced by Bénédicte Schmitt.

Can be heard on: Folks of the World with Harriet Shanas and Memphis to Manchester with John Wendland.

RIYL: Cat Power, but with a jazz and French twist.

Hometown: Although Bruni was born in Turin, Italy, she spent the majority of her childhood in Paris, France. It's believed that at one point Bruni held dual citizenship in Italy and France; however, she has made contradictory statements regarding her Italian citizenship to the press so the public isn't sure.

Standout tracks: The record starts off with "J'arrive à toi" ("I Come to You"), a soft song that features Bruni's sensuous and smoky voice with a slow and dreamy guitar line. The song is then immediately followed by "Chez Keith et Anita" ("At Keith and Anita's Place"), a lighthearted and upbeat song about the imagined life of Keith Richards and his old girlfriend Anita Pallenberg when they lived in their French Riviera home in the early '70s. The album ends with "Le Pingouin" ("The Penguin"), a catchy and controversial track likely about François Hollande, who succeeded her husband Nicolas Sarkozy as president of France.

About the artist: By the late '90s, Carla Bruni was one of the world's highest paid and most photographed supermodels. Then, in 1997, she decided to abandon her modeling career to focus full-time on her music. Bruni released her first album in 2003, which debuted at No. 1 on the French Album Chart. Two albums later, Bruni is back with her newest release "Little French Songs."

Play it while: Enjoying a nice glass of red wine after a long day.

What the critics say: "'Little French Songs' is exactly what it says it is. Bruni's songwriting is deceptive in its limpid simplicity, full of reverie, wit, and the directness of her breathy voice, which is well traveled but contains delight at its heart." Thom Jurek, AllMusic.

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