Nanaimo singer Elise Boulanger’s latest single is co-authored by random people she overheard while walking down the street.
On Oct. 11 Boulanger releases Cigarettes et rosé, a song inspired by snippets of out-of-context conversations and written when Boulanger was living in France in 2018.
“I began writing the song by piecing together bits of fragmented sentences to create phrases,” she explained. “But the song is mostly about the importance of trusting people and making friends with strangers and it also alludes to French history with all the mighty rulers that existed and influenced that country in one way or the other.”
Following the release, Boulanger will also be unveiling a lyric video, an instrumental version, a remix and a tutorial video to teach listeners to play the song on ukulele.
“We have a large community around here that plays ukulele so I think it’s a nice thing to share,” Boulanger said.
Among other instruments featured in Cigarettes et rosé are violin, cello and standup bass. Boulanger said she’s drawn to the sound of chamber music because of her classical training. She said she finds strings evoke feelings of yearning and angst.
“I was constantly being surrounded by orchestral music and listening to that and so it just became who I was,” she said. “But for me I love string music because it really pulls at your soul and it’s just such a striking sound.”
One of the lines in the song is “invite your friends” and Boulanger is inviting listeners who speak languages other than English and French to translate that line into their own languages. She’ll then provide the backing track for them to record themselves singing over with the goal of turning Cigarettes et rosé into a multilingual singalong. Click here for more information.
A performace of Cigarettes et rosé can be viewed here.