Yael Naim

biography

Yael Naim and David Donatien

Their differing roots and their multiple passion for music unites them: YAEL NAIM releases a second, four-handed album together with DAVID DONATIEN, as a new collection of graceful songs.

After the worldwide success of the feel-good album, released in 2007, YAEL NAIM unveils her second album today « She Was a Boy ». Closeted in a Parisian apartment for two years, YAEL NAIM and DAVID DONATIEN perfected Yael’s songs in Hebrew and English, which culminated in a commercial and artistic success (Victoire de la Musique 2008, for the Album of the Year World Music category). Following the use of the song « New Soul » in a promotional advert for Apple, it entered the Top Ten on the US sales chart. Since then however, the Parisian flat has been turned into a studio; more space, but the same passion to make an album at their own pace. Having made great use of these past three years by playing anywhere where there was even a slight echo of their music, and to taste the pleasures of the fringe (a tribute to Joni Mitchel, on the Beatle’s album “Let it Be”, a collaboration with the National Jazz Orchestra and a representation at the Pleyel concert hall), YAEL NAIM has given her all to this process that she herself qualifies as a particularly intimate way to create songs. At the same time, DAVID DONATIEN involved musicians such as Thomas Bloch, Lionel, Stéphane Belmondo and the pianist Éric Legini. Furthermore, the French artist Tété was invited to the banquet table of sessions, alongside the “eternally- young” tender singer, Spleen , Jacques Daoud and Yoed Nir (cellist), as well as the usual friendly crew of musicians that regularly join them on stage.* YAEL offers us a mix of gentle as well as heartbreaking songs, crossed with those that don’t resemble theirs like for example the light tempo of “Come Home”, or of their dreams in “My Dreams” and their certainties, using the richness of Balkan chords as in “She Was A Boy”, in which Yael, still just a child, encounters a young woman who is not like the others and not of their opinion. “I Try Hard” uses a mix of the artist’s words and that of the woman. At times, the album transports us to the world of cinema, “My Dreams”, and its underwater chorus’ are worthy of an Esther Williams aquatic ballet and she doesn’t hesitate to dive into her innermost soul: it’s in a bluesy, lamenting fashion that “Never Change” presents not the most flattering of self portraits. We salute the jolting parade of New Orleans orchestras in “Mystical Love” that Lee Dorsey himself would have been proud of. The coming together of India and the West, the melismatic singing in “Man From Another Woman”, which ends by smiling at the young woman (lost in translation and lost in love) in “The Game is Over”. Finally, on “Today” and “If I Lost the Best Thing”, Yael and David haven’t hesitated in accompanying their singing with a simple violin or solo guitar in order to better preserve the intimacy of the songs. Strength and fragility, a trek around the world (jazz, variety pop, classical), and a soul-searching journey of self, here the voices and melodies vibrate within the compositions of Yael, and so does the listener.

*Julien Feltin : electric guitar / Xavier Tribolet : keyboards/ Daniel Romeo : double bass