Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Stef Chura Covers Silver Jews

Photo by Danielle Dabney
Stef Chura's Midnight is a strong contender for best album of 2019 and she's just released a cover of Silver Jews's classic "How to Rent a Room." Chura has been performing the song at live shows for a while, but after the untimely passing of David Berman earlier this year she chose to release a formal version of the song. "'How To Rent a Room' has always been one of those songs that I could never let go of," explains Chura. "Ever since the first time I heard it it’s always been one of my favorite songs and remains one that imprinted me as a young songwriter. Now, in light of his death, the lyrics take on a new and much sadder meaning. At the time they seemed conceptual, but the line 'Now there’s a lot of things that I’m gonna miss, like the thunder down country and the way water drips' is now a haunting and deeply poetic rendering of everyday minutiae and the texture of our lives that we don’t appreciate on a daily basis. The song seems nostalgic for a life he was currently living, and how important it can feel to mean something to someone. Or at least that's my interpretation." Despite the original being released in 1996, somehow Chura's cover sounds even more 90's. Not that either is specifically tied to the sound associated with that decade. Both are rambling songs that aren't quite folk. Folk-adjacent, at best. 

You can listen to Stef Chura's take on "How to Rent a Room" below. A portion of the proceeds of the song will be donated to MusiCares, a charity providing financial, health and rehabilitation resources to music people in times of need. You can get a copy here. For more on Stef Chura, check out her website. Current tour dates are below the song.

Thur. Oct. 31 - Paris, FR @ Supersonic (free show)
Sat. Nov. 2 - London, UK @ Mirrors Festival
Sun. Nov. 3 - Newcastle, UK @ Bobiks
Mon. Nov. 4 - Glasgow, UK @ The Hug & Pint
Tue. Nov. 5 | Manchester, UK @ Gullivers
Wed. Nov. 6 - Brighton, UK @ The Hope & Ruin
Thu. Nov. 7 - Bristol, UK @ Hy Brasil (free show)
Fri. Nov. 15 - Detroit, MI @ Magic Stick

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