Don’t Forget the Songs-365: Mach Dos: Day 250
Wednesday Sept 19, 2012

“Cherokee [Nicolas Jaar’s remix]”
Cat Power


“♫ Never knew
love like this /
the wind, moon,
the earth, the sky/
sky so high

I just can’t quit you Chan Marshall! The season of Cat Power’s Sun continues rising with Nicolas Jaar’s heavenly remix of “Cherokee.” All though I still adore the original Sun version, the reason I’m writing about this is that you won’t be hearing Jaar’s remix at your local Hollywood club. This isn’t your older brother’s remix; Jaar strips “Cherokee” of its funky beats and replaces them with cloud like aura that makes it sounds like Chan’s voice is floating through the air.

Jaar actually excises Chan’s guitar in favor of more ethereal sound. Ironically enough, Marshall actually made a conscious effort to lose her touchstone guitar riffs for something more electronically foreign, as she said. “The thing that I’d always relied on was the tempo of playing a guitar. Playing the guitar, you kind of lock into a rhythm and a groove, and then it relaxes me to make up lyrics and sing. So this time, it was a little different. I had to press these strange synthesizers and roll it, roll it, record it, record it, until I did something that I liked.”

So how the lack of guitars and the use of more synths did influenced the sound of Sun? Chan discusses this with Michael Hogan when she said, “And then I went back and I made a promise not to touch a guitar or a piano, and the only other things at The Boat were the synthesizers, keyboards and drum sets. And that’s where “Sun” came from. That’s where the sound came from.”

The “Cherokee” sound from Sun is 21st Century Cat Power. It may take some vintage more analog Marshall fans to get past all the synths but what Jaar’s remix proves when he stripped down “Cherokee,” he showcases the eternal au natural vocalized poetry of Cat Power. Chan told Pitchfork about how the theme of Nature is prevalent in “Cherokee” when she explained, “Nobody ever talked about the clouds, how every cloud looks different: low clouds, high clouds, fast clouds, slow clouds, blue sky, dark blue, light blue, planets, moons. No one ever talks about that. As a kid I knew the grass and I knew the wind. I knew that. That was very clear.

What’s clear is the stripped down delicacy of Jaar’s out of this stratosphere remix of “Cherokee.” This new version of “Cherokee” makes me want to take my car and drive down the 101 with the windows open while Cat Power serenades me as the clouds all surrounding me up above. Press play as Chan Marshall invites you to let go as you dive inside this interstellar mix of “Cherokee.” Cat Power will take you away into the uplifting skies with another beauty of her of lyrical garden of heavenly delights.

For those of you still in love with the original, here’s the original Sun version and new Sci-Fi Zombie Apocalypse themed video of “Cherokee” directed by Chan Marshall.