Claude Fontaine is an American girl with a French name who never felt like she
fit in anywhere she happened to call home. One particular year she was awash in
a grey London fog that matched the fog and grey in her own too-recently broken
heart. While living right off Portobello Road, she stumbled into the record store
down the street and in a flash of luck—or fate—that particular record store turned
out to be Honest Jon’s, a long-lived spot for records collected from the furthest
edges of the world… “I wandered in one day and from the first moment I was
under a spell,” she says. “I was transfixed. I’d go in there daily and have them
play me every record in that store probably to the point of driving them
completely mad! But I had fallen in love …”
And because she loved those records so much, she decided to make a record of
her own—an album singing her own love songs (with Jane Birkin-style ye-ye
elan) that was itself a love song to classic reggae and Brazilian music, and an
album honoring that feeling of finding a home away from home.
Two years later, She finished her album in two potent sessions with Tony Chin,
(Dennis Brown, Althea and Donna, King Tubby) Airto Moreira ( Miles Davis,
Astrud Gilberto) and a murderer’s row of their connections—bassist Ronnie
McQueen of Steel Pulse and Ziggy Marley drummer Rock Deadrick, Now Again
Records guitarist Fabiano Do Nascimento, Sergio Mendes percussionist Gibi Dos
Santos and Flora Purim bassist Andre De Santanna. Side A is the reggae, five
songs about love gone wrong that sound like they came out of Jamaica in the
early 70s, and side B is the Bossa/Brazilian side. All together, it’s a valentine to
this special music that called out to her from the other side of the planet: “I hope
this record will transport people,” she says. “I wanted it to feel like those lost
records, like it got lost in the bottom bin of some world music store in London
because that’s how I felt when I walked in to that record store. I want it to be its

own world.”

North America