Carla Bruni takes on ABBA in acoustic Salon set

Whether she is singing in English or French, Bruni sees music as a direct line to the brain and the heart

Published October 13, 2017 6:58PM (EDT)

"All these songs from this album, they're so special," singer, songwriter and France's former first lady Carla Bruni said on "Salon Stage."

Bruni is preparing for the release later this month of her album of English-language cover songs, "French Touch," produced by David Foster. For "Salon Stage," she played "The Winner Takes It All" by ABBA and was accompanied by Taofik Farah on guitar and Johanne Mathaly on cello.

"Most of the songs were very nostalgic for me," Bruni said, "because those were the songs I was playing as a teenager, and when my parents got me a guitar — I must have been 10 or 11 years old. Before I wrote my own songs, I would play other people's songs.

"I actually know them by heart more than my own songs," she added.

The classic nature of the track list and the memories the songs evoke is nostalgic for Bruni, which she compared to the experience of smelling perfumes. "You know when you smell a perfume, it brings you right back to the time you were wearing that perfume or someone else was wearing or maybe your parents," she said.

Bruni sees songs as much the same. "They hit into your memories and they bring you back like souvenirs." Songs are like time capsules with a direct line to "your brain and into your heart."

While the songs Bruni chose are in English, it was a deliberate choice, as she feels the covers are universal. "There are songs where you don't even need to hear the lyrics to get them, because they have something that is above the lyrics with the melody and harmony," Bruni said. "These songs, they belong to everyone."

Watch the full "Salon Stage" performance on Facebook.

Tune into Salon's live shows, "Salon Talks" and "Salon Stage," daily at noon ET / 9 a.m. PT and 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT, streaming live on Salon and on Facebook.

By Rachel Leah

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Abba Carla Bruni French Touch Music Original Video Salon Stage Singer Songwriter