Cesaria Evora was a folk singer from Cape Verde, a West African island off of Senegal. Known as the “Barefoot Diva”, she performed concerts without shoes, a gesture of solidarity with poor women. Her songs reflect themes of love, sorrow, and history. Évora sang in Kriolu, a Creole language mixing Portuguese with the west African dialects of her enslaved ancestors. The husky smoothness and soulfulness of her voice brings forth warmth and beauty. I had the fortune of seeing Cesaria in concert many years ago. When I close my eyes, her music transports me to a place with swaying palms, colors, and warm wind.
This tune is about island nostalgia. The first verse translates:
There in the sky you are a star
Here everything shines
There in the sea you are a sandy seafloor
Here everything is wet
Watching this world outside
There’s only rocky cliffs and sea.
Inspired by the rhythm and lyrics, interiors with tropical influences come to mind. Some elements include:
*colorful punches of color that mirror the tropics: coral, turquoise, sunburst yellow
*fun patterns on fabrics like stripes and large floral prints
*natural materials such as large fronds,wicker, bamboo, and stone