On “Mi Negrita”, Devendra Banhart dials down the quirkiness in exchange for a little romance. Sung entirely in Spanish, this straightforward acoustic charmer that woos as it rocks gently side to side.
Banhart claims the track was inspired by “envisioning himself in an oversized suit, slightly sweaty” while on the set of Super Sabado Sensacional, a Venezuelan variety show that he regularly watched as a child growing up in Caracas. Stream it below.
Regarding singing in Spanish, he had this to say: “In Spanish, I can have a lot more flexibility. I have a limited vocabulary—in English and in Spanish—but with Spanish I can get more into the sound of the words, I can have more fun with it. I can even get more autobiographical in Spanish. I feel comfortable revealing more, expressing something sincere about trauma or pain, which is not really a space I’m comfortable occupying. I can take things further in Spanish.”
“Mi Negrita” is off Banhart’s forthcoming album, Mala, due out March 12th via Nonesuch Records. Listen to its other tracks, “Never Seen Such Good Things”, “Cristobal Risquez” and “FÃ¼r Hildegard von Bingen”. Pre-order it here.