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How to Rent a Room

by stef chura

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about

Stef Chura releases a yearning cover of Silver Jews' 'How To Rent a Room' in tribute to the much-missed David Berman who passed away earlier this year. A portion of proceeds from the cover will go to MusiCares, a charity providing financial, health and rehabilitation resources to music people in times of need. Read more on the good work they do here: www.grammy.com/musicares

While Chura has previously performed 'How To Rent a Room' solo in live sets, this version of The Natural Bridge opener came together shortly after Berman's passing this summer. "'How To Rent a Room' has always been one of those songs that I could never let go of," explains Chura. "Ever since the first time I heard it it’s always been one of my favorite songs and remains one that imprinted me as a young songwriter.

"Now, in light of his death, the lyrics take on a new and much sadder meaning. At the time they seemed conceptual, but the line “Now there’s a lot of things that I’m gonna miss, like the thunder down country and the way water drips” is now a haunting and deeply poetic rendering of everyday minutiae and the texture of our lives that we don’t appreciate on a daily basis. The song seems nostalgic for a life he was currently living, and how important it can feel to mean something to someone. Or at least that's my interpretation."

lyrics

No, I don't really want to die

I only want to die in your eyes
I'm still here below the chandelier

Where they always used to read us our rights

I want to wander through the night

As a figure in the distance even to my own eye
Have you ever rented a room?

Have you even ever rented a room?

Anchor lets you see the river move
But now that your evil dreams came true
There on your face
A row of teeth he'll come to replace

I know you laughed when I left
But you really only hurt yourself
When you see your curtains move in the wind
You can bet I'm betting against you again

'Cause I'm a man who has a wife who has a mother
Who married one but she loved another
You're a tower without the bells
You're a negative wishing well

I should've checked the stable door

For the name of the sire and dam
You were always at the dog track
With your brother and all his friends

Chalk lines around my body
Like the shoreline of a lake
Your laughter made me nervous
It made your body shake too hard

Now there's a lot of things that I'm gonna miss
Like thunder down country and the way water drips
When you're running for the door in the rain
Read the metro section
Read the metro section
Read the metro section
See my name

No, I didn't really want to die
I only want to die in your eyes
Grant me one last wish
Life should mean a lot less than this
Grant me one last wish
Life should mean a lot less than this

credits

released October 29, 2019
Stef Chura - acoustic guitar/vocals
Clara Salyer - lead guitar
Chad stocker - bass
Clancy Ryan - drums

license

all rights reserved

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