Every song asks to be sung in a different way.
I always felt, as a listener at a show, that when there was too much banter between the artist and the audience that it detracted from the show. I more enjoyed shows where the guys came out and they just played.
I am very self-critical, but that’s a good thing because it keeps me growing as a human being and as a musician.
I can’t get excited by my own music. It’s impossible.
I don’t like myself, and I don’t like to be looked at.
I don’t really think of myself as a folk singer.
I feel calm when I’m on my own.
I have a strong sense of self, but that’s not a negative thing.
I need space between me and the audience – and the more space the better.
I probably wouldn’t be a songwriter if I didn’t grow up the way I did. It was difficult and it was at times very scary to grow up in a household so unsettled and at times very violent. But, it also, I guess it earned me a sort of wisdom at a young age that’s served me well.
I want to be in control of my own destiny.
I want to write music that will outlive me.
I was really lost for a while in my teens. I was angry. But when I found music – Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell – it was a new discovery. It was a door to this other world where I wanted to be.
I’d much rather be playing songs than talking to people.
I’m a private person.
I’m a very emotional person.
I’m very uncomfortable in my own skin.
In order to get a note out, I have to dig deep, and I mean that on an emotional level. To physically sing, I have to get somewhere deep before I can do it.
It bugs me that people think my songs are personal because it means I have to explain myself all the time.
It’s so easy to get caught up in your own experiences. They can seem so important. But there are billions and billions of other experiences going on.
My backstory is so tedious.
My voice sucks. I don’t like the tone.
Social situations, for me – it’s very natural for me to be an observer. That’s where I’m most comfortable. I observe things.
The label doesn’t do anything but put your record in the store, that’s all they do. And tell you, you don’t have a single… and tell you, it’s not gonna sell… that’s what the label does.
The thing I love about music is that you can take things that are painful, deep things that hurt you, and you can turn them into something beautiful.
There’s a real sense of desperation when you grow up in poverty.
We all have that inner voice that is wise, even if we don’t always follow it. It’s that voice I’m trying to listen to.
Well… you know, I love motorcycles. They’re just beautiful, and there’s a certain craftsmanship in older bikes, older Triumphs or BSAs or Norton. I’m just very attracted to it.
When I pick up the guitar, it’s a melody, and that’s what drives the lyrics. It’s bits and pieces of truth, but it is storytelling.
When I think of folk music, I think of topical songs. And I don’t write topical songs.
Writing songs is not something I wanted to share with people for a long time. It was precious to me. I didn’t want someone to crush it. I waited until I felt strong enough to take the criticism.
You can make bad choices and find yourself in a downward spiral or you can find something that gets you out of it.
You have to believe in yourself before anybody else believes in you.