Not very well. You’ve got to go to guitar school, but as soon as you start working with a keyboard or a drum set, you realize this isn’t like working with strings. It is more like working with sounds. It might help if someone suggested music theory, but it’s too late.
Did you know you could do anything with computers? Absolutely. I’m sure you’ve heard about the first computer and how it was really great. But then a few years later, a new one was released. And you can’t do a keyboard with that because it is just not practical.
“We are a society of individuals and only individuals have the right to define, to organize, and to influence society.” —Ronald Reagan, 1981
Who were your heroes growing up? Those were all my heroes. They are: Johnny Cash, the Velvet Underground, the Who, Frank Sinatra, Miles Davis, Frank Zappa, the Grateful Dead, James Brown, and John Lennon.
What are your favorite artists that have influenced your music? [I] wouldn’t say I particularly like them — I like rock and roll; I just like music that has more lyrics than other things I like. I still like rock and roll but I haven’t really done guitar with it for years.
What do you think people listen to while listening to your music? Not a lot of things. I usually listen to music when I’m relaxing and listening to my own music. But I do a lot listening to what else I’m doing, and I’m not surprised to hear how many people are listening to this, so I guess that’s why I’m in so many studios. But at this point I don’t really pay attention.
Do you think the current state of music is a reflection of the current political climate? Well, people listen to my music to be able to say, “Wow. What I wrote is really good.” I’m sure when I started, that was true. But people listening now don’t care. And they wouldn’t listen to my music if they had the slightest interest in who I was, which is totally fine. But they don’t pay attention to that.
Do you listen to popular music any more? No, I think music just doesn’t have the same resonance because there are so many genres.
Do you believe in music and music criticism in general? Not a lot, no. I mean people tell me they really enjoy it but I just don’t pay
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