I'm always asked if the songs that I write are therapeutic, and my answer is a quick no. In fact, it could be argued that they exacerbate my neurosis.
I've never really suffered complete and utter writer's block, really. I equate it with sex: in the beginning of my career, I was writing five songs a week; now, I occasionally write a song. But it's an exciting moment when it happens!
Doomsday is quite within our reach, if we will only stretch for it.
Geoff Muldaur was and is one of my musical heroes. When I listen to him sing and play, I can hear the coal mine, the cotton field, and last, but certainly foremost, the boy's boarding school.
You always want to break away from your parents, and you always think, 'I'm never going to be like that guy.' What I've discovered is you kind of wind up becoming your parents, which is also a cliche in itself. My father, despite the fact that he's been dead for over 25 years, he's been a huge influ
I had a hip replacement a couple of years ago. I have a song about that. And why wouldn't you? It strikes me that that was a huge event. It's kind of funny and horrible and interesting, so why wouldn't one write about that?
I hated the idea that I would be like my father. Which is one of the reasons I decided I didn't want to be a writer and wanted to be an actor instead. I wanted to go in a total different direction. But, of course, I ended up being a writer anyway.
Los Angeles, the sun shines a lot, and it's blue, and there's palm trees; it's a bit like Sydney, I guess, but the underbelly is a vicious, mean, cruel, awful place.
If you're 28 and singing about being over the hill, you're pretending. When you're 67 and singing about it, you know what you're talking about.
I studied acting and there's certainly an element of performance. I think that the songs are in many ways written to be performed. I think about what it's going to be like to sing them on stage rather than what it's going to be like to have someone at home listening to them on a CD. I guess in that
The big things in the average person's life are the romances that they have - and then the destruction and loss of them. Parents, siblings, children, the death of parents, family tension... these are monumental things. They struck me as being interesting to write about. I didn't have a very exotic l
I don't write about anything I don't want to write about. I like to think I could write about anything pretty much that I chose to. I have been asked to write songs about specific things, and I've always been able to come up with the goods.
I guess I can be surprised I'm alive. I'm taking a little better care of myself than when I was a young person. My father died when he was 63. My mother made it to 74. My grandparents, God, they were dropping like flies.
I have travelled and been pretty much a one man operation for most of my career, and I think it'll continue to be that way.
I love failure. It's stuff that I'm thinking about all the time in my life, so it would make sense to me anyway to write about it.
I know that people don't listen to music much in the way when they'll put on a CD, sit down, have a drink or go on a car journey. People pick and choose and just listen to tracks. But when I make a record, I try to think about it as a 50 minute musical journey, so the mood is very important, as is t
I wasn't in a lot of rock and roll bands. I was in jug bands and things when I was in school.
When you make a record, you listen to it literally hundreds of times. When it's done and you can't do anything else, I never listen to my records.
I don't claim to be a particularly good father. I'm flawed, let's say. I've certainly been affected by the experience of having kids... trying to be a father, at least. It's an amazing process. It's like songwriting: it's a complete mystery to me. I don't understand it - but I've certainly written a
If I had five minutes to live, I don't think I'd be bothered singing a song. I'd be dead, so it won't really matter. I'd have a glass of wine and a cigarette.
After a war, after a concentration camp, I find it's not too difficult to be happy.
When you start performing, you realize that you have to separate yourself from the pack. So I would never wear bell-bottoms, which everybody else was wearing. I had short hair - and to see a 21-year-old guy walk onstage without longish hair was, in itself, weird. Every entertainer needs a shtick.
Why kill good people just to get a bad man?
I think I'm great. I mean, I might as well come out and say it. Like most people, I have an ego and I'm in show business, so you have to have kind of a healthy, conflagrated ego to a degree. On the other hand, I'm consumed, like a lot of people, with self-doubt and loathing and guilt.
When a parent dies, the whole house of cards comes down.
My feeling is that, and I've been writing about my family over the years, although it might make them feel uncomfortable, people generally like to be written about. If I've written a song about the family, they enjoy being mentioned in the songs. Nobody's confronted me and said 'don't write any song
I think I'm the oldest new Bob Dylan around. I predate Bruce Springsteen, Steve Forbat and John Prine. I was probably the first of the new Bob Dylans.
When my mother died, and when my father died, it's big. Our parents are giants; they're titans of our lives, so of course it's going to be a big deal.
I wasn't in a lot of rock and roll bands. I was in jug bands and things when I was in school. Loudon Wainwright II
When you have a song on the radio your career and your life changes maybe for the better and maybe for the not so good depending on how it's going that day.