Nothing better.
Yeah. I was thinking about that listening to your record earlier today. It was that song "I Can Make You Smile." There seems to be a little of personal vulnerability in that song. I really thought‚ "Wow that takes a lot of balls to be that honest about it." But we all have that‚ and a lot of us are probably too scared to say it in that way.
I've been friends with bare-bones honesty for years now. I remember being a kid and just the shock element alone fascinated me for years‚ that you could sit at the family dinner table and just a personal truth could be the most shocking thing you could lay on the world. That always fascinated me. I was like‚ "Really‚ I could just say something I felt or thought about and the whole table will freak out?" [Laughs] Without mentioning some of those truths‚ I'm sure everyone has some shocking truths for the world.
I was just gonna ask you‚ do you have a specific example you'd like to share? [laughs]
NO. [Laughter] But when you're young‚ and you're in sort of a conservative family‚ it could just be the idea of taking mushrooms‚ or something as simple as that. Or‚ I have a sex drive. [laughter]
"I'm horny-all the time. Did you guys know that about me?"
When you're young‚ especially for some of us‚ the stuff you did last night is enough to make the family dinner table collapse under the weight of it. And so many people hide that stuff. Even from an early age we learn to be duplicitous‚ to cover our trails and hide our scent. That to me was never as fascinating as revealing our trail and accentuating our scent. I was always more fascinated by the world's reaction to what's going on than the maintenance of appearances that were a lie. I'm not sure where I got that from.
You always mentioned that what you put out there is because you come from a place with a lot of love. Maybe that mixed with knowing that‚ even though there's that shock value‚ there's that understanding as well. I don't know why I just thought of this‚ but I haven't heard you write a tune about getting drunk and killing your woman. I don't think you have one of those‚ do you?
I was at a Felice Brothers show and they were like‚ "Here's another one about getting drunk and killing your woman." [Laughter] And I was thinking about it today with your songs‚ like‚ "God‚ man‚ he really goes all over the place." Like I was saying before‚ there's the spiritual aspect‚ the political‚ the social commentary‚ those very private‚ intimate moments that you poetically capture. And I've listened to this tune about 1000 times‚ "Hollow." Crushing.
Yeah‚ that's one of my favorite‚ too.
I thought that might go on the classics list‚ if you're gonna put out the greatest hits.
I should take a poll before I make that one‚ so I don't leave any out. I think it's an interesting thing that you said‚ about the idea of coming from a loving support network. I think that's a huge shaper. I can't imagine if I had truly felt my family was against me on any level‚ how that would have changed things. My rebelliousness would have taken a much different form. For me‚ it was a lot like‚ "We love you!" And then‚ me wanting to test that‚ sort of poke it with a stick‚ like‚ "Really? You love me? Do you love me now? How about if I do this? Really‚ you still love me?" There was lot of that going on‚ curiously poking that love with a stick. And I used to be really bad about that; I used to do that a little too much‚ but I was just curious. But the love was true‚ and I could have poked it with a stick all my life‚ and it would have just stayed loved. If it had not been that love I had grown up in‚ if I had had a more dysfunctional family‚ I don't even know. "Oh really‚ you hate me?" I don't even know if I would have poked that with a stick. I would have run in the other direction. Even though I was poking it with a stick‚ I was staying within very close proximity to it.
How was High Sierra this year?
I felt a little bad‚ to be honest‚ because the last show we had done [with Davis] was New Year's‚ and we went up on that stage pretty cold. And I guess I should be proud of us for it being as fun and cool as it was‚ and High Sierra is one of my favorite places on the planet. But on the other hand‚ I felt a little bad 'cuz I felt like High Sierra deserved a fresher face. Now the weekend itself was fun as hell and sleepless as ever. Lots of big kids in a big sand box. [Laughs] So that whole element was definitely there. In a microcosm‚ it was an interesting challenge because it's one of the few places on the planet where I'm not the underdog anymore. I like being the underdog. I've gotten used to being the underdog‚ and when I'm not the underdog‚ suddenly‚ I don't know who I am. That's probably the problem with living such a long scrappy life. You've got your Batman utility belt on‚ and all of a sudden I don't need these tools. I'm like‚ How am I gonna do this? How am I gonna just accept the love and enjoy‚ as opposed to trying so hard to win it in the first place?
Yeah‚ that's weird.
That sort of follows me through my life too. I'm much more used to trying to get something than I am used to having it.
Right. I think when you're used to having it the whole dynamic's gonna have to shift pretty drastically.
Yeah‚ it's like what am I gonna do with it now? That's when I pull out my stick and start poking. [Laughter ]
There you go.
Do you love me now? Do you still love me? It's like the cell phone commercial. Do you love me now? Do you still love me? What if I do this? What if I kill this chipmunk? [Laughter]