Colin Meloy talks about the creative process, Johnny Cash’s house burns, and other songwriting newsBy Don • Category: Songwriting News
AVC: Songwriters often start out writing a ton before slowing down later in life. Andy Partridge of XTC, for one, has said the creative process is finite.
CM: Andy Partridge said that? He of the Fuzzy Warbles? I think the reason is practical—you just don’t have as much time as you used to. The first two records we did were populated entirely by songs that were written when I was working a day job and wasn’t on the road five or six months out of the year. Music was a relief from day-to-day ennui. Now I have a different relationship with it—it’s what I live and breathe. I’m finding I’m changing my work patterns a little bit. The Crane Wife was kind of an experiment in that sense because 80 percent of the record was written just a couple of months prior to the recording, which was a totally new thing for me. I have a feeling that that might be more how I work coming up. I’m at a very nascent point right now in the decision process for what direction this music will be taking. But I assume some time in the next eight to 10 months I’ll want to carve out a chunk of time to really sit down and focus on writing songs.
Ring of fire. Johnny Cash’s legendary home, recently purchased by Bee Gee Barry Gibb to use as a songwriting haven burned to the ground yesterday, April 10, 2007.
Aerosmith guitarist Brad Whitford talks to Goldmine magazine about his contribution to Aerosmith’s songwriting process:
Goldmine: As a songwriter you’ve contributed songs to the band on a much smaller scale than say Steven or Joe. Do you regret that you didn’t push your writing with the band earlier in your career?
Brad Whitford: No, I don’t regret it. It’s just the nature of the way things have gone. I literally got pushed out of the writing circle. I don’t consider myself a terribly prolific writer. I can write music with other people if they’re better songwriters than I am. I really can’t create a song. It’s very difficult to do. That’s why the people that can do it are very few and far between. I’m certainly not that type of a guy. More of a guitar player, more of the kind of [guy] who comes up with enough riffs and ideas to write a song. But to write lyrics and come up with a melody for it, it won’t happen.
Not songwriting related. David Lynch analyzes product placement in movies. (I happen to disagree with him but his analysis is priceless.)