How many times are musicians asked, "Who do you sound like?" I never know how to answer the question, but for the sake of conversation and entertainment, I've been keeping a list of comparisons that people have made over the years. I can't say that I understand some of the comparisons, but if you blended them all together, maybe they would make sense. Here is the list with no further comment (in alphabetical order):

Eric Anderson, Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Holly, Chris Isaak, Lyle…

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Songwriting or song sharing is an opportunity for honesty. I value honesty and sincerity, but I know that I spend too much time walking through my days in my costume and mask; still, I often feel most real and genuine when I am writing or singing a song. I was very moved by John Lennon‘s first solo album. I’d never heard anything so raw and honest. There were the confessional writers who bared their hearts—in a way, anyway—but John really put it out there. I admired his willingness to risk the image he

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FLESH AND SPIRIT - Self-Interview 



Q: Describe your music. 

A: Do you mean, What style is it? You can probably put a label on it better than I can.

Q: No, I mean where does it come from? What drives you to write? What is at the core of your songs?

A: Where do they come from? They come from anywhere and everywhere, whatever my antenna picks up.

Q: That sounds kind of cosmic.

A: All right. I go to the places of light and dark within me and let them wrestle their way into songs. 

Q: Hmmm. 

A1: OK, like everyone else, I have

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I often find political songs to be kind of dull. I like a political song that has some layers of meaning and that can stand on its own outside a political context, or at least beyond one specific political context. Don’t get me wrong. I recognize that sometimes we need rallying songs, songs that keep the message simple and direct as a way of uniting people in a noble common cause. I know that these songs can be powerful and important at the right moment. Furthermore, I have been moved by these songs, but

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I recently cowrote a song called “Runaway Truck.” It started off as an angry us-vs.-them song born out of my fear that things were spinning out of control. The challenge of writing such a song is to decide whether it will be "part of the problem or part of the solution." Sometimes it’s hard to tell. As for my part in the song, I didn't want to mince words, but I knew I wanted to move toward greater connection rather than greater division. By the end of the song, it had become more of an urgent prayer:

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Any decent writer/performer has an audience, but they haven't all found each other yet. I want to find you because I am your audience, too. Where are you? Who are you? I don't need a trillion followers; I don't need to play stadiums; but I do want a genuine connection with my listeners, so give me a chance to listen to you. Write me a note. Ask me a question. Tell me about a particular song, line, melody—whatever it is, I’d love to know. 



Time is relentless, and we don't get it back--at least not in this form as we know it--so why read an obscure songwriter’s blog? Why do anything, for that matter?

Death. That’s why. A dark vision? No, it's more of a call to life. I'm calling us all to life. What is worth doing, anyway? I am writing this on September 11, a dark day in our country’s memory. Tomorrow is my birthday, a day that only a handful of friends and family members have any reason to think about. It’s all relative. W. S. Merwin ponders

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I will do all I can to keep these entries genuine. Here’s the deal: I’m as hungry as you are for something real, for something that really matters. When I encounter the genuine in a person or in artistic expression, I do feel passionate and excited about the connection. Music and words carry the possibility of genuine connection (as well as confusion and deception), and I play, listen to, or think about music and language all the time. Music and words matter to me. They move me and clarify life for me. I

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