I actually think sadness and darkness can be very beautiful and healing.
But I can't really say there is too much modern music that I'm blown away by at this moment
I'm fortunate I have this coterie of musicians around me to help take music to next level. Being surrounded by so much creative energy, so many creative people really feeds that creativity in me
I'd have these weird experiences where I'd just be walking down the street with this chord progression in my head, this happened more than a few times, and I'd walk home and find a fax in my machine and it would match the music in my head
I privilege the music over the lyrics
I certainly wouldn't say that my life is a disaster, but there have been moments where I've felt like that
Happy music doesn't tend to move me much
My second record was all about big ideas - I was trying to make big statements about the culture, about life. I think in a certain way, I was a 27 year old kid with a guitar
It's inevitable your environment will influence what you do
If I were to do this over I'd play a lot more shows before I made a record
I try to make sure that the Buddhism is more or less implicit in the music rather than explicit
I got a publishing deal with BMG, they were supportive, and some money to record demos
Simon Hale, the British arranger, does all string and wood arrangements on my records
Lately I've been a workaholic. I'm in the studio all the time and I've helped to produce a couple of artists
Emerson, Lake & Palmer or King Crimson or Gentle Giant - the worst prog rock references I can come up with. Though I totally loved those groups as a kid.
For my second record I had gotten ProTools and started to familiar myself with hard disc recording.
I also wanted to make a record that was about other things than romance, yeah, after two years on the road singing all the songs from the first album, I got kind of tired of that.
And frankly, when I made that record, hit songs were not what I was trying to achieve.
So I started chanting when I was nineteen, which was about twelve years ago, and it really had a huge impact on my outlook, happiness, and general creativity.
When I was a teenager, I got into four track recorders, drum machines, and synthesizers, and I started producing instrumental music.
My first two records were more energetic; Phantom Moon is subtle, quiet; so these various reactions are just something I expected
I think my Buddhist practice has a profound influence on my life and encompasses my creative projects
A real foolproof way to do it is play your stuff by hook or by crook and build up a grass roots following
So, once I've written a song, you know, I'm pretty happy with what the song is on its own terms.
I started playing music at a pretty young age
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