Q When did you discover that there was this higher force?
A I learned that from Woody Guthrie… well…when you take a look at the things he’s done, it occurs that only he himself couldn’t be responsible for it. It’s the life force that’s coming from somewhere. This indescribable place.
Q Is there any underlying philosophy to what you are trying to do with your life and work?
A Yeah. Search for beauty.
Q Do you feel people are getting that message? Do you need that feedback to know?
A You can usually look into people’s eyes.
Q You can’t do that when an album comes out.
A An album for me isn’t anything more than a collection of songs that I’ve written at a particular time. Songs I’ve written at a particular time. Songs I’ve written to be sung from the stage…not to go into a studio and make an album that has any type of message to send to people. It’s just a collection of songs. It’s always been that way for me. I don’t take those things too seriously. I just put out one album after another…Songs aren’t any good really unless they can be sung on stage. They’re meant to be sung to people, not to microphones in a recording studio. You don’t really get the full impact of it in the recording studio.
Q Is that why you have been so spontaneous in the studio?
A No…because I’m so impatient. I don’t like hanging around studios. I’m not a technical wizard. I’m not interested in that aspect of the current recording, which the Beatles started with that Sgt. Pepper thing.
Q Do you keep up with pop music?
A Not really. All I really listen to is the music I’ve always listened to…country white blues or country black blues.
Q Many of your songs over the years have dealt with obligations to loved ones. How do you think your recent divorce will affect your work and life?
A Just because you’re divorced doesn’t mean you don’t love…the person you’re divorced from. It really doesn’t affect that. Divorce is just a game of the material world. It doesn’t really affect the reality of love one way or the other to me.
Q Do the songs still come easily?
A Some do, some don’t.
Q You said earlier that you’re concerned with maintaining the fire while recording a song in the studio. When you’re onstage performance an old song, like say, “Blowin’ in the Wind,” the spark has to be different than the one that ws there when you created the song. Can you get a hold on how that has evolved?
A Yeah…easily. I can’t explain. I’ve heard people say I don’t write any stuff like I used to. Well, I don’t know exactly what that means…because I’ve written so much different kind of stuff. Well, I don’t write anything like I used to. Well, so what. I wrote those songs and they’re still good. They are not like cars which you change the model every year. They are one of a kind and one of a kind only.