t h i n g s + f l e s h

lyrical essays on songwriting + other mysteries

10 little crayons

This week I’m choosing the sequence of the songs for G’s next record. I have contributed six of them. There’s a lot of data in the brain that informs the song sequence on an album, but essentially it’s a “feel” process: … Continue reading

November 5, 2014 · 15 Comments

i wish i could say

Sometimes I wish I could say I’d been a newspaper delivery boy. Or a milkman. Or a bridge toll-taker … do people still do that for a living? I love the routine of … Continue reading

October 23, 2014 · 23 Comments

autumn spice mix tape

Autumn, it is said, carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons. I hope this indie autumn mix (best served with the first hot chocolate of the season) will … Continue reading

October 2, 2014 · 13 Comments


When I dress to go out, I usually end up taking off the leather cuffs I have put on … or the vest, or the belt, or the hat. This sort … Continue reading

September 23, 2014 · 20 Comments


Standing alone on an empty stage beneath a wash of spotlights, soundchecking acoustic guitars, it’s easy to see that a concert hall is a house of worship. Melody is a profound spirit, after … Continue reading

September 4, 2014 · 25 Comments


When I go on tour, I meet a lot of interesting people. After a show on Crooked Road, a fellow calling himself Star Blanket handed me a mysterious bag — whose contents, he … Continue reading

August 28, 2014 · 9 Comments


Motels exist to make songwriters think of loneliness. To be a songwriter is to be attached to something: your kids, your home, a flower, a moment, injustice, anything. You attach meaning to sound, and sound … Continue reading

August 13, 2014 · 8 Comments

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