As the writer, you’re always a presence in the song. If you get close to what human beings are like, you’re writing about common experience. We all do much the same things, so if you nail somebody, then you’ve also nailed yourself.
Well, first of all it’s entertainment. That stops us becoming too pretentious or thinking we’re great artists.
Amplifying acoustic instruments more than a little is really cheating, and everything becomes a compromise.
I want people to come to my music without prejudice. I want them to get the music first. And who I am isn’t that important. If they like the songs to me that’s a good thing.
People want to hear about the extremes of human nature. They want things that are larger than their own lives, and more romantic, and not necessarily of their own experiences.
When you stand up acoustic in front of an audience, you really are a man without any clothes on. And that can be fun – it depends how much of an exhibitionist you are, I suppose. I quite enjoy it.
To stand up on a stage alone with an acoustic guitar requires bravery bordering on heroism. Bordering on insanity.
I’m glad there are a lot of guitar players pursuing technique as diligently as they possibly can, because it leaves this whole other area open to people like me.
But music can save your life sometimes. It probably saved me from working in a bank or something. That’s a kind of salvation right there.
The thing I do, really, is a communication with audiences more than any achievement through records.