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Lucy Wainwright Roche


My first show is so bad like I was so bad. I was super uncomfortable. Onstage not particularly capable and the second show was at the living room that one was much better because I realized that the best strategy was just to be myself. This is designed matters with Debbie. Millman off for fifteen years to be moment has been talking with designers and other creative people thought what they do how they got to the and what they're thinking about and working on this episode a conversation with Lucy wainwright roach about her musical family her career as a singer songwriter and her musical tastes. I really like sad music. Most of the songs I love are really sad. Here's w despite the fact that Lucy wainwright broach comes from music royalty. Her father is Grammy Award winning. Folk artists Loudon wainwright the third. Her mother was one third of the legendary folk trio the roaches and her half siblings. Are Rufus and Martha Wainwright? She started her career as an elementary school teacher. Eventually she began singing backup in her brothers band and by twenty ten she had recorded and released her own CD. When you hear her beguiling voice and listened to her songs you might conclude. She had no choice in the matter. There are ways till this. But my you Lucy Wainwright Road here in the studio today to talk about her life. Her career her family and her music. And maybe she'll sing a song for us. Lucy wainwright Roach. Welcome to design matters. Thanks for having me. Let's see I understand that you're a rapid eminem fan and even know every word to clean out my closet. Is that true that is true. No one has ever heard me sing it except for my mother considers singing it now. I don't think I can. I think that would take some real preparation. And and maybe I I might have to be overly exhausted to do darn tired today. When did you first discover EMINEM? And what was the allure? I just heard him on the radio. That song Mockingbird one of the songs about his kid and many of his songs are so heartbreaking and incredibly fit together. It's just jaw dropping to me and he actually reminds me of my dad. Writing was a little bit too. Which my dad I don't think would be into. I could see that when he talks about his family and his candidness both of their writing that I can. I can see wouldn't ordinarily thought that we never have occurred to me but I think you're right. Lucy you were born in raised in Greenwich Village Near City. Your parents split up when you were too. And I've read that you live with your mom. Says he wrote in a tiny one bedroom apartment where you had the bedroom and she had the living room. Your mom is said that while. It was often financially stressful. You never had the sense you were poor. Have you and your mom always been close? Yes my mom and I are really Enmeshed you might say and We talk most everyday and text a lot and we work together too so we sometimes tour together and we shared a hotel room when I was a kid and we share hotel rooms still. I can even imagine what it must have been like to grow up with. Says he roach as your mother? I've been a fan of their music. A Rabid Fan. I might say and I could probably saying many many songs on the spot. Not that I'm going to do that together. Cabin Song but I've been a fan of their music since nineteen seventy nine What is your favorite song I would say? One of my all time favorite roaches songs. One season I love that song so much for it. Just it holds up. Every with every passing year I relate to it more and more which I'm not sure is a great sign about me in general but the song is just like it's so good well. Their music is timeless. I think every single one of their albums still hold up. Yeah I think so. Do how much time do you spend with your dad? At this point in your life we also worked together. I opened for him sometimes. And then sometimes me and my mom and my dad do shows altogether so it kind of goes in fits and starts with the whole family so maybe I'll see him a lot over a space of a couple of months working then not that often. But he's in New York and so am I but we're both on the road so part of the thing about everybody is just that we're all you have to catch each other in the same city at the same time which is a little hard but my dad is very good at keeping in touch so he likes to meet for dinner and he calls. If I don't see him. We talk on the phone. I don't want to spend that much time talking about your family. Because I wanNA talk about you and your music and your life but thought it would be fun to ask you for one sentenced descriptions of your immediate musical family. And we'll start with ANA and Kate mcgarrigle each individual Well yesterday was or I think the day before yesterday was kate. Mcgarrigle birthday She passed away now ten years ago. This is more than the sentence. Okay a sentence. I didn't know her well. But if we'd had the chance to get to know each other I think we would have liked each other. And what about Anna Anna? I don't see her often but when I do. She's mysterious and lovely Maggie Roach the late. Great Brilliant Maggie Roach Oh One of the most brilliant and loyal people that you could ever know also really love cheese Terry Roach She is absolutely fascinating to talk to on any topic absolutely any topic. Yes and also just one of my all time. Favorite People Loudon wainwright the third. It's funny the thing that comes into my head is that I think he's a great dad which I don't think is Something that he's known for. I don't think people think that about him but I would say he's been a great dead to me. Sometimes that looks different than what you think. Mold absolutely Martha wainwright when her light shines upon new. It's the best feeling that there is Rufus wainwright. We are very different in our sort of way that we are in the world but he has this deep sweet sentimental thing about him that just keeps everybody very connected in the family and then finally your mom says he roach she almost always is exactly spot on with whatever she says or does there's so many things say out all of them. But yeah I I do have to say and I don't Brag on on the show but I have the noted distinction of having seen every single person that I just mentioned in concert really absolutely. It's like a collection of like cereal box toys. And you have them all but I have never seen you perform altogether other than the roaches right. It's everybody has been Solo. Well we have done that We went on a cruise altogether and performed on the cruise altogether. That was intense Didn't you also do that in when you were in Alaska? Didn't you all travel together? And then yeah. Take the audience son buses and trains with you. We did in Alaska. Yes we did that work. Did you pick people up along the way it was? It's this thing called roots on the rails These people run lovely people run run these things where musicians coming in the audience common. It's kind of an all expense paid trip and oftentimes. They'll be on trains for a lot of the time and even sleeper trains like one of the ones that I did. We slept on the train. The one in Alaska. We didn't sleep on the train. And it involves some buses as well and some boats so the audience came with us or maybe like forty five audience members and then me my mom my dad and my brother and my aunt Sloan. Martha couldn't come because her son was starting kindergarten and I with your grandmother selling CDs. She wasn't with us on that but she used to sell the CDs when I was a kid with the roaches but It was fun we saw Wales. I mean basically if I see a whale it was worth it and I did I tell you. At that time I was just a couple of years ago. I rented that when you were four or five years old that was when you first graced a stage was at the great bottom line nightclub in New York City where Rufus and Martha Wainwright were performing. Talk About. What happened they? They got me up on stage. I think it might have been a Christmas show or something a roaches Christmas show. Maybe and I got up and I was supposed to sing and I just burst into tears and my dad had come and get me off the stage. I remember that he came up to the edge of the stage in lifted me off the stage in my mom thinks that probably the whole audience thought that it was child abuse because there were like get up on the stage and then but I think I thought I wanted to do it and then I got out there and I was like Oh Jeez and we. You just shy shy. I was very shy as a kid. I did not Not Not with people close to me but but in school. I didn't talk and stuff really at all until about second grade. I had a teacher who got me to talk and then I just no no I talk incessantly. I understand you. I tried to play the guitar when you were about seven. We tried to teach yourself. Who was teaching you my mom and my aunt Terry My Aunt Terry was going to teach me and they got a left handed guitar. Because I'm left handed and I think she tried to teach me Old Macdonald on on the guitar and I just I just wasn't feeling it and we all gave up and then it wasn't until I was in high school. I started to play the guitar and I play the guitar right handed. I don't know if that was part of it. Like maybe maybe. I'm not that left handed or something in the but also seven young for the guitar because it hurts your fingers also in. I can play five chords on a guitar but I play with the right handed guitars. Well and I've tried to switch thinking that I'd be able to play better that way but I can't yeah me too same and also by the way five cords is all you need time. Neil young did it in three. Yeah but yeah. I don't have the gene. It's my biggest regret my life that I don't have that gene really. Yeah I just and one of the things that I really wanted to ask you and I ask every musician that comes on the show this question. How do you write a song? I often feel panic like I'll never write a song again so I'm a little bit in that phase right now and I also often have sort of a blackout about what happens when I when I write but that aside. I usually sit with the guitar and I'll either get something. I'm going to try that. I like or or some kind of melody that goes with it and up. Sometimes I'll get stand-in words that I just put in to like at the shape of the melody and the not replace them later. A thing that happens to me a lot. I'll get averse and of course and then I'll be like well said that and then I'll be like. Oh Jeez I have to finish this somehow and I. It's hard to get past that initial idea for me but oftentimes you go into a zone. I'm not even sure what happens but man. I'm so grateful every time it happens And it's especially great when you don't turn on the song that you just wrote. That's the thing that happens a lot when you hate it. Yeah like as soon as you do it. My mom says that it's like a cat who coughs up a hairball and then jumps back and looks at it like who did that you know. I think that's pretty good description. I'm it's hard to not kind of turn on your work. I think either partway through or afterwards. I mean after I've made a record I usually do not wanna hear it ever again It's that same feeling of somehow. It just presses your buttons in a way that other people's stuffed doesn't do you ever wants a song is finished. Ever go back and we write lyrics or changed the chorus or do anything to augment it in some way. I haven't ever done that. There's a song On My new record that I really like still miraculously but there is a lyric in it that I wish I had changed and I haven't changed it yet but I would say I I feel regret about about it So I thought well I mean maybe you you could change it. You know just because it's not the official recording. I could change it and show so I'm thinking about changing it because every time I get to that part. I'm like oh. I wish I hadn't well Joni. Mitchell and Stevie Nicks have changed lyrics. I've heard Stephen Exchange the lyrics to landslide. Which is sort of shocking and then Joni Mitchell is changed lyrics to Hegira with whoever is playing saxophone with her. Yeah no she'll say Michael Brecker or whoever your plane she started at. I think with Michael Brecker Yeah. I was listening to a recording of Joan Baez doing diamonds and rust recently and I was trying to play for someone this thing that I'd heard her doing show. Then I discovered that it wasn't in the original that she had changed something choose doing in performances but not What are the lyrics such? She changed the lyrics that she changed our. If you're offering diamonds and rust I've already paid. I've already paid is the original. But when I saw her do it more recently. She said if you're offering diamonds and rust I'll take the diamonds which I thought was very very change. I could totally get behind one of the things that I heard. Joni Mitchell. Say and one of her live recordings was that when you're standing in front of an audience and they ask you to play a song. She thought it was sort of interesting. That nobody ever asks a painter to repaint a painting. But yet we're always asking performers to Redo these songs that are part of our lives. Yeah and she jokes. Nobody ever asked Van Gogh to paint a sunflower again. That's true that's true so I know your your family also tried to get you to take piano lessons and you weren't interested either but there's a lot of piano on your records and I've seen you play piano. So when did that take hold? Yeah I don't really play the piano enough to play Anything I'd I wish that I had stuck with lessons I know. How many times do you hear I remember as a child? All the adults saying that they wish they had stayed with piano lessons. Nine now am an adult who wishes that I quit because I thought that my teacher didn't smell good reason. Light therapy my phone because of that really regretted yes. I think he didn't smell good. I thought that he smelled that. And I refuse to keep doing it. And you know. That wasn't the best decision I ever made. I wish I had because I love the piano. And on my last record my most recent record there's a lot of piano and mostly the producer my friend Jordan Ham and she played most of it and I adore the piano on recordings so I wish that I had stuck with it more and I've thought about taking lessons now as an adult and it's on a list of things I think of doing don't but maybe I will. Someday you wrote your first songs in high school but you get then gave up music and stated that the lesson you wanted to do was get up on stage and perform. Was that because of your shyness or because of feeling sort of the your family vibe. Yeah I think in high school I did write my first songs. Might my first song that I wrote was about babysitting It was about my the kid that I babysat for all through high school and then he and his family moved away and I went to college and it was about the heartbreak of that But in high school I got really interested in teaching and I volunteered a lot in the lower school classrooms at my high school and I sort of was moving in that direction. And I think I'd been living in the soup of the music thing for so long but I walked towards college kind of dropping. All that behind me When I was in college I did a lot of booking and like my brother came to play and other people I was fans of came to play another family. Members came to play at college and I booked them but I wasn't really interested in performing And then I think it kind of towards the end of college. I started to notice the absence of that you attended Oberlin College in Ohio and graduated with a degree in creative writing and then went on to get a masters degree in education from the Bank College of Education in Manhattan. What made you decide? You wanted to become a teacher. I always loved working with kids. I always I really just always wanted to do that and to this day. I'm torn about not doing it. There was this wistful look in your eyes. You said this I have read that you think. There are some similarities in terms of engagement with an audience and with students. But now especially being on the road as much as you are on your own. It must be hard to not have that collective energy around. Yeah definitely it's one of the amazing things about being. A teacher is just the day in and day out. -Ness of it and how the sheer number of hours that you spend with these people and even though you're not with their parents it's a very intimate thing dealing with people's families and children and struggles in school and and you're really big president part of people's everyday lives and now I'm not like that at all. I'm literally passing through town and that is what my life is so. It's really different. In that way. You taught both in Durham North Carolina and New York City. How different with those experiences. Well in Durham. I didn't have my degree yet and I was teaching mostly preschoolers so they were really little and preschool. And three year olds. The most of them are three three year. Olds are really interesting. 'cause they kind they sort of get what's going on. And then they also have this like total. Like bully for anything could be happening like they've been being told all these weird things like you grow inside of another human. Being in some cases. Santa Claus comes down the chimney like they're always they're like. Oh okay sure you know like everything. Yeah and there. They've got it kind of figured out but then it's also kind of confusing So that was really fun then. In in New York I taught second grade and then third grade Which is a whole other thing. I love second and third grade. I think it's a very industrious age. Like People Wanna be doing stuff and making books and creating their own thing and one of the things I love the most about that time period was I got really into telling stories with them We set out trying to write stories but a lot of some kids are really limited by the physical demands of actually writing so we started doing story telling instead where they would tell stories from their own lives in front of the class and that was a hoot and so great and also taking away the writing the actual physical writing of it meant that they could get the story structure things sorted out without that in case that was like a stumbling block for them so I love that. I miss that we bringing music into the classroom as well not really I. I was pretty shy. I was really shy as a teacher. I think it'd be better teacher now because I think after all these years of doing shows I'm less shy The only songs I taught the more the songs that I was taught in elementary school so I taught them the fifty nifty United States Song. Where you list. All the states in Alabama. Yeah L. Let's get Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut and I remember on the first day when my teacher taught us that I just thought I'll never be able to learn that and then you do and I remember on the first state in the second grade class me. Sing it for them and then being like. We can't do that but they totally they all know it so I still do. They probably still do and there was a song about parallel grams that I learned in elementary school that I taught them. Those were the only songs that what made you decide to give up teaching. Enjoying what the wainwright family calls. The family business I in two thousand and five my brother Who you might think isn't paying attention to anyone else He that's not true though about him. he kind of has a a a covert. I on everybody in a way you might not expect and he was like. I think you should come out on the road with me this summer and I did I went on his tour bus and I sang backup with him. I never spoke a word on. Stage owes painfully shy during all of that. But it was really fun. I mean touring on a tour. Bus Is really fun and and living in his life for a minute is really fun so I went. I went back to teaching after that summer. It had kind of gotten under my skin a little bit like but I really like that world and I miss that world and I think I after another year of teaching decided that if I was going to give it a shot I better just do it and thinking we'll mail come back to teaching and so then After that next year I left. There is some wonderful versions of you and your brother. Singing Hallelujah. On Youtube which are just gorgeous. Essentially saying that's the first one that we ever did together. Yeah your first Gig. Your First Solo GIG was opening fear. Father in two thousand and five at the Rockwood Music Hall in New York. What was that like? It was really bad. My first show is so bad like I I was so bad I was super uncomfortable. Onstage not particularly capable and not doing myself any favours and the second show was the living room which also closed. I think And that one was much better because in that time I realized that the best strategy was just to be myself. That's a very fast learning her. Well I think it was such a debacle trying to like. Did you cry on stage? No no not yet but I was crying on the inside and I was behaving like a Weirdo like I was. I think I I had watched so many performances that I think maybe I thought something else was happening but really people are best. When they're channeling their their real self and Once I figured that out it got a lot better. That's say that the living the second show was like fantastic but it was less. It felt better. When did you start to feel comfortable fully comfortable in fully yourself on stage probably within the the first year of doing shows? I mean there's nothing like just doing thirty shows in a row to kind of get your act together literally. You know and nothing else can do that except for doing the shows. You know you have to really want to do it though if that first experience was as you put it terrifying and also terrible. Yeah I think I wanted to live the shape of the lives of the people who I grew up around. I don't know if that was the best decision. But that's what I wonder why. Well I knew full well going into this that this was not a in most cases not lucrative and in most cases not super stable. I knew all that I have no excuse for. I didn't go into it blind at all but I definitely have come up against the reality of that and feeling like wow what was I thinking you know at the same time My whole life is built around this now and amazing thing. I have gotten to see amazing things that I never would have seen but at the same time I think I think one one thing about it is when I started out all my peers. Were kind of starting out and they were doing whatever job usually not the job they really wanted but maybe working towards the job they really wanted and I left teaching and went out to do this and everybody was sort of like well. That's cool and then ten years later everybody's life is like really developed into a much more kind of stable You know that they've ended up in a certain spot And I'm doing the same thing and it's a lot less cool looking you know but you're making music that's true you're living a completely creative life it's true your first was the eponymous titled Lucy and was released in twenty ten and I understand you. And your mom were touring at that point to raise money to make the album. Did you sell produce? The entire thing My stepdad Stewart. Lerman he produced that I record and my first couple hoardings. I Made Two E. P. As in that record and those recordings were made really in the seat of the family so Stewart Produce Them. I worked with him a lot one on one the roaches sang on that I record. I think my dad also sang on that I record so it was very much totally insulated in the world of the family Which the two records after. That have been really different in that way. Would you do a song from that album shirt and if you can also tell us a little bit about the song you're going to sing your songs or stories okay? This is called open season. I wrote it after. I took the train out to coney island one day in the winter and they happen to be taking down Luna Park the old amusement park there without any fanfare whatsoever I just showed up. And they were removing this giant rocketship. That was but sort of poetic. I know on his rhetoric at home and write a song. This song is a song that a lot of people request. It's also a song that whenever I'm in a relationship people are like I really like that song. But it's about so and so like the person before whatever and I'm always like no it isn't it was so that keeps getting said to me. How can what to make of that but anyway good okay. Open season on a broken. This is that the summer carnival and can hear the sound through the wonder wheel the science of way we feel the core of that all of mine and Hi are you on all into beached waiting on last chance. Rocket over. The board is no me and will Well we this wind the slightly never one never close your eyes and yeah the T. Spin as it begins to snow. You're careful that's not all it's watch a steal the souvenir Laura warnings in our as we are Reading Myla are you on each waiting on last chance rocket over the board. No me and boy Where are we so take a deep breath? Yoga added another chance. We will be back again. Comes around on any cloud moving suits in poker ways to their final to see the see. Ya Thank you now is beautiful loose. You've been described as a master of musical melancholy. Would you say that that is accurate? Well I mean that's a nice compliment because I I really liked said music a lot And I I don't think I'll ever had have the feeling towards my songs that I have toward songs that I love. Most of the songs I love are really sad. And some of your favorites. Oh well there's a song called holy by Chris. Perico that I love so much. That's so sad. I just listened to it today. I can't listen to it without crying and I really love it. Someone like Patty Griffin has a lot of really sad songs for her great. I'm a big fan and I don't know her well and I did a few shows with her last year. It was great. Her audience is great and I got to watch her show every night and she's so amazing and wonderful so that was great. I also love songs that maybe don't sound that sad but strike me as sad like the Paul Simon Crazy love on the album graceland. It's almost upbeat. But it breaks my heart that song I really loved to Take upbeat sounding songs and turn them into what someone coined sad snooze irs. Oh like master of melancholy better. I saw that I wasn't even going to ask you. I don't think there's a better example of you doing that. Then the song on your album that you Released in twenty thirteen The album is titled. There's a last time for everything which features your really unusual and brilliant cover of the Swedish popstar Robbins. Call your girlfriend. The original is a club. Beat heavy pop dance anthem and the entire video of her. Doing it is of her dancing in a gymnasium It's such a great video such a deal. You perform it with a few chords on an acoustic guitar and a small choir. I was wondering if you would do that for us as well but also tell us about why you decided to do that song. What is it about that song? When I was making that record Jordan the producer and I took a drive to see Nico case in Atlanta. We drove from Nashville to Atlanta. Kind of in the middle of making the record and we played that song and we both love that song and about halfway through the song we sorta both looked at each other and thought like could we possibly and we did. And I'm so glad we did. I love that song because it's so unusual like what she's saying the way that she's saying. It is not something that I'd heard quite that way before I heard you describe or read it described as a reverse. Joe Lean Dolly. Parton which I think. That's actually true. Yeah totally that's true. Yeah I just love it and then we tried to do it slowed down which is my mode that I wanNA take every song into Kind of really works. In fact a lot of people think it's my song and then when I tell them that it's a dance song. They're just totally shocked. Because I think when you hear it slowed down. It doesn't seem like it would be dance song at all. In fact the other day somebody came up to me at the table and said Oh my God the other day I was in the store and and suddenly this dance remix version of your song call. Your girlfriend came on the radio and I was like. Oh my God. She's gotten so big that they're remixing. Her songs dance song and I was like not to worry. I haven't gotten so big as that. The original diner so I love that song and I'll definitely do it for you if you want. Yes please girlfriend. It's time you know Say It's not but you know take second-guessing thing is And then when she never mantle To make sense right now but just friend and then you call your girlfriend. Uh It's time you the is Say It's not You Owe John Kennedy. Something him man. explain it so therefore we can't the and make sense right now but you sir call your girlfriend friend time you give Say It's not Fall Jazzman it's GONNA be. The Laura is still make sense right now just friends and then you cool who jus-. Nah ooh. It's time you thank you. Thank you for that. Let's see what made you decide to record this album in Nashville? The last two. I didn't Nashville the first one was in Jordan. Brooke Hamlin's basement Did that in about a week and then we decided to make another record together and at this point Jordan is working out of a studio called. Moxie that is a really beautiful amazing place. We took a lot longer to make this record the the one before. It was very quick this when we made over in chunks over like a year and a half or so. Yeah it was a great experience dislocation. Impact your songwriting. Yes there's a lot of place in a lot of my songs probably because I spend a lot of time driving around so there's a lot of sort of like wherever I am seeps into the songs most of these songs I wrote in New York some of them I finished in Nashville but the beauty of the location of the place where I made the record did plan to the recording because for example when I did my vocal. She has this recording room. That faces the woods with these big windows. And so you take in the morning and it's beautiful. I had to take it sunset. You know it and it just was very pleasurable to sing and I. I think I sang in a slightly different way. You know how when you personally make make a shift. It feels big to. You probably heard the record. Maybe didn't notice that but for me there are a lot of things about this record that we're like a shift for me. Your family has famously written about each other. It started with your father. One of his songs written shortly after Rufus was born is titled. Rufus is a tit man. He also wrote about you several times. One Song he wrote with your aunt Terry after you were born is titled Screaming Issue. Which is about your plaintive constant crying he also wrote. I'd rather be lonely about your sister. Martha who countered with her own song to him. Bloody Mother fucking asshole. Which I've actually seen her perform live in. It is just a tour. De Force rivers written Lucy's blue for you. Have you written any songs about any members of your family? I have Largely I've stayed out of any controversy family in part because my writing can be a bit vague. Sometimes so maybe they they haven't noticed. This record has a song that is about my family on it as a whole And you're talking about little beasts. Yes and the song is called the city and I wrote it On a night where the whole family was together in New York it was I. I think it might have been my dad's a record. Release of his I was on tour with indigo girls and I had a night off and I had considered flying home to be in this. Show that my brother. My sister and my other sister who isn't a performer was going to be in and my mom and everybody was going to be in it And I decided not to go and It was a hard decision and so I had a night off in Petoskey Michigan on the indigo girls to our night sat in the hotel and I wrote the city and that is about the family business. I would say it's interesting. Because the song is about the pressure and uncertainty of life as a touring musician and after I listened to it actually went to your website to see her tour dates and it seems as if you're on the road all the time it seems as if you did two hundred plus shows last year yeah. I'm away a lot. I'm trying to shift that a little bit just for sanity So it's interesting because it was vague enough where I really thought it was about Your Life. Not The life of your family. Yeah Yeah it's it's it's sort of about the the circus of the whole situation and and everybody's writing but each other and and how people's lives and relationships and pain seep into the work that they do and stuff. So does it ever bother you that there is so much about your childhood and bringing in a lot of the songs of your family. No honestly I I. It's hard for me to imagine what my concept of my close family members would be if you subtracted the songs. Because I listen to all those people's records and usually you don't have that kind of a window into people's inner life or work in that particular way and so it's hard for me to say like imagine my dad without knowing his work because he's talked so much about himself and his work and so it's kind of valuable information to have. Yeah I think the only other thing that comes close is fleetwood. Mac's rumors which everybody loves to sort of read into this about MC about Lindsay. Was this about Christine. Was it about Stevie. And makers deedee and Lindsey and get your pets your life all the time. That was the one album in the seventy. Well we all have and everyone has their own and this is true bump music with everyone not just the family but Aaron has their own relationship to these songs. You like take them into a private space in your experience them so I recently was in. La Singing some backup for a show that Rufus was recording for audible project. He's doing with them and and we did one of my dad's songs your mother and I which he wrote about me when or addressed to me when my parents were splitting up and amongst the siblings. We haven't probably discussed alone of everyone's feelings about the songs but he chose the songs and he was going to sing that song and during rehearsal he started to sing it and he he just I. It's tears we had to stop and it was interesting because we just all are having her own emotional reaction to everyone's work and it's private also you know so you might not know like I wouldn't have thought that would happen but it's also a great thing to be able to appreciate each other's work. We're I think we're different enough that we don't get in each other's way but we can still collaborate which is a nice balance. I think your third album. Your most recent album is titled Little Beasts. It was released last October. I think it is maybe saddest but definitely your most extraordinary album yet I think we really see your evolution as a singer and a songwriter and performer. Confidence in your lyrics is just beautiful. The song quick with me is a duet with Matthew Perryman Jones. It's about two people who love each other very much must break up the tune. Fifth of July looks back at how you felt during and after the two thousand sixteen presidential election. The album is really quite extraordinary. And I believe it shows your brilliance. In a way that is really singular in among the way rate roaches. Congratulations on this release. What made you decide to release this album on your own I've never worked the record company. I've always just called up the printing plant New Jersey and had the records pressed and sold them That has been my business model. I sort of live in this funny little section of the music business that still alive where people buy records I think p by the mostly so that you'll sign them and you can talk while you sign them. I don't know how many people put them into a CD player But owning my own music has been the key to staying afloat for me. I was wondering if you could do one less on for US. Cher for you. Leave my favorite song on. The album is titled Heroin which isn't exactly about what it sounds like. It's a crafty little song. Can you tell us about it? And then and then played for sure. I think the whole re this whole record is probably the most personal record that I've made and part of that is that I I just decided to lyrically. I wasn't as constrained as I normally am. I let myself say some things that I wouldn't normally or I didn't kind of edit things out that I might have shied away from before any any examples When you're talking about Yeah I mean I think the song heroin is probably one of my most personal songs. It's completely autobiographical. And it's painful and I didn't stop that from existing again. It may not show up that way to others but to me it felt like I was really you know it was a vulnerable thing for me. The whole record was kind of like that. But definitely that song and I love it when I hear that somebody connected to that song because I mean I love it when I hear the anybody's connected to any of the songs that seems like a miracle and it's such a great thing But that Song meant a lot to me and so you hope when you put them out in the world someone will hear that or will mean something to someone so Yeah Yeah it very well may be my favorite of your songs so that let me see but yeah. This song has some place in it. This has Some driving in some place in it Have you ever driven on the Million Dollar Highway in Colorado? Yes it's scary. It's really scary. I've driven cross country and there were moments on that road where I actually. I was driving with someone else and we take turns so when one of us wasn't driving we'd be sleeping and there was a moment where I was like. Oh Keith wake up because I can't do this by myself. Yeah it's quite harrowing and I liked driving but it was just a little bit scary which I guess is what this to. You sometimes. See your favorite show. It's one you want June. Never was of me. Haven't busy counting the season stack up the well and they and that's about Some things on say aren't survivable or advisable. They happy birthday heroin. But how do you? How STILL I could've gone thousands of feet above the oceans ground after the dark. Henny stern son another one more. Very say Hugging European turns from the some beauties views are never done is sort of dude a -able or and it's the million dollar highway on a snowy day. Sadly long stay he some things that how. Ya Se iron survivable or advisable happy guy. I loved you and how are still I didn't Say This but actually I've gotten some letters from people who are really concerned that I have a heroin addiction thing which is actually not. I feel I feel like if you really listen to the song. It doesn't seem like that but people are worried. Well it is it just say the word heroine trump sure lord got the same thing he was not talking about it at all. Yeah and then. Those that did didn't think that a lot of people know that the needle and the damage done is about heroin and Neil. Young struggle with it. Yeah probably not but I guess. That's the mystery of understanding but I was. I was concerned enough to go and look at the lyrics. Yeah Yeah not not because I was worried but just because I wanted to know the history of the song and understand what you were talking. Yeah but my. My friend said to me that sentence she said it's like saying happy birthday heroin like if you like getting You know going back into something you should stay away from so she said that and then I was like You're right also. I have a lot of problems. But that's not what happens to be not one of them. See Wayne Right. Thank you for making such beautiful work and sharing it with the world. Thank you so much you can find out more about Lucy's music and concerts on website Lucy wainwright roach dot com. It is now the fifteenth anniversary of design matters. And I'd like to thank you for listening all these years and remember we can talk about making a difference. We can make a difference or we can do both forward to talking with you again. If you love this podcast. Please consider contributing to our brand new patriot. Community members get early access to the podcast transcripts of every interview invitations to live shows. Qna sessions with guests and a brand new annual magazine. You can learn more about this. Patriot dot com forward slash. Debbie millman. If you subscribe to this podcast do apple podcasts. Please read a review or linked to a podcast on social media design matters is produced by Curtis Fox productions. The show is recorded at the school of Visual Arts masters of branding program in New York City. The first and longest running branding program in the world. The editor in chief of design matters media is decorated pettit and the art director. Is Emily Weiland?

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