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  • [THEME MUSIC PLAYING]

  • Thank you for spending a few minutes with us.

  • Sure.

  • But I do want to know about the new album, of the songs,

  • "Mass Education."

  • Was it the plan all along to do this?

  • Well, as far as the faux press conference

  • that we did to introduce "Mass Seduction," originally

  • the idea was I'm going to save some time.

  • I'm going to imagine what people might ask,

  • and then I'm going to just do it in front of a green screen

  • so that people will be able to just insert their own graphics.

  • And it'll be like, oh.

  • Look she was in Dubai doing this interview.

  • But then as we started actually doing it--

  • I wrote it with my good friend Carrie Brownstein--

  • it just ended up being complete satire.

  • So it was funny to see how many people--

  • journalists-- were terrified after that.

  • And I was like, no, I'm just having a joke.

  • It's a little joke.

  • But the inspiration for "Mass Education"--

  • this is kind of solipsistic-- but it was "Mass Seduction"

  • was the inspiration.

  • I just-- one of my good friends, Thomas Bartlett,

  • is a beautiful piano player.

  • And he really introduced me to my people in New York.

  • He was one of the first people I met,

  • and I got to just get to know downtown

  • characters and great artists and writers and freaks and weirdos.

  • And I finally found my place.

  • But we'd never played music together.

  • And so I just asked him if we could play these songs.

  • I wasn't sure if it would be properly released.

  • I just knew that as a culmination

  • of having written all the songs on "Mass Seduction"

  • that I wanted to calcify them just for myself

  • and getting to just live in them for a second with him

  • and perform them live with him and a piano.

  • Well, "Mass Seduction" was one of my favorite albums

  • of the last couple of years.

  • It's amazing, but as a fan of things that are just

  • stripped down to either a piano or acoustic guitar and a voice,

  • it was really exciting when I heard you were doing it.

  • And I'm really excited to hear what you do with the title

  • track "Mass Seduction" because I'm having such a hard time

  • with my tiny musical brain imagining

  • how you broke it down.

  • Because that sound sounds like Prince and Bowie had a baby.

  • Oh, thanks, love them.

  • And so how did you--

  • how did you do that one?

  • How did we do any of it?

  • Yeah.

  • Truthfully, we didn't talk about what we're going to do.

  • We just-- I said, hey, can we block out

  • a couple of days in the studio.

  • It was me and Thomas, who's at the grand piano.

  • I was on a couch in the fetal position.

  • And our friend and mix engineer was in the booth.

  • And we would just--

  • Thomas would listen to the song really

  • quickly, go, oh, I got it, not practice anything.

  • Just make sure you have the changes

  • and then we would go in and record two maybe three

  • passes of the song and pick the best one and that's it.

  • That's how it happened?

  • That's-- yeah, it was the quickest recording process

  • I've ever done.

  • It's just like what feels like magic in this moment.

  • When did the ghost walk through the room as they say.

  • And we're going to use that one.

  • It was magic.

  • That was it.

  • It was right.

  • It was just everything was right.

  • Yeah.

  • Well, thanks for letting me ask those inspiration

  • behind the album questions.

  • Totally fine.

  • Well, the inspiration on the album is my other album.

  • The album, yes.

  • Yes.

  • So if we're talking about that then--

  • Yeah, that's easy enough to answer.

  • I'd really [INAUDIBLE].

  • So I want to talk a little bit about guitar

  • because you're such an amazing guitar

  • player, and me and friend on the team,

  • we were geeking out watching some of your greatest

  • little moments.

  • So-- oh, and I just sat with another fellow guitar

  • wizard who doesn't play with a pick, Mr. Lindsey Buckingham.

  • Oh, he's so great.

  • He's amazing, so I dove into his solo career to meet with him.

  • But-- yeah, I just--

  • I guess the question is how do you develop that style where

  • it's different and it's unique, yet you can pretty much

  • do everything.

  • How'd you develop?

  • Thanks.

  • Well, my Uncle Tuck Andress is a brilliant finger style jazz

  • guitar player, so I would grow up--

  • I was on tour with them a lot, and I would watch him play.

  • And he's all finger style.

  • He can play with a pick, but he is just this, like that,

  • all this crazy right hand technique.

  • And so I think that part of it was watching him,

  • and then I also think there's just something

  • genetic in our musculature or something

  • where we'll even do some of the same things.

  • And I think it's not from having watched him,

  • but just we will both--

  • when we play extreme vibrato-- will shake our heads like this

  • as if that's controlling that.

  • And then-- but then I also--

  • I just love music, so I played and--

  • I played bass in metal bands growing up.

  • I played noise bands whereas if your hand isn't

  • bloody by the time you walk off the stage,

  • you did not play well enough.

  • I had Freddie Green jazz phase, just went all over the place

  • with the style and learning different kinds of music.

  • And then the other thing is sometimes just not--

  • the guitar is mysterious to me in a lot of different ways

  • but one of which is that sometimes I just reach

  • for things and I don't know what they're going to sound like.

  • You just kind of decide to jump off the roof

  • and hope that you land on solid ground.

  • Yeah.

  • And if you don't, that's interesting, too.

  • Don't you think that you have to have

  • the technical proficiency and the background

  • to be able to take those leaps?

  • I don't know.

  • As far as guitar playing goes, some of my favorite guitar

  • players are so technically proficient--

  • the Hendrixes and the Marc Ribots or--

  • but there's-- but there's some of my guitar--

  • favorite guitar players are also terrible guitar

  • whatever that maybe a super guitar

  • nerd would go, ooh, he or she can't play,

  • but that's not the point.

  • The point is what are they saying

  • and how does it make you feel.

  • Some of my favorite guitar solos are one note.

  • Argue with the solo and rip it up

  • and start again or argue with Neil Young solo--

  • That's what I was going to say, Neil Young,

  • just riding that note.

  • "Down by the Water."

  • Yeah.

  • [VOCALIZING]

  • That works.

  • That absolutely works.

  • So like anything, it's not about how many notes you play

  • or what you're able to do.

  • It's about what you're able to express.

  • Cool.

  • Well, thank you for taking a few minutes out

  • of your busy schedule--

  • Thank you.

  • To come talk a little music with us.

  • My pleasure.

  • This was fun.

  • Cool.

  • [THEME MUSIC PLAYING]

[THEME MUSIC PLAYING]

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