I never know how to describe my show:
It’s mostly mellow, except when it’s not. It’s about heartbreak, except when it’s about feeling good. It’s folksy, but in the way a folk show is and sometimes not at all. It’s pop-ish, but in a way that doesn’t alienate an older audience. Sometimes it’s about sex. Or addiction. Or God. Or trains. It’s always about California, but that’s not obvious. Sometimes it’s river music, but more often it’s ocean. It’s a garden, but some days better tended than others and more of a wild garden than manicured. I say “Music to grow by,” but I don’t really know what that means to people. Music to grow by like the sad songs are building character out there in audience-land? (“If this music doesn’t kill you, it’ll make you stronger”?) Music to listen to while you’re out planting strawberries and delphiniums? Music to grow dope by? I don’t think too much about it, but I hope what I play inspires a visceral reaction in people: a sharp intake of breath as that one line hits them just so, a smile when they recognize a song they love, a laugh for some of the funnier songs I play, a subtle groove when the beat demands – anything so that they tune in for a moment, forget the music’s only on for the background noise, get the sense that I’m playing the show for them, even if they know that’s silly, that I don’t even know them. But not so much that they start stalking me.
In academic terms: music that acknowledges and amplifies the common human experiences. With a mellow, folksy, organic vibe. As part of the eternal longing for some sort of grace. Without being too serious about it.