Sam Phillips update!
Wooooooooo hooooooooo! Here's the best news I've heard in a long time: Sam Phillips, my favorite singer/songwriter in the world ( A Boot and a Shoe was my favorite record of 2004), has begun work on her newest album! She has this to say at her official Web site:
Today I am starting another record. The working title is "Will you trade me this for a tank of gas?" The question glaring at me like the desert sun first thing in the morning is why make a record? Most things I hear are uninspired, or career motivated at best. I don't know why. I have always been interested in what shakes, breaks, takes you off the road, catches you off guard, makes you dream with your eyes open. There are songs and paintings and books that have eclipsed everything while throwing light on a world that is real only when, as I think William Blake said, we see through and not with the eyes. There are clues to the sublime. Signs. Signals. I don't understand them, but I can't live without them. I don't think any of us are meant to. When I started writing songs I tried to push all of that away so that I could change the world, but it wouldn't be pushed. What Bob Dylan started in pop music years ago was misunderstood and turned to stone by so many writers who admired him. You just can't go very far with stone, it is too heavy. That's okay. I found out within a few painful years of trying to change the world with my songs, that I needed to change. The deep, true changes weren't going to happen unless I stepped back, fell down, got back up, shook off the humiliation of failed control and took in the signs, clues and wonders that are underneath and above all of this feeble culture.
I have been collecting things for this record for a while. Last year I found the group of musicians I wanted to play onstage with. I fell in love with them when we played and when I saw them first thing in way too early morning as we dragged ourselves to the next city, or when we all boarded the bus after a show to gloat or lick our wounds. I saw them being frisked in the airport, all dressed up at Carnegie Hall, out on the town after hours, in beautiful hotels with marble baths , in seedy motels with plastic sinks, crossing the boarder in the middle of the night, staring at the local staring contest while waiting to do a sound check at the Sons of Herman Hall in Texas, prying the secret recipe of a grilled lettuce salad out of a chef in a mountain town, weary after long bus rides, crying with laughter. We were taken out to crazy good dinners, tried to find eatable food at truck stops and airports, ate road side BBQ with exquisite champagne someone had given to us and sampled coffee joints all over the country. This week I have convinced them all to record with me.