Friday, May 25, 2007
Pitchfork reports: Andrew Bird discusses the Midwest
Be sure to check out Pitchfork for the entire ANDREW BIRD interview, but I liked how they asked him to pontificate on being a Midwesterner.
Here's an excerpt:
Pitchfork: You guys all live in the Midwest, but your music would fit in slightly more "hip" places, like New York or Los Angeles. Is there anything about the place you live that directly relates to the music you make?
Andrew Bird: Definitely. Especially getting out to the rural Midwest. I remember talking to a friend of mine, deciding whether to move to New York, but if I moved to New York I would probably be making much more dense music. I haven't even gotten as far as I want to go, in terms of unfolding songs. I've been hearing something in my head that I've been too overstimulated to have the patience to unfold.
Pitchfork: That's ironic, because rock or pop music-- the medium you're working in-- is generally known for its immediacy.
Andrew Bird: Right. There's always a tension between wanting to write a really concise, instant gratification type song that gets under your skin the first time you hear it, and wanting to really stretch out. I think it's a healthy tension. I think I need to, in the future, go further into textural stuff. The original question was about the Midwest, and the landscape. But Chicago and Minneapolis are the two communities I've been involved with. Minneapolis-- there are a lot of really creative people up there. I'm really enjoying it. Chicago as well, but Chicago is so familiar to me. So am I an advocate for the Midwest? I don't know [laughs]
Pitchfork: Well, a lot of other major urban centers, especially New York and L.A., are artistic destinations, places people go, whereas a city like Chicago is where a lot of people come from.
Andrew Bird: I do think people [in Chicago] are making art maybe for different reasons. That's how I've always felt. People move to L.A. waiting for something to happen to them. It takes some initiative. I think people in Chicago, or Minneapolis, I've always appreciated the sort of anonymity of it, a humbleness to the work ethic.