Tuesday, 01 April 2008
Self awareness might be the ultimate end goal of psychoanalysis, but for songwriters it’s not always a good thing. In fact, the pop music canon is littered with artists who created great art because, not in spite of, their lack of insight into their own personal oddness. Consider Daniel Johnston or Wesley Willis. Sure, both had some mental health issues to deal with, but there’s little denying that their songwriting succeeded mostly because they didn’t realize that writing songs about superheroes and McDonalds was outside of the range of normal songwriting topics. Take Ol’ Dirty Bastard, a man whose outrageously oversized persona couldn’t have been contrived, or think of the Shaggs, the ‘60s sister trio who played out of tune and wrote songs about their pets. These are artists who simply can’t help but make music that completely reflects every ...