Q&A April 2012, Part IV
5/12/2012 (updated 5/12/2012)

As a lurker on your internet discussion list, I followed a thread a couple months ago with regard to 'Down Where the Drunkards Roll':

"We may have discussed this before: I was rewatching the BBC4 show Songwriters' Circle from last year yesterday (with RT, Suzanne Vega and Loudon Wainwright III) and noticed a lyric change in Down Where The Drunkards Roll that I think I was subconsciously aware of but that hadn't properly registered before. In the line "You can be Lord Jesus / All the world will understand", he now leaves out the word "Lord". From the emphatic way he sang the line, it did not sound like an accidental omission, so presumably this is a conscious decision which I would guess arose from his conversion to Islam shortly after writing the song. Checking various Youtube versions, there is no "Lord" in other 2008-2010 performances. However, at least in 1990 he was still singing "Lord Jesus", and that's how it appears on Beesweb...Do we know when/why he made the change?"

What say you? Thanks in advance for your kind response. Kay Brown

There is no religious angle to this. I put the 'Lord' in originally to scan better, and eventually found it a bit arch and clunky, so I do without. It's not about Jesus, it's about someone who thinks they are Jesus.

Could you please share details on your recent World Premiere performance of 'Interview with Ghosts'? How was the material received? How did you settle on the paranormal theme? How does the premise parallel with your belief system? When can we expect the complete song cycle to debut? Thanks in advance for your kind response. Kay Brown

It went well, full marks to the wonderful students at Idyllwild Arts Academy. Very nice to have 2 sold out shows and 2 opportunities to play these pieces. The whole programme was terrific, with a Steve Reich piece, a John Cage premiere - friends who came really enjoyed the whole thing, which is great testament for an evening of 'new' classical music. I stumbled on the theme for 'Interviews' on the internet. I certainly believe in ghosts, although it's hard to say whether the transcriptions the songs are based on are real or contrived. As for making it into a longer piece, I don't know. The source material gets repetitious after a while, so I'll try to expand it if it adds something to what's already there.

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