The World Doesn’t Need Any More Songs

I read an interview with Bob Dylan a while back where he was asked about songwriting. Dylan’s immediate response was “the world has enough songs”. He said the world doesn’t need any more songs “but a person who has something to say, that’s a different story”.

People often ask me how I write songs, but the question I would like to ask you first is: What do you really have to say?

Ultimately, I really don’t care about your technique or your usage of metaphor. I don’t care about your ability to communicate emotion with a melody. I, and the world, don’t really care about your songs unless we, at least, feel like you have something to say.

So, do you?

  1. Ken said:

    My God! I felt the revelation jumping off the screen! Thanks!

  2. Your songs are never just songs. They are always stories; always meaningful. I sat in the audience at your show in Southern California and watched while everyone was captivated. Not by a light show, not by amazing sounds, stage antics or costumes…by the songs. By the truth of message. Keep up the great work, doing it real unlike most artists these days. Thanks for breathing life into music.

  3. If this was FaceBook I would have clicked "Like" a hundred times…

  4. It's always amazing how songs change for better or worse when someone else covers it. In your song 'How He Loves' I have heard the phrase 'sloppy wet kiss' sung as 'passionate kiss'. Personally, I like sloppy because it's more accurate in expressing the vulnerability and awkward intimacy involved in worship. Thanks for writing that song. Good example of having something to say.

  5. Having watched your show in Folsom, CA, a week and a half ago, I can say with certainty both you and Gungor "have something to say." I'm thrilled there are Christian artists like the both of you who are honest, creative, and who obviously stretch yourselves artistically and don't take the easy road and sell out. What stood out to me during the show was I noticed, on multiple occasions, that you (and Gungor) absolutely and truly FELT and EXPERIENCED what you were singing. Sitting in a Starbucks late Friday afternoon, trying to catching up on work e-mails and related busy stuff so I could get on home to my family, I heard Dylan's "Highway 61" over their music system. I'm not an expert at his music by any means, but I was struck by his sharp wit, his lyrics and observations, even his sense of humor. Obviously he was (still is I'm sure) an intelligent man, but he was PASSIONATE. Those two things combined = SOMETHING TO SAY. Thanks again.

  6. Jason said:

    I was pretty much just left aggravated by this post. Me, Hell yeah I care when someone is able to communicate their emotions to other people…I guess maybe I don't understand what it is that you are trying to say…with this post,or who and what it's directed at. That being said Dylan has had some pretty amazing things to say over the years, but then again he has been known to write plenty of songs that I feel like he was just having a good time as an artist fooling with imagery and just having fun. i.e. Talking World War Blues. I have recently been watching my friend Chris Jones, (a dude who went to school with you I guess) he has just been challenging the way I think about worship, and music and life… So i am not really trying to stir up the waters or something, but you are a great artist, and so you answer, from your perspective what is the diff. between having something to say, and an emotion being conveyed. Chris said you were a straight shooter. I value both, and uh…yeah, I value musical ability, or else i wouldn't even listen to music then…you dig.. case in point, Stars of the lid.. and band i words.

  7. Adam said:

    I get what you are saying and I agree. What draws me to an artist or a band is the sense that there is something inside them trying to get out. The most personal is the most universal. BTW i sort of hate that people are changing the lyrics to your song to make it less gross. I know you are prob fine with it but I'm not gonna do it. Its sloppy all the way.

  8. Jeremy said:

    This reminds me of a quote by Mark Hollis from Talk Talk, "Before you play two notes learn how to play one note – and don't play one note unless you have a reason to play it."

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