Logan Lynn (2009)

I was interviewed by an LGBT blog from Peru called “Gay Like You” and the story went live today on their site. You can check it out HERE or read the full transcript just below. Hello, Peru! My gayness knows no bounds. Keep in mind that the questions have been translated to English, so they’ve been cleaned up a bit for this post from the original (which was WAY better to begin with than me trying to speak Spanish! That would have been a very short interview)…


From “Gay Like You” (12/15/2009)

Logan Lynn is a very nice musician and songwriter whose last album “From Pillar to Post” is getting huge attention. In this exclusive interview with GAY LIKE YOU, THE BLOG he tell us a lot of things and concerns from his music to personal stuff and always in his natural style. His recent hit “Bottom your way to the top” is one of the favorites on MTV and also on LOGO, if you don’t know Logan (that would be a shame) we introduce him and invite to add him in your ITUNES right now…

GLY: What do you like about using poetry in your songs?

LL: All of my song lyrics are lifted from notebooks which I am constantly scribbling in. I think of it more like stream of consciousness than poetry, at least during the initial writing process. By the time it’s set to music and made to fit the chords it gets more in line with what could be considered poetry, but I don’t think I’m a poet. I work mostly in observation and introspection and have, over time, developed my songwriting style into what it is today.

GLY: Do you like to be considered an outcast, a misfit, a rebel?

LL: I have always somehow found myself in outcast roles, but at this point in my life I welcome it. It’s the reality, so I’ve learned to embrace it and think that, musically, all of those feelings have helped shape me as an artist and are, at the core, what bring people to my music. Everybody feels far away sometimes, everybody goes through life wanting to fit in, wishing they were apart of something…so, I think people can relate universally to my songs on those levels.

GLY: You were born and grew up in Portland (Oregon), where right now there is a pulsating music scene. How would you consider your own music if you could describe it yourself?

LL: I was actually born in Lubbock, Texas and was essentially raised in Nebraska. I fled the Midwest in 1996 and moved to Portland then. As far as me describing my own music, I think at the root it is Electro-Pop, but on the moody side of the genre. There are also folk music influences in there…on this new record especially, I tried to marry the acoustic with the electric and used elements from all different types of music. Carlos Cortes, who produced the record, is an electro and hip-hop DJ at heart, so that mix of his beats with my melodies makes for a wild ride.

GLY: How you do your see your career after nine years since “Here we go again” from 2000?

LL: Well, in 2000 when “GLEE” came out, no one really understood what I was trying to do. I’m pretty sure they were freaked out by it, confused by the mixed up genres. That all sort-of shifted around 2003 and the early stuff started to really take off around 2006 when I re-released some of those original songs mixed in with 8 new songs for my self-titled release. That record and the videos which coincided led me down the road to where I am today. Back then, I wouldn’t in a million years have thought any of what is happening now would be happening, so it’s cool to be in this place. I’m glad that my earlier work has found a home with people now as well, though it’s strange to have the last decade documented in such a public way. My writing has changed over the last 10 years. The way I view myself and the world has completely changed. I hear those old songs and they are so dark, so hopeless. My music now is still emotional, but it’s not hopeless. As far as my career is concerned, I couldn’t be more pleased with how things are going at the moment. The Dandy Warhols signing me changed my life completely and it’s all just really exciting. I didn’t expect the reaction I’ve gotten over the past few months and since the release, but it’s amazing.

GLY: When some musicians try to steer clear of the term “emo” that you embrace to describe your musical and lyrical heart, what do you feel?

LL: I don’t so much embrace it as I do accept it. I certainly don’t affiliate myself with the word in the traditional sense, so I totally understand bands and artists wanting to shy away from the term. To me, “Emo” is short for “Emotional” which I think my music is, so it fits…Now that there are sub-genres like “Emotronic” I fully get why people have attached that word to me and my work over the years. I’m into it. People who decide they like music based on a label someone has attached to it instead of listening and deciding for themselves are stupid. Fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke.

GLY: Your lyrics are confessional, but how much from your real experience is in there?

LL: I only ever write about my life and the truth surrounding it. I’m not into fiction.

GLY: What class of inspiration do you need to start creating music, any special things, environment, feelings?

LL: Historically, I write when I’m at my lowest. I have been trying to change that and document ALL my feelings as I go, but…I’m just not as inspired when things are going right. So far in my career, my songs have been about love and loss and feeling alone and how fucking complicated it is to be alive. I write what I know about and what I’m going through and, sadly, I spent much of my 20’s strung out on drugs, going through it in the worst way. Things are so much better in my life now, but the songs I’m writing are still about my fears and insecurities in moving through the world as this new person. I put my feelings on paper, then I put it to music and put it out into the world so it leaves me. That’s the process and it seems to be working so far.

GLY: Do you remenber which was the first song you wrote and for who?

LL: I’ve always written songs. My parents have cassette tapes of me as a oddler performing weird freestyle variations of other people’s songs, then as I got older they become songs I wrote myself. I wrote this really embarrassing song called “Growing Up Without You” when I was 11 that I sang at this going-away party for the youth minister at our church, so that was maybe the first one that had its own title. When I was 12 I got really into drugs and Kurt Cobain and wrote a song about Windowpane and eating out of cans that I played on the guitar at this Christian talent show and recorded it in my cousin’s studio.That was when I got the bug, but I didn’t do anything about it for another 6 years or so after that. I was 18 when I recorded my demo “This Is Folk Techno”, some of which was re-recorded and turned into “GLEE”. That was just after my first real relationship and breakup and it sent me down the relationship confessional path that I’ve been navigating ever since.

GLY: Do you make songs for guys you like?

LL: I used to, though I’ve always made songs for me, to process my feelings. That has, in times past, had much to do with guys I like or people I’m involved with. When I was younger I had a really hard time communicating my true feelings with people after growing up in the church and I think that had a lot to do with why I started making music in the first place. It was, like…the only time I could really be honest back then or something. My attempts to communicate through song never really worked out in my personal life, so I eventually started getting real and being honest with myself and everybody around me. It’s been a whole lot easier ever since that all shifted. At this point I’ve spent years lining up the two so what you see is what you get. It’s been transformative and liberating.

GLY: Can we define your music as electro-pop?

LL: Yes. That works. I think it might sometimes confuse people about what they’re actually getting into, though. I’m all over the place.

GLY: What are your favorites subjects to compose about?

LL: Pain and suffering…regret and loneliness…happy stuff like that, mostly.

GLY: Right now we can see a few singers out of the closet in a more free enviroment to be who they are, do you think that (gay) artists will be more visible and not hide their real feelings and thoughts?

LL: Yeah…I think people are finally starting to care less and just listen to the music, which is cool. I can only speak for myself, but I’ve never hidden who I am in the media since this all started. That seems like some really hard bullshit I didn’t sign up for. I don’t have any people at my label telling me to be anything other than myself, which is great.

GLY: Since 2000 till now your music has evolved for good and you got great reviews with each album and performance, which album do you think is your best?

LL: I’ve never made a record like “From Pillar To Post” before. It is my best by far. It was incredible to get to come into The Dandy Warhols’ studio and do what I wanted to do with the songs but couldn’t have otherwise done. I feel like I made the record I wanted to and it turned out how I wanted it to. I’m glad we took our time with it. It worked out.

GLY: How many changes are we going to see in Logan’s music?

LL: Well, I’ve been working with a new producer Y-Tron on a new record for next year and it’s a bit of a departure from the one I just released. I’m really busy making new stuff. I’ve been inspired lately, so I’ve thrown myself into new work.

GLY: One of your favorite themes is sexuality, tell us how did you discover your attracion by boys, did you find support in your family and friends?

LL: I was raised in the church, so when those feelings started happening it was very upsetting to me and to my family. It was a rough journey to get from there to here, but we’re all here now together, so all’s well that ends well. I do tend to write about sex but it’s mostly about my confusion surrounding it.

GLY: What I can see from your images and lyris is a very honest and free way to live and enjoy sex but could we define that your vision is about pansexualism or bisexualism, this last very popular with straight guys that we can call men that have sex with other men?

LL: I try and put out imagery and sounds that can be accessed by anyone, whatever their situation or orientation is. I explore things in my art that I don’t necessarily explore in real life. It’s an outlet for me, and I’m glad it can be one for other people as well…gay, straight, bi, pansexual or otherwise.

GLY: I read you are related from your dad’s side to the great Johnny Cash, and like him you didn’t take singing lessons and you learned to play the piano on the piano he learned on.

LL: I’m not related to Jonny Cash, but my grandmother did give him piano and singing lessons when he was a child and I did learn to play on that same piano. That’s the connection there. He was a very emotional songwriter and didn’t really hold anything back.I admire that kind of transparency in one’s life and art. I’m pretty sure that’s the only thing we have in common, tho. Our music is not similar otherwise.

GLY: Everybody has a dark side but I know your music is not dark but very moody, how Logan in the real life, what do you like / what do you not like?

LL: I’m made up of different parts…some light, some dark. I try and put myself out there as I am so there are no surprises. What you see is what you get, take it or leave it. In my life I like people who are on a similar journey. I want to be free, not pinned down by fear or some idea that my life needs to look a certain way in order for me to be a part of it. In real life I’m still very much figuring shit out.

GLY: You spent quite a time getting to know your followers and fans in your network and trying to find out not only what kind of music they want, but how they want all that to look and it helped you to make your music very well known. How much influence do you get from your fans, do you take their own stories or experiences to put in your lyrics?

LL: I haven’t done that, no. I write songs about my personal life, pretty much exclusively.

GLY: What are the gay icons, artists, songwriters that influence in your music?

LL: I’m influenced by much of the world at large, not limited to gay icons. I have a lot of respect for gay filmmakers like John Waters, Todd Haynes and Gus Van Sant; as far as the gay music world goes, I love bands like The Gossip, Scream Club, Gravy Train!!!, Bob Mould, The Presets…My influences really come more from female singer/songwriters than anything else. That, coupled with years of DJ-ing dance music, make up for the origins of my sound today.

GLY: What do you think is the future of the music with newcomer artists using much more the network to make known their music?

LL: I think the future is upon us currently and anybody who doesn’t get on board and get hip to the fact that things have changed within the music industry is going to be left behind. There’s been a meteoric rise of indies into the mainstream…bands on small labels are getting international coverage and selling out stadiums. It’s nuts, man! I think that all of the old rules no longer apply and anything is possible now. If you have good songs and a way to get those songs out to listeners, there’s no reason why an independent shouldn’t find the same sort of success that a band or artist signed to a major label can find.

GLY: Your new song “bottom your way to the top” has to be about your last long time relationship that ended, how much did it affect to you personal and professionally?

LL: It’s been really rough. I have a dual thing going on in my life and have for a little while where I’m having super high highs professionally at the same time as these super low lows are happening in my personal life. It’s strange. I try and stay focused on all the good things that are happening, but it’s hard when you love someone so much and just can’t make it work. I’m still broken-hearted about the whole thing. It’s fresh.

GLY: How much of a perfectionist are you?

LL: I’m way more of a perfectionist now than I ever was before. I’ve got a mind for quality control now that I made this new record the legitimate way. There’s really no going back at this point.

GLY: Were all your relationships ended with chemicals and in a good way?

LL: Yeah, after 16 years on the party train I finally quit doing cocaine and drinking in the beginning of 2008. I almost died…it wasn’t pretty. As far as ending in a good way, I have been able to find success in staying clean and moving forward. Unfortunately, during the 16 year bender, I burned a lot of bridges and made a huge mess which I am still cleaning up and will be trying to make right for some time to come. Addiction is really fucked up. I’m glad I got out. It almost didn’t work out this way.

GLY: That’s great you got clean and have courage to tell us you were into drugs but recovered. You are single and available and that seems to be weird for you, but I guess you have more time for yourself and do the things as you want, is not the single state the perfect way to be?

LL: It does seem weird to me…probably just because I’ve been in a relationship for the past 6 and a half years and only just found myself alone in the house for the first time this after he moved out this past weekend. I’m sure it will be fine, but it is taking some getting used to.

GLY: Did you try to market you as an gay artist?

LL: Initially, I built my fanbase up within the gay community online, then on TV via MTV’s gay channel “Logo” and different LGBT festivals I played like “Folsom Street Fair”. It wasn’t so much a marketing move as it was me trying to find similar people who I thought might find a connection with my tunes. It ended up working out way better than I could have ever imagined.

GLY: Certainly gay community responded to your music very well. Did you feel less alone and more a part of the community?

LL: Yes, it’s been great to be so welcomed by the gay press and the community. I love that other people are connecting with the songs and me as a result. It definitely has made me feel less alone and like there are tons of other people out there feeling just as crazy and fucked up as I am.

GLY: How do you feel about success and fame? Is it something that you can deal with? Is it something you want more of or is easier to handle when you interact with people in network and they see you are like one of them?

LL: My goal has been to get my music out to as many people as possible. I love that people and press are digging it and that MTV plays my videos and all of that equals out to people recognizing me or knowing who I am. I’m into it…but it has taken some getting used to as it has started happening more.

GLY: What do you think about Obama and gay rights, something big is gonna happens like a federal law?

LL: In our country everybody is supposed to have the same rights as each other, no one person given more or less because of who they are. Those are the fundamentals of the United States and I can’t imagine that the laws going against those principals will stick for very much longer. It’s an uphill battle, but things have changed so much in the last 20 years. It gives me hope for the next 20, though I don’t think it will take that long to see major change.

GLY: If you would find the man of your life would get married and have children?

LL: Yes.

GLY: What is the kind of man that you like, what values and skills does he need to have?

LL: I don’t know what kind of man I like…I know what kind of man I don’t like, tho, so that’s a start. I would love to meet some kind, smart, funny man who wanted nothing more than to be nice to me and go on the journey with. That sounds magical.

GLY: Are you an activist? Do you think an artist needs to speak out and have social responsibility?

LL: I think artists should do whatever they want. I don’t feel some personal responsibility to represent anything or anyone but myself. With me, I have a hard time keeping quiet about stuff. I’m sure that alienates some people. To which, I say “Good.”

GLY: I want one day for you to come to Peru and play a concert, it would be fantastic, have you ever heard about my country? You are welcome here.

LL: That would be amazing! Count me in. Let’s make it happen.

GLY: Finally, what would you like to tell GAY LIKE YOU readers and fans?

LL: Thanks for checking out my music! My new record is available on iTunes now or through my website here: Follow me on Twitter and let’s be friends on Myspace, Facebook, Dlist, YouTube, Etc.!

Category: Interviews, Music, New Releases, News, Press, Reviews, Uncategorized

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