Songwriters on Songwriting, LIVE: Interviews by Paul Zollo - Th 6/25 JOE HENRY

Join author Paul Zollo for Episode 4 of 'Songwriters on Songwriting, LIVE' Thursday night June 25, 8pm Pacific with Grammy-Winning producer, songwriter, and prose writer JOE HENRY! The Songwriting School of Los Angeles is proud to present this outstanding series, bringing Paul's beloved book of interviews to life, on-campus and online.

Joe Henry is a songwriter, Grammy-winning producer, author, and beacon of warm, illuminating insight on the human condition. The Songwriting School is deeply honored to welcome him. To view Joe Henry's impressive discography as Grammy-winning producer, which includes essential artists from Emmylou Harris to Bonnie Raitt, Billy Bragg to Michelle Ndgeocello, Elvis Costello to Aimee Mann, check out his website.


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Paul Zollo himself writers this about our distinguished guest, Joe Henry:

If Kurt Weill worked with Willie Dixon, what you’d get might be close to songs Joe Henry writes. Although the songs of songwriters who become producers for hire sometimes suffer, his haven’t. His time in the trenches making miraculous albums with artists such as Mose Allison, Aimee Mann, Elvis Costello, Solomon Burke, Madonna and Ornette Coleman seems only to have emboldened and enriched his own music.

Many of his songs marry emblematic T.S. Eliot-tinged poetry with the organic soul of Son House. These are songs alive with finely etched human details, revolving around mythic, Biblical elegance, the spacious cadences of Beat poetry, and the reverent rhythms of American folk and blues. His tracks are dimensional; engaging our aural depth perception by mixing close-up, clean sounds with mysteries in the distance, like Lightnin’ Hopkins playing “Lonesome Road” a capella at a truckstop as a poker game transpires nearby. Lyrically, his work’s as solid as a Muddy Waters classic, where no words are wasted, like folk songs smoothed and polished for decades like stones in the sea.

Born on December 2, 1960 in Charlotte, North Carolina, he grew up in Detroit, attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and subsequently relocated to New York City in 1985. He’s since released a chain of amazing album, each a little different, but all containing beautifully inspired songwriting and wonderful productions, including Talk of Heaven, Murder of Crows, Shuffletown, Short Man's Room , Kindness of the World, Fireman's Wedding (an EP), Trampoline, Fuse (mixed with Daniel Lanois and T-Bone Burnett) Scar (featuring the late great Ornette Coleman) Tiny Voice.

Of Blood from Stars, released in 2009, Paul Zollo wrote, in American Songwriter, “A marriage of melancholy and joy permeates the whole album, crystallized by the line `a funeral in the sun.’ That the record was recorded in five days (and mixed in six), shows that these tracks are not Frankensteins of endless overdubs and experiments, but the consequence of musicians playing together, laying down songs all at once, as it was always done, enlivened by interactive camaraderie and the euphoric catharsis of music itself. Listen to Blood from Stars sequentially from start to finish, and experience a journey through exultation and sorrow, through what’s ancient and what’s modern, that is unlike any ride you’ve been on before. “

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