Jenny Lewis and her stellar new album
FOAM: Your new solo album is called Acid Tongue and the cover art is an LSD blotter. Are you into psychedelics?
Jenny Lewis: No, I’m too nervous for that. I have had one psychedelic experience, but it was when I was 14. I wasn’t dosed, although I told my parents that I was. They knew something was up.
FOAM: You must have had so many crazy experiences growing up in L.A. Is that why you write about Angeleno culture so much?
JL: I have. Like acting when I was a child, doing commercials, waiting in line at clubs, getting stuck in traffic, breathing in the smog, living next to a car dealership, all of these images go into my songs. I’m so inspired by L.A.
FOAM: Since you’ve been on both sides, which industry is more evil, film or music?
JL: They’re about the same: pretty bad. Music is less daunting because you have a little bit more control of the product, whereas if you’re an actress you’re at the mercy of the other people working on the film.
FOAM: Isn’t it scarier making a record though? I mean—it’s all on you!
JL: Sure it is! But it’s also very liberating. If the music sucks then you finally realize it’s you that sucks.
FOAM: Well, that’s certainly not the case with you. And you have amazing musical friends like M. Ward, Elvis Costello and your boyfriend Jonathan Rice on this record, so that must make you feel a bit more secure.
JL: It doesn’t necessarily make me feel more secure, but collaborating is one of the true joys of playing music. I feel really good about this record, the way we all hit it off. We tracked it so quickly, live in the studio, so I didn’t have time to freak out.
FOAM: Any idea what you’ll be wearing when you take these new songs out on the road? You’ve definitely become a fashion icon…
JL: I think I’ll do it “come as you are” this time, but who knows? Maybe halfway through the tour I’ll revert back to gold sequins or something. I love gaudiness onstage, not so much in real life.
FOAM: Do you ever look out in the audience and see a bunch of Jenny Lewises?
JL: Yeah, but it’s usually me from the previous year. It’s really touching though, even if they can’t keep up with me.
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