Saturday, March 02, 2013

Q: I’ve read in the past that you don’t like the word “covers.”

RLJ: “Covers,” I guess, is a word used only with writers to indicate a lesser work. Your real work is what you write. We don’t describe Sinatra or Ella [Fitzgerald] or Tony Bennett as doing covers. We know [they] don’t write, and in fact we don’t even think about it. It’s not discussed. But that’s jazz. The singer-songwriter genre was always sticky, and that was why from the beginning of my career I did “covers” and did them on the same record as my own compositions, to try to make the point that a song is a song. At the heart of it, I‘m such an AM radio American girl. It’s all my music. And The Rolling Stones did covers. It was before the sacrosanct Dylan aftershock, and I think I thought I could expand the genres, keep the walls from closing, and make a place for songwriters to sing and singers to be respected the same as the singer /songwriter.

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