What piece of art changed your life? How did it affect you?
The paintings of Francisco Goya—especially “Saturn Devouring One of His Sons”—are truly remarkable. Saturn is frightening and furious. His grip on the body, his physicality, and his eyes are pure terror. None of Goya’s contemporaries worked with this kind of genius.
I first saw his work as an exchange student, at the Prado Museum in Madrid. I was 20 years old and had been to the Met in NYC, but had never seen a painting so powerful. Its force really was the beginning of my learning how to look at art. The experience and value of putting myself in front of a master's work began right then and there. I also love Goya's influence in the work of Manet, another one of my favorite painters. Goya and Manet have often been muses for my songwriting in work such as “Matador,” “Spanish Town,” and “Spanish Blood.”
Legendary New York rocker Garland Jeffreys has just released his first disc of new material in 13 years, The King of In Between. Produced by Larry Campbell, it's a rootsy and soulful affair that reminds me how much I've missed Jeffreys, who'll be at the Rams Head in Annapolis on June 12th.