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Grant Lee Phillips' comments on Virginia Creeper

"I liked the metaphor, a slow but persistent vine, ever weaving, ever climbing - like a melody. I also like the idea of words as vines, songs as vines and as a symbol for my life, weaving persistently. It may not appear that there's any movement going on, but nevertheless there is. There's also something vaguely antique-ish about the title, which suits my obsession with all things decaying and the ghosts that have come to dwell in my songs."
Source: Biography on cookingvinyl.com, 2004

"I didn't want to approach it with excessive overdubs and I couldn't have made this album alone, by myself. I'd done that with my last record, Mobilize. This time, the songs had a simplicity that would best be served by taking them into a studio with feeling, responsive musicians."
Source: Biography on cookingvinyl.com, 2004

About Cindy Wasserman: "We found this blend in our voices, I never had to say a word, we just sang... There's shared love of Merle Haggard, Ray Price, Gram Parsons. We could sing that stuff for hours, did and still do..."
Source: Biography on cookingvinyl.com, 2004

Q: So what's special about this new album, Virginia Creeper?
A: I'd venture to say this is the most unguarded and personal album I've put forth to date. It probably has certain things in common with some of the old Grant Lee Buffalo albums, in that it's often stripped back to just a voice and a guitar or a fiddle. It's an ensemble effort though, with a number of musicians who I felt were able to respond on their feet, without rehearsing for weeks on end. We went for it, over the course of about three days. All these songs were cut live, with just an added dash of overdubs on the fourth and fifth day. And there it was. The production in this case had more to do with the casting and the method, and not so much with the gratuitous bells and whistles that accompany most albums these days.
Q: There are a lot of girls' names in the song titles…
A: Yeah, it's just one of those things. It was never premeditated, it just turned out that way. Then you stand back at the end and go: wow, this reads like a little black book. Or maybe a little yellow book.
Source: Uncut, Interview by Chris Roberts, 2 April 2004

Q: You reference the Mona Lisa. Ever actually seen it?
Yes I have… I got within an arm's length of it once, my route blocked by other sight-seers. It's kind of a wild thing! And so famous. But since I wrote that song there's this Julia Roberts movie, Mona Lisa Smile, so that kinda makes me look lame. Hey, next thing you know someone'll be painting a picture called Mona Lisa and hanging it in The Louvre! How lame will my song titles look then? Source: Uncut, Interview by Chris Roberts, 2 April 2004

"That's the oldest song on there, it dates back to early 2003 - around the time the US was dipping its toes into Iraq. Calamity Jane is largely a metaphor for the gun-toting, trigger-happy administration we have in place. But it's an ever-so-subtle statement, hopefully, thus allowing me to walk through the raindrops and showers of ash. I've blown my cover in this interview now though, haven't I? I'm pretty sure George Bush is an avid subscriber to Uncut." Source: Uncut, Interview by Chris Roberts, 2 April 2004

"The basic bones of the story had been passed to me by my mom. It’s essentially the life of my great-grandmother. It was a big part of the family heritage and a source of pride for my grandmother and my mom. It meant that there were a whole lot of Indian busts around the house - sort of like the native version of My Big Fat Greek Wedding."
Source: newsreview.com, March 2004

Q: You’ve covered Gram Parsons' “Hickory Wind” as the album finale. Are you a big Parsons fan?
A: It's striking how many musicians are influenced by Gram Parsons and The Flying Burrito Brothers, even if they don't know it. By way of country music trickling down into rock music. Some of this accounts for bands like The Eagles, and other things that don't represent the best that Parsons had to offer, by any means, but for me I found a simpatico spirit in Gram when I began appreciating country. He had a desire to synthesise and juxtapose different musical elements. I think he was a bit of a post-modern artist himself, in his own time. And a great story-teller, and a self-made character.
Source: Uncut, Interview by Chris Roberts, 2 April 2004