Self-editing is the way I write. Ten verses of a song and it's finished. Then we start playing it and if I see that it's too long, I'll start cutting.
I lost my innocence with Johnny Cash. I used to watch the 'Johnny Cash Show' on television in Wangaratta when I was about 9 or 10 years old. At that stage I had really no idea about rock n' roll. I watched him, and from that point I saw that music could be an evil thing - a beautiful, evil thing.
The idea of songwriting is a transformative thing, and what I do with songwriting is take situations that are quite ordinary and transform them in some way. Apart from things like the murder ballads, the songs I write, at their core, are quite ordinary human concerns, but the process of writing about them transforms them into something else.
It's an Australian thing to be dismissive. We find that endearing. Americans don't. They believe what you say.
Jean-Claude Van Damme