The very first song I ever wrote was from a place of intense, raw adolescent lustful insanity. The first line said, "I wanna love so deep my veins swell with it / Til it hurts so good and I can't get rid of it / Makes my whole body strain just to have a little bit / Give it to me, give it to me." Diaries from that time period were cringe-worthy to say the least. Around then I wrote a love letter to my crush under the pseudonym "Blackbird" only to have it returned to sender because I PUT MY RETURN ADDRESS ON IT. Wow, 11 year old Jenni. Just wow.
Lust was a comfortable theme as hormones continued to rage through high school. The album I recorded and sold for an Econ project included such favorites as "All Kinds of Woman" and "Under My Skin" which says, "Thinking of you makes me thirsty / I wanna taste you til I drink you dry."
Then I fled California, not realizing how much better it is than everywhere else. I was only about a month into college when John died, and then I didn't write anything for a year or so. Then it was all I wrote about. Now we're on the eighth November after that one. Jesus.
Old habits die hard. I like to think that the lust-related songs I wrote about in late college and after graduation had a little more of a sense of humor to them. "He says he like my pretty eyes and the messages they send / but I'm pretty sure it was my thick thighs that got him in the end." Haha, I think that's funny at least! I got some laughs the most recent time I performed Call Me Baby. And I'm still with that guy.
I guess I return to sex in my writing because I know it's interesting. It's always been an effective channel for both passion and self-deprecation. Depression has been a psychological mainstay since I first started writing songs back in the adolescent days but I've always avoided writing about it directly since it seems like such a boring topic. I'm sad and despondent for no reason!!! Blaaaaahhh! I was listening to Jackson Galaxy's audiobook (he's the star of My Cat From Hell on Animal Planet and also a singer/songwriter…I love him so much don't judge me) and he's talking about all of his struggles with drugs and alcohol and living in a warehouse with no bathroom and I was like jeez, that's tortured artist to the max. What's my damn excuse for feeling shitty about life? So Stay Out All Night is the first song dealing with the tendency to stay in bed and avoid speaking to other human beings for no reason whatsoever.
Like many other artists of various kinds, I'm perpetually convinced that the most recent thing I made will be the last thing I'm ever capable of making--the last time the muse strikes. History seems to prove otherwise, but if it is true, at least I exorcised this familiar demon.