But he did sing me about six songs over the phone while I interviewed him this morning.

He was left all alone afterhours in the office of his Tried and True Music in Austin, just killing a little time before he was out to go see Guy Clark, actually, and so he was in a pretty personable mood. Talked about drifting on nitrous with Pete Stampfel from the Holy Modal Rounders after treatment by student dentists in New York, about how the salt air curls his wife’s hair on the beach in Belize and about how he—unlike Guy—doesn’t pull a lot of songs off bar napkins anymore. In between stories, he’d sing me new stuff and old—one called “One True Love” about three folks in a bar that he’s working on, one he wrote for his wife, one by Johnny Cash, one or two more I will have to re-discover upon transcribing. He sounds just like he did on the old albums, at least through my little phone. File this with the ultra-rare MP3s of Nick Cave reluctantly laughing at my jokes. Also Tried and True is pretty adorable: no e-mail, website with a phone number on top, and at least one lady there who will affectionately refer to you as an ‘unindicted co-conspirator’ within 45 seconds of picking up the phone. This is also for that S.F. WEEKLY piece.

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