I can remember early harmonies and early rock from my very beginnings. Like any other kid, I listened to a lot of radio. I listened to Sam Cooke, the Everlys, Fats Domino and that was my basis. I hated country when I was a kid because I could do it. I could imitate it so well. Now I do enjoy singing it and writing it. My singing style is a lack of style. I always sing what the song calls for and I guess I’m lucky because I’ve got such variety.
Free expression and lack of restraint has always been part of my musical upbringing, from the very beginning.
Entertainers are just like anybody else. Although the public thinks they tend to hide themselves from the public’s eye, it is actually other people who hide away from entertainers.
It was time to try new things, and we couldn’t as Bread because we were expected to have a certain sound and sing a certain type of song.
- As to why he left Bread
It wasn’t the people that broke up Bread. It was the music industry. They perpetuated a trip that wasn’t naturally ours and so created dissention within the group.
Music is something I have always loved. If you do a good job, satisfy yourself, all the other stuff, such as success and fame, are by-products. Most people are going into it backwards. They want money and fame, but I’ve lived on both sides of the coin and I’ve found that money doesn’t buy happiness.
Even untalented musicians, if they love their work, will do reasonably well. Whether you sell music or hairspray, if you feel comfortable and sound comfortable, it will sell.
Believe that if you want longevity, you’ve got to do different things. I’m a gambler...
Rock has given me money and awards, but it hasn’t made me content with myself. My main goal is to get into serious composition and leave some good music behind.
Now that I can do all this, I want to know how I’m doing it.
Songs I have poured my heart into have never become hits, but this Oscar song, I spent only 15 minutes on and it won for best movie song. It’s based on popularity, commercial sales, but this song has been good to me, monetarily that is.
There’s no way of describing what happens when you are writing a song. It all comes from the air and you have to keep on playing it without breaking the inspirational period.
You have to let it all flow out before you can write it down but I don’t write it down. I use a tape recorder. Everything else that follows is duplication. I sometimes wonder what Bach and Beethoven would have been like if they had used tape recorders. They must have had super memories to go back and play what they had just composed or to take the time to note it all on paper.
Rolling Stone really killed me for winning that award. I hadn’t shaved in three days and I looked like a freak in my brand new, only tuxedo, but I don’t think they realized it was a goof.
- Response to winnning an Oscar
This is the official website of Jimmy Griffin, who passed away on January 11, 2005.