Jeff Tweedy Opens Up On Writing Memoir, His Creative Motivation

"I end up sharing a lot of things that people think are vulnerable."

December 14, 2018

Jeff Tweedy has never been afraid to open up. Part of that is simply due to his upbringing.

We sat down with Tweedy prior to his Live From Studio X performance at Subterranean where he spoke with Marty Lennartz about his memoir Let's Go (So We Can Get Back).

When asked about his ability to open up so well in the book, Tweedy responded,

"Being a baby in the birth order of my family and kind of an older child because my older siblings were gone by the time I really have memories.  I was exalted in our family household so I think this ingrained an idea in me that people are really interested in what I have to say. I end up sharing a lot of things that people think are vulnerable. I think because of the aforementioned weird birth order thing, I assumed everyone shared those things and I'm kind of struck by the fact that they don't."

As a result, Tweedy didn't have any issues speaking about difficult topics such as his drug addiction. "One of the ways you stay healthy is to be open and honest about your life," he said.

For all that he went through, Tweedy doesn't attribute his suffering to his ability to make art. It comes from work ethic.

"I like working. I never understand that aspect as a selling point of living a rock and roll lifestyle. This notion that you could be in a rock band and not have to work, that seemed boring," he said.

It's no coincidence that Tweedy put out the book right before he released his latest solo record WARM. The two act as companion pieces to one another.

"I was finishing the record and the book in roughly the same time period," Tweedy revealed.

It's a personal time in Tweedy's life perhaps best reflected in the way he presents the songs on his latest record. Instead of having the audience join in like they do on Wilco or Uncle Tupelo tracks, this feels more like a conversation with the audience, something Tweedy intended. "All the songs on WARM were picked because they all felt like songs i could put across by myself without a full band arrangement," he said.

Watch his full conversation with Marty Lennartz below and find out more information about his memoir and latest album here.