By LA Weekly
By Henry Rollins
By Weekly Photographers
By Shea Serrano
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Dan Weiss
By Erica E. Phillips
By Kai Flanders
And all three of you have written some pretty good songs.
Yeah, I enjoy some of Dylan’s work, I do. I think at times he’s overly opaque. And people have to know what a song is about. You know what I realized in writing some of those songs, though, like “Royal Jelly” and “Former Glitzenstein” and some of those, was that it really doesn’t matter what you’re saying as much as it matters what you mean. And I’ll tell you honestly, John, as I sang “Royal Jelly” on the Ed Sullivan Show that night, there were a lot of square people out there; there was many people out there who had no idea, you know, what a “dripping lamppost” was or, you know, “the mouse with the overbite” — you and I know that that’s an obvious allusion, but there were many people in our audience who had no idea what a mouse with an overbite was.
But what I realized in singing to them was, it doesn’t matter what I’m saying, what the words are. It’s what I mean — and by the end of that song, I guarantee you, John, they knew what I meant. Maybe not in a literal way, but they knew that was a good song — “I’m confused by it, but it was good.”
If you could change anything, would you? Or would you do it all over again?
I would’ve stuck with reefer for a lot longer. I moved on to amphetamines and cocaine a little too soon. My mind works fast enough already.
Change things? I probably would’ve changed the timing of when my first wife came into my hotel room after I had married my second wife without telling my first wife. Other than that, I got no regrets.