BT: Jeff, thanks for your time. I understand your working on your new album in your home studio right now.
JB: Since Tin Lily came out in '05, I never stopped writing so I've got so many songs written. I've got a whole songbook full of stuff - I guess I'll see which ones want to live together. I always try to put together something that has some sort of common thread. Even in this world of quick-fixes, I still cater to people that enjoy hearing something that tells a story. I still miss vinyl and big record covers. I remember sitting with a set of headphones at my brother's stereo - you felt like you could dive right in there.
BT: It's great to hear you speak of the physicality of music in this modern era.
JB: They've taken that away from us - there are attempts to de-value music as a whole. Over the course of the last 10 or 12 years, the big record companies have mistreated the most important people which are the customers. It's about control and greed - that's the reason why everything's in such terrible shape right now. It's taken it from that place where you took a record out, put it on the turntable, dropped the needle and sat and listened. There aren't a lot of things like that around anymore. Thank God for live music because that will never die.
BT: We're looking forward to your return to Birmingham this weekend.
JB: I'm looking forward to getting back out. I haven't toured a lot - I've been writing, spending time with the kids and spending time in the studio at home trying to get these ideas together. I love to go but I hate to be gone. It can wear on you, but I hate to hear people complain. I've slept in the van on many occasions and I've brushed my teeth at the gas station and went and played a show.
BT: It seems that - from a geographical and collaborative perspective - Nashville is a great fit for an artist like yourself.
JB: I love living in Nashville - it gets a bad rap sometimes. I'm lucky to call all of these great friends of mine to come play - it turns out they're world-class musicians at the same time. I would love it if [collaborating] would happen more, but lives are busy. It's a fine line between work and play. If you're getting together and writing a song or playing music, it doesn't seem like that much work.
Details about the Sunday, April 19 show can be found at www.smallstages.com