Music Article

The Things That Make Me T Bone Burnett

What’s influenced T Bone Burnett? -- The musician lists his influences from Maybelle Carter to ''Dr. Strangelove''

MAYBELLE CARTER
''Her guitar style is basically everybody's guitar style: rock & roll, country. Maybelle Carter taught everybody. She was a killer.''

ONE-EYED JACKS
''This Marlon Brando movie was shot in Monterey, and it's part of why I moved from Texas to California — it looked to me like heaven on earth, even though Brando was in hell.''

THE STANLEY BROTHERS
''The first and still truest version of that deep, dark mountain music. The whole impression that music made on me was like a conjuring trick.''

SAM PHILLIPS
''Incredible — he and a few country boys [at Sun Records] completely changed the world. The sound of the thing was the art. Nobody'd ever made it sound that wild.''

DR. STRANGELOVE
''One that changed my life. That was an incredible time when politics and art and life and everything all came together in the wake of the [Kennedy] assassination.''

ELVIS COSTELLO
''His mind would just careen around the studio, in more interesting directions than any other artist I've produced a record for. It taught me a lot about freedom.''

SAM SHEPARD
''I was drifting, and music had just fallen apart for me. I said to Sam, 'I don't know what music is anymore.' He said, 'When you do it, that's what it is.'''

Originally posted May 19, 2006 Published in issue #878 May 26, 2006 Order article reprints