I love loud music. I listen loud, and that's part of how I've learned how to do this. Record softly and play back loud and a whole other thing happens.— T Bone Burnett
The most stunning T Bone Burnett quotes that will activate your inner potential
I got out of high school, bought a recording studio and started operating it as an engineer and a producer.
The more perfect music we have, the more attractive the peculiarities and anomalies of human performance become. Perfection is a second rate idea.
We live in an age of music for people who don't like music.
The record industry discovered some time ago that there aren't that many people who actually like music. For a lot of people, music's annoying, or at the very least they don't need it. They discovered if they could sell music to a lot of those people, they could sell a lot more records.
When the arts are eliminated, children get bored and tired of school.
When the arts are included, children's imaginations are allowed to run wild.
Risk is what separates the artist from the artisan.
The essence of show business is, if you see a tight-rope walker go across a tight rope, everybody claps. But, if you see him wobble, everybody gasps.
If it is true that we have a personal relationship with God, then that's enough for me.
You know, the thing that struck me about Civil War music was how bloody it was;
it was full of hatred. There was incredible vitriol in it.
I think, especially among the New York intelligentsia at that time, that there was a reason Bob Dylan went to New York to happen, because there was a culture developed there around the ideas of civil rights, around the idea of democracy growing out of Emerson and Thoreau, these ideas of the fanfare for the common man.
I think we in the Alpha Band, which was a strange group anyway, weren't dealing with any of these issues. They sneaked up on us and took us over, before we know what was going on.
It's also ironic that in the old days of tape and tape hiss and vinyl records and surface noise, we were always trying to get records louder and louder to overcome that.
I've seen a study in the last year that digital sound actually induces stress in the listener.
In other words, I'd say the whole story of Bob Dylan is one man's search for God. The turns and the steps he takes to find God are his business. I think he went to a study group at the Vineyard, and it created a lot of excitement.
Everything around a writer, or musician in the record business, probably everything in all the United States or in all of western civilization, is about competition.
I naturally wanted to be saved, so when I came home I told my mom I wanted to be confirmed. That's the way I related to it, being raised an Episcopalian. I went to Dallas and got confirmed.
Honesty is the most subversive of all disguises.
Listen, the story of the United States is this: One kid, without anything, walks out of his house, down the road, with nothing but a guitar and conquers the world. And we've done that again, and again, and again – Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Jimmy Rogers, Howlin' Wolf, Muddy Waters.
Almost everything The Beatles did was great, and it's hard to improve on.
They were our Bach. The way to get around it may be to keep it as simple as possible.
Music, for centuries and centuries, was used to teach everything.
It was used to teach language, mathematics, history. The news was music. Everything traveled by song. It was used to teach ethics. It was used to create conscience, probably more than anything.
Technology changes nothing.
Probably the deepest use of music and of art is to create conscience.
The record business is dangerous to the health of bands and individuals, which is something I'm just now learning. But it's not dangerous in any of the ways people think; it's not that they try to make you compromise your art. That's not the problem.
There's always been an incredible amount of junk music, and junk everything.
Marshall McLuhan said that a medium surrounds a previous medium, and turns the previous medium into an art form. So, what was once a junk culture, like film, television surrounded it and turned it into an art form.
My original idea was to produce and not make records myself.
For centuries, everything was taught through music.
History was taught through music; language and mathematics were taught through music.
At different times in my life I met God from a different point of view.
I figured out early on what I wanted to do.
Let the business take care of itself.
If you get involved in the business, every hour that you're involved in business is an hour that you're not practicing. And every hour that you're not practicing is another hour further away from where you want to be.
I don't want to make music for people who don't care about music.
We live in an age lit by lightnin'; after the flash, we're blind again.
I'm not going to get in to an argument with anyone about the relative merits of Judaism and Christianity, and what it means for a Jewish kid to be a Christian - I'm just not interested in that argument.
I don't hear any of the popular stuff unless it's good 'cause I pay no attention to popular culture, at all.
[Bob] Dylan began to incorporate things into that scene that were controversial then. He got shouted at in Newport when he played electric guitar, for instance. There was a certain purity that was sought among those people.
I can tell for sure, the technologists have made it clear that they don't care about musicians. The arts have been sacrificed on the altar of technological advancement.
I'm not stupid enough to want to be famous.
But I would like to be able to earn a living playing music.
I want to write songs and play them for people - live.
Still, records are documents of a period of time.
Most records are documents of two or three years, and I just approached it as a record I was doing over a 20-year period of time.
Music was the medium through which knowledge was passed from generation to generation.
People make art on the sides of buildings, and they'll make art on the sides of trains. They'll make art wherever they decide to make art. The technology that people are working with now will be replaced in 10 years, so that's not where your future is, if you're a musician.
The hallmark of an artist is generosity.
The internet has surrounded television and turned television into an art form.
My advice for young people is that, if you want to be a musician, the thing to do is practice eight hours a day.
If Picasso walked into Disney looking for a job, they would throw him out on the street. Couldn't draw good enough.