Patti Smith gave me life-saving advice. She told me: “It’s your responsibility as an artist to stand up if you believe in something.” I was overwhelmed by that. At the time I was just trying to keep myself alive and stop myself jumping out of windows
We wouldn’t have art and music if we all saw things the same. I’ve spent a lot of my life not fitting in. As a culture we forget that we are very different to each other.
I used to lie about what I did. When a cab driver would ask me what I did for a living I’d say: “I’m a writer.” I never thought I was a “good artist”, like people are “good bartenders” or “good cleaning ladies” with efficiency and a work ethic. I didn’t believe in myself.
I’ve looked death in the eye. The day after Sun [her 2012 album] came out I was in hospital with angioedema [a stress-induced and potentially fatal swelling in the body]. They told me they were going to put me in a coma to save my lungs. My friend came to visit and told me I’d made the Billboard Top 10 and all I could think was: “I don’t want to die.”
Songs can be destructive but helpful. Lyrics come from different places. Sometimes they come from a need, hope, memories or dreams, and sometimes they just come for no reason, from nowhere.
Everywhere I’ve been, I’ve seen the same type of people. It doesn’t matter what language you speak or if you can drive a car or not. We all generally want the same thing: clean water, shelter and security for our families.
Leiam a entrevista completa > http://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/may/10/cat-power-this-much-i-know