At the Risk of Being Narcissistic

By

Okay, so the record label wanted a new bio.  The bio gets an update every time a new record releases, because press people and websites and concert promoters use it for blurbs and such.  Well, they wanted me to take a swing at writing my own, just to see what might happen.  This isn’t the bio we’re using (Kierstin Casella, a very capable writer, did an excellent job on it), but I thought I’d share it here anyway, in light of the questions about Resurrection Letters, Vol. II.


ANDREW PETERSON INTERVIEWS ANDREW PETERSON

(Though he realizes how very strange that is.)

INTERVIEWER: First of all, Andrew, I’d like to thank you for sitting down with me.  I’m a big fan.

SONGWRITER: Oh, you’re very welcome.  I’m a big fan of yours, too.

INTERVIEWER: Really?

SONGWRITER: Oh yeah.  I like your hair.

INTERVIEWER: Really.

SONGWRITER: It’s so poofy.  And brown!  There’s not much brown hair in the world, is there?  I’m glad yours is brown.

INTERVIEWER: Well, for the record, I hate my hair.  It’s always been so thick and unruly there’s nothing I can do with it.  You know those kids in junior high with the surfer cuts?

SONGWRITER: The ones with the bangs hanging in their eyes?

INTERVIEWER: Yeah.  And they hold their heads kinda sideways, and flip the hair out of their eyes.  It’s so cool.

SONGWRITER: Yeah, that’s pretty cool.  You can’t do that?

INTERVIEWER: Nope.  I tried growing my hair long, but it just gets poofier and poofier—

SONGWRITER: But not a good poofy?

INTERVIEWER: No.  Frizzy poofy.  It doesn’t hang.  If I tried the hair flippy thing my whole wig would just flop around and double in size.  That’s why I usually wear a hat.  Or I buzz my head.

SONGWRITER: What does your wife say?

INTERVIEWER: She says she likes my hair.  The poofier the better.

SONGWRITER: Why not listen to her?

INTERVIEWER: I dunno.  Can we talk about something else?

SONGWRITER: Sure.  You’re supposed to be interviewing me.

INTERVIEWER: Right.  Let’s get down to business.  It says here that you’ve sold eighty million records.  How does that make you feel?

SONGWRITER: It makes me feel good.  Would you pass the caviar, please?

INTERVIEWER: Sure.

SONGWRITER: It makes me feel like—wait.  Did you say eighty million records?

INTERVIEWER: That’s what it says.

SONGWRITER: That’s impossible.  If I had sold that many records I’d be eating caviar, and at the very least my car would have A/C.

INTERVIEWER: But you just ate caviar.  I just passed it to you.

SONGWRITER: Well, that was a joke.  We both know I haven’t sold that many albums.

INTERVIEWER: So my information is wrong?

SONGWRITER: Yeah.  Look again.

INTERVIEWER: Ah.  Sorry.  I was looking at a Def Leppard press release.  My bad.  So how many records have you sold?

SONGWRITER: I’m not sure.  I used to worry about that stuff, but I’m trying to quit.

INTERVIEWER: Why?

SONGWRITER: Well, it makes me remarkably cranky.  If I called my manager and asked her how my record sales were doing, whatever the number was wouldn’t be high enough to make me happy.  There would always be someone more famous, more popular, more successful (from a worldly standpoint), and that would take my mind off of what I’m supposed to be doing.

INTERVIEWER: Which is?

SONGWRITER: To eat caviar.

INTERVIEWER: No, really.  What are you supposed to be doing?

SONGWRITER: Shedding light.  Making music.  Telling stories.

INTERVIEWER: Stories?

AUTHOR: Ho, there, lads!

INTERVIEWER: Who’s he?

SONGWRITER: (Whispering while AUTHOR eats a crumpet.) Oh, that’s Andrew.  He’s an author now, and he’s taking it way too seriously.

INTERVIEWER: An author?  Wow.  What was the book?

SONGWRITER: It’s called On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness, which I think is a ridiculous title.  He thinks it’s really funny for some reason.

INTERVIEWER: So it’s a funny book?

SONGWRITER: Well, no, not exactly.  It’s a fantasy/adventure story that doesn’t take itself too seriously.  Unlike Mr. “I Wish I Were British” here.

INTERVIEWER: (Clears throat.) Andrew, how’s it going?

AUTHOR: (Eating fish and chips.) Splendidly, thank you for asking!  Do either of you chaps have a light for my pipe?  I feel the need to stain my teeth and look intellectual.

INTERVIEWER: Um, sure.  Here you go.

AUTHOR: Many thanks, my boy.

INTERVIEWER: So what’s up with the weird hat?

AUTHOR: This old thing?  I wear it because my hair is unsightly in its poofiness.  Did someone mention stories?

SONGWRITER: Yeah, I did.  This is my interview, not yours.

AUTHOR: You’re upset.  Is the smoke bothering you?

SONGWRITER: No, but you are.

AUTHOR: How rude!

SONGWRITER: Well, I thought the interviewer and I had a good thing going here.  The conversation was picking up—I had said some Very Important Things.  And then you show up with your pipe and your hat and your silly accent.  What do you want, anyway?

AUTHOR: I just thought I’d stop by for a moment and say hello.  I have another pipe if you’d—

SONGWRITER: I don’t want to smoke a silly pipe, C.S. Lewis.

AUTHOR: I’m not C.S. Lewis.

SONGWRITER: You can say that again.

AUTHOR: You don’t have to be so mean about it.

SONGWRITER: I’m just being honest.

INTERVIEWER: Are you two finished?  I have some questions for both of you, actually.

SONGWRITER: Really?

AUTHOR: Really?

INTERVIEWER: Yup.

AUTHOR: Delightful!

SONGWRITER: Fine.

INTERVIEWER: So this question is for the songwriter.  What’s the latest project?

SONGWRITER: It’s called Resurrection Letters, Vol. II.

INTERVIEWER: Wait—I don’t have anything in my notes about a volume one.  Has that been released yet?

SONGWRITER: Nope.

(Pause.)

INTERVIEWER: Okay.  Is there…anything you’d like to add to that?

SONGWRITER: Nope.

INTERVIEWER: Okay.

(Pause.)

AUTHOR: Oh, bother!  Would you stop being so enigmatic?  Stop acting like it’s not a trifle confusing that you’re releasing volume two before volume one.

SONGWRITER: But I like being mysterious.

AUTHOR: No one likes a show off.  Just tell the man what he wants to know.

SONGWRITER: If I do, will you stop bothering me?

AUTHOR: Perhaps.

SONGWRITER: The reason I’m releasing this album as Resurrection Letters, Vol. II is that when we were in the middle of the record—

INTERVIEWER: We?

SONGWRITER: Me and my musical compadres, the Captains Courageous.

AUTHOR: He’s being enigmatic again.  Their names are Ben Shive and Andy Gullahorn.

INTERVIEWER: Thank you.

AUTHOR: Think nothing of it.

SONGWRITER: Anyway, when we were in the middle of the record, we realized that these songs dealt with the second half of the story.  They seemed to find their unity in the idea that they touched on the effects of Christ’s resurrection on our own lives.  These are songs about what happened in the wake of that day.

INTERVIEWER: And what happened in the wake of that day?

SONGWRITER: Are you serious?

INTERVIEWER: Indulge me.

SONGWRITER: Life happened.  True, abundant life.  Life touched by a freedom and grace that those in the Old Testament only dreamed of.  See, the Resurrection—that moment when Jesus drew a breath in the dark of the tomb and his flesh and blood and bones reanimated—real flesh and bones, mind you—that moment changed the universe.  It was the climax of the long crescendo that marked the change of the song from minor to major.  Or from simple to complex.  Or from darkness to a spray of refracted light.

AUTHOR: Now you’re talking.

SONGWRITER: Our lives are still difficult, of course.  The world still needs fixing.  But the Fall, the great brokenness of the world, began to work backwards after that moment on Easter Sunday.  God gave us his Holy Spirit so that we could partake in the long work of pushing back the effects of the Fall.  God said to Death, you may come this far and no further.  And the flood waters began their recession.  Am I making sense?

INTERVIEWER: I think so.  You’re saying that this album isn’t so much a story album, but a collection of songs that are all touched by the idea that Christ’s resurrection is a part of our lives today.

AUTHOR: Well said, Chumblythorpe!  Another way to put it: Resurrection is at the heart of the story God is telling.

SONGWRITER: Right.

INTERVIEWER: So are you planning on writing volume one?

SONGWRITER: Well, yes.

AUTHOR: That’s where I come in.  May I?

SONGWRITER: Sure.

AUTHOR: I’m working on a book (also called Resurrection Letters) with a Bible scholar friend of mine.  It’ll be a companion to the albums, one part meditational, one part commentary on the events surrounding Easter Sunday.  The album got its title from a series of meditations I wrote last year during Holy Week.  Someone on the website forum called them “resurrection letters”, and a light went on in my head.  I knew that I wanted this album to bear that title.  But when it came down to it, the songs, as he said, didn’t deal specifically with Christ’s resurrection.

INTERVIEWER: But they did deal with the theme of resurrection.  A general resurrection as opposed to the specific Resurrection, right?

SONGWRITER: Exactly.

AUTHOR: In the process of arranging and writing the book, we’re laying the groundwork for volume one.  It may take a long time.  In fact, another album may release before volume one is written and recorded.  We’ll have to see how things pan out.  But the prospect of using these floppy, guitar and piano-playing fingers to make music that tells the story of Christ’s passion is perhaps the highest calling a musician can aspire to.

INTERVIEWER: So there’s going to be a book, and the writing of the songs will come from that.  Is that what you’re saying?

AUTHOR: Yes.  We think.  Who knows, really?  We’re making this up as we go.

INTERVIEWER: And in the meantime you’re releasing volume two as an album unto itself.

SONGWRITER: Yes.

CLOWN: Dingle dongle dippity doo!

INTERVIEWER: Who is that?

SONGWRITER: Oh, that’s Andrew.  Ignore him, or you’ll encourage more strangeness.

CLOWN: (Somersaulting across the floor.) Jangly fangly frimp dee dooooo!

INTERVIEWER: What’s he doing?

AUTHOR: He’s working on another song for kids.  He does that sometimes.  Don’t look at him!  Just keep talking.

CLOWN: Borp?  Pribb!  Zeeebert! (Skips away in parakeet costume.)

INTERVIEWER: That was odd.

SONGWRITER: You have no idea.

INTERVIEWER: So he writes songs for kids.

SONGWRITER: Yeah.  He and his friend Randall Goodgame released a children’s record a little while back called Slugs and Bugs and Lullabies.  It did really well, and opened the door to a fun partnership between them and the folks at Big Idea, Inc.

AUTHOR: They’re the ones who do the VeggieTales videos.  So far, the Goodgame/Peterson team has written three of the Silly Songs with Larry.

INTERVIEWER: That sounds like a lot of fun.

SONGWRITER: Oh, it is.  He loves it.  Shh!  Here he comes again.

CLOWN: (Playing an orange ukelele.) Gleep!  Zazzamarandabo!

INTERVIEWER: There seems to be a lot going on these days.  You have three kids, right?

SONGWRITER: Yeah.  Three amazing kids.  Jamie and I have been married for 13 years now.

INTERVIEWER: Congratulations.  Speaking of Jamie, she used to sing with you, right?

SONGWRITER: For the first five years of my career.  She really liked to sing with me, but she never really aspired to be a Singer.  She was a schoolteacher for a few years while I finished college, and now she homeschools our kids.  She loves it.

INTERVIEWER: What else is on your plate?

SONGWRITER: Other than the caviar?

INTERVIEWER: The imaginary caviar.  Right.

SONGWRITER: Well, now that Resurrection Letters, Vol. II is wrapped and ready to release, I’m taking some time off.

AUTHOR: And I’m finishing my next book, by jove.

INTERVIEWER: So the two of you don’t work at the same time?

SONGWRITER: No, there’s not enough room in this town (points at head) for both of us.  It’s hard to think about music when you’re working out the internal conflict of the main character in chapter 49.

AUTHOR: And I can’t get a thing done with all that guitar racket banging around.  Would you pass the hot tea?

SONGWRITER: For crying out loud, knock it off with all the anglophile business.

AUTHOR: I can’t help it.  It’s the hat.

SONGWRITER: Then take it off.

AUTHOR: I can’t.  My hair’s too poofy.

INTERVIEWER: You guys are pathetic. We’re done here.

CLOWN: (Dismounts unicyle.  Hugs INTERVIEWER.)

INTERVIEWER: (Runs away.)

SONGWRITER: (Shrugs.)

AUTHOR: (Moves to Oxford.)

Profile photo of Andrew Peterson

As a singer-songwriter and recording artist, Andrew has released more than ten records over the past fifteen years. His music has earned him a reputation for writing songs that connect with his listeners in ways equally powerful, poetic, and intimate. He has also followed his gifts into the realm of publishing. His books include the four volumes of the award-winning Wingfeather Saga.


57 Comments

  1. dave

    i’ve got poofy hair too. it can’t be reasoned with. i just spike it up. excellent interview. i thought the interviewer asked good questions.

  2. Ron Davis

    When my hair gets long and poofy, we call it the Ronfro. It’s as awesome as it sounds.

    I loved the interview. You guys are all pretty amazing.

  3. Tony Heringer

    The many faces of Barliman. I suppose a YouTube video will be forthcoming? You’ve the script for it. 🙂

  4. jacobt

    Gully produced-video, most definitely. I’m sure you guys don’t have anything else going on, huh?

  5. c.Lates

    My brown hair gets poofy and unruly too…with a bit of curl mixed in. And my wife likes my hair too. But I like to keep it short and tight. Hey, we sound a lot alike. Maybe we should hang out and be friends. In fact, my wife is a sign language interpreter. I bet if you took her (us) on the road you would have a lot of deaf people come to your shows.

    ….i have no shame

  6. Ben

    I just downloaded “All Things New” on itunes. Incredible. Even moreso than the artist interviewing himself.

  7. Jeff Cope

    That was great. I just read the whole thing aloud to my patient and enduring wife who also loves AP (all 3 of his personalities evidently).

    Oh, and we pre-ordered our CDs today, too….

  8. Peter B

    This reminded me of the David Wong/John Cheese/Dr. Oxford interviews. More characters and more funny, though.

    Like Loren, I would prefer poofy to the steady march of despair that is my expanding forehead.

    Also, Gully video! Yes!

    The End.

  9. Joy C.

    “… But the Fall, the great brokenness of the world, began to work backwards after that moment on Easter Sunday. God gave us his Holy Spirit so that we could partake in the long work of pushing back the effects of the Fall. God said to Death, you may come this far and no further. And the flood waters began their recession…”

    Beautiful, Andrew. God often uses your stuff to reach my heart. Thank you.

    BTW- My friend whom God used to birth me into Christ out of devastation and New Age just died. Your song “Three Days Before Autumn” has been a deep blessing to me. Thank you for saying that being “broken and breathless and bent to the ground” is ok. love, prison joy

  10. Profile photo of Jason Gray

    Jason Gray

    @jasongray

    I’m still mad at all four of you for saying that you thought I was a better looking version of Dwight from The Office, because a better looking version of Dwight is still pretty homely.

    Darn you Andrew Peterson(s)!

  11. Charlotte

    Hahaha. I love it! So funny. My hair gets poofy too, if I’m not careful…. I have to make sure it’s thinned enough when I get it cut…. and make sure I style it. 🙂 Ponytails are SO helpful for me.

  12. Profile photo of Andrew Peterson

    Andrew Peterson

    @andrew

    Ack! I just posted this on the Facebook page, but I wanted to reiterate it here: I “became a fan of Andrew Peterson” on Facebook because I wanted to be able to monitor the updates to the fan page. When I send out an update, I want to make sure it’s been sent, and that it looks the way I mean it to. You guys must have been worried about me after this posting and the fan thing happening back-to-back.

    Well, I’d better go primp my hair and stare at myself in the mirror for a while.

  13. becky

    Isn’t it funny how something as inconsequential as good or bad hair can set the tone for our whole day? I’ve noticed that, unless it is very extreme, most people can’t tell the difference between my hair on a good day or a bad day. I don’t know if I feel comforted that others don’t notice all those horrible flaws I see, or dismayed that they don’t notice how good it looks on those rare days when it is behaving the way I want.

    My hair doesn’t get poofy, but it has these annoying wisps that fall out when it is in a ponytail. Sometimes they curl and stick straight up from the top of my head. Wisps on other people are kind of attractive, but most of the time they are not on me.

  14. whipple

    I still can’t believe that the label took someone else’s review over this one. I mean, it would fit snugly into one page in some liner notes, right? And it’s extremely informative, you might say. That is, it denotes the inner Captain-Jack-Sparrow-like schizophrenic ravings of a hallucinogenic mind, in short. I think it’s very telling and artistic and poofy.

  15. The One True Stickman

    Here I was ready to settle for an audio recording of the interview – but gosh would a video be incredible! But then it also might ruin some of my mental image…

    And I hereby join The Ranks of the Poofy-Haired.

  16. Charlotte

    Wisps! Oh Becky, I totally know what you mean. They are all over the place. Thank heaven for bobbie pins and styling creme!!!!!

  17. Kathy

    By the way, I really truly honestly like the look of poofy hair. Perhaps this is because I don’t have to deal with it myself. I have one or two friends who have to deal with extra curls, and they don’t like it at all–but the ultra-curly growing out look endeared itself to me years ago and I still like it.

  18. Peter B

    I tried to do the Buckwheat thing in high school by growing and fluffing out my hair, but it collapsed and ended up looking like a washing machine agitator.

    You have a gift, Andrew. Use it well.

  19. John A

    I love you man! Humor, yet with depth. Insightful, yet quirky. Cool, yet geeky. American, yet British.

  20. Sophia

    Dear Andrew Peterson,

    I am 13 and six-eighths years old and I love your music. My mother was taking a nap earlier and I couldn’t get her to get up. So I went onto your site for a song for her and found this interview. And that woke her up. We love the “INTERVIEWER: That was odd. SONGWRITER: You have no idea.”bit . My hair is a mix between really curly (especially when it is humid) and fizzy and poufy . My parents and I are on vacation for a week and I forgot my hairbrush. I am not looking fowards to brushing it! I am imagining that your hair looks like an Irish dancers hair (wig) after she tried to brush it!!! By the way, I have lived in England for a year and know the Chronicles by heart (literally) and can tell them to you in a british accent. And my Daddy is a very intilectual theo./phil. professor.

  21. Seth Ellis

    Dark Sea of Darkness was one of our wedding presents (per our registry) and it made the move from Oregon to Venus (Maryland) tolerable. Many thanks, and we look forward to the new album and the next book in the Wingfeather series.

  22. Peter B2

    Oh how I miss your entertainment, easy accessibility to shows (when I lived down South) and a kindrid with poofy hair. Please come to Minnesota- If you dare.

  23. Mark

    I didn’t notice the poofy hair at the concert Saturday night. Of course we were near the back and could see quite so well. Thoroughly enjoyed the night and the friends we brought along with us were very impressed. Thanks!
    p.s. Your books will make excellent Christmas gifts.

  24. JennC

    Thanks – I needed this! It nicely distracted me from three of my boys’ rising ruckus down the hall. It’s bound to end up with a trip to the emergency room (they’re laughing rather hysterically, which is never a good sign…), but I’ll have your interview to laugh about to myself while they get their stitches!
    Thank you for your ministry – we have always been well blessed.

  25. mike whitaker

    wow, im so glad that you are doing so much! It stinks waiting around 2 years for your favorite artist to do a new album… im not talking about you, i mean just in general…anyway, andrew i have really enjoyed and been touched by each work you have put your hands to… thanks so much!

  26. marjorie towers

    Just heard Don’t Give Up On Me for the first time, awesome, beautiful, words fail to adequately express the worship moment.

    As a wife of a poofy headed soul, I say, “Always, listen to your wife.”

  27. Tony Heringer

    Amen sister! The longer I walk through life with my bride, the more sweet she sounds. Even when I don’t want to hear what she’s saying, I still listen because I know its not just her talking to me. Jesus is talking through her to me.

  28. Paul

    Such Genius, theres nothing like reading an AP blog, or listening to an AP song to throw into contrast my own attempts at writing over the years. I was simultaneously entertained and blessed. Thanks for that Andrew!

  29. Fellow Traveler

    Andrew, we’re still waiting on that video…

    “We look to you!”

    “So they all came around and looked at him for several days…”

    (That’s from Tokien’s Farmer Giles of Ham, which you will read if you haven’t already.)

  30. Jazz

    Becca, you shouldn’t be disturbed. This just says that we have something in common. Unlike the Camel Candles.

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