1 June 2012
Articles | News

News: Cat Power

Chan Marshall talks of pride and heartbreak at new album 'Sun'

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Read our full cover story interview here

Chan Marshall has opened up to The Stool Pigeon about the difficult six-year period leading up to the writing and recording of forthcoming  Cat Power album Sun.

The 40-year-old singer-songwriter had been living until recently with actor boyfriend Giovanni Ribisi and his teenage daughter, but the relationship was ended around the time she was finishing up work on the new record. Asked what took her so long to put out an album of original material following The Greatest’s breakout success in 2006, Marshall said:

“Oh man, it’s a bag of beans there. I entered a long relationship which I really wanted to be successful. You know that thing we’re all raised to want: a beautiful life with children — that family thing that is tangible? [pauses] Before, I tended to just survive, survive, survive. Gaining a lot of… not knowledge, not life experience… but I had this opportunity of travelling around the world, meeting all these people and having these experiences that have shaped who I am now.

“Then there’s this other part of me who wants to be a mother; who wants to love so deeply on a level I’ve never know; to have that connection with life I’ve never felt. It’s very different from singing a song and feeling in communion with humanity, so it was hard for me to be a believer in two completely different things. It was difficult creating both and that’s why it took so long. I was trying to grow my personal life in a way I never did before…”

On the timing of her split from Ribisi, Marshall added: “There was a cut-off date. The timing couldn’t have been more distracting, to say the least. It was down to the wire and [I was] really suffering, in the end. You have a huge responsibility with the things you’re trying to create to do your best. [...The break-up] wasn’t really out of leftfield, but it kinda was. I cut my hair off three days later, got on a plane to France and finished the shit. It’s all good, you know. I love the person very much. I actually love this record very much, too. I’m very proud of it.”

In an interview appearing in the new issue of The Stool Pigeon, Marshall also speaks candidly about her time spent in hospital recovering from a nervous breakdown after The Greatest was released  (“I actually believed that I was in hell”), her newfound sense of responsibility as an artist (with a little help from Patti Smith), and her lifelong desire to become… a comedian.

Issue 38 of The Stool Pigeon should be with all stockists by Thursday (June 14). Alternatively, you can wait until next Monday (June 18) to read the feature on our website. Cat Power’s ninth studio album, Sun, is released on September 10 via Matador.


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