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q&a 2003 / page two

Mitch: Patti, a few years ago there were rumors that a disc called "Rock N Rimbaud" was going to be released. It was supposed to be an early performance of your poetry backed by the music of Tony Glover, from 1974 or so. Is there still a chance we will see that performance released some day?

Patti Smith: I don't know.

Keith: What are the plans with Columbia in terms of releasing new songs and live albums? When can we expect some releases?

Patti Smith: We are working on a new album right now. Columbia is very open to all kinds of projects, including poetry and live performances. We also will be opening a website.

Larry: Patti, what ever happened to the documentary being filmed by Steven Sebring? He was following you around filming your life and it was supposed to come out several years ago! Will this film be released or has the project been cancelled?

Patti Smith: It is a continuing work in progress and will reflect the evolution of the band, family, and individual work in a seven year period.

Mary: You are becoming more prominent in the world of visual art, and rightly, so, I might add. Do you think that this is a "better" medium for some your message or an additional medium? Since your original intention was to draw, is this about the circle becoming completed? I'm not asking if are you ready to quit, because certainly I don't hear that in your voice or see that in your eyes these days, but rather, since those early days, is this about fulfillment, or reaching more people or, an extension of your voice, or even another voice.

Patti Smith: That is a long question. In very simple terms, I express myself in the medium that most suits what is being communicated. The same effort is applied to all mediums. There is precedent for multiple forms of expression by artists from William Blake to Andy Warhol.

Maddie: Which songs are you most proud of writing (not necessarily your favourite, or the fans' favourite)?

Patti Smith: My favorite songs are usually ones that were created by the band. Birdland, Memento Mori and Gung Ho (the track) are three of my favorites. All three of these represent a strong collective effort. I am proud of a handful that I wrote myself, such as Boy Cried Wolf and Libbie's Song. I am also partial to Blue Poles and People Have The Power.

Paula: We know that you are a strong advocate for peace. How do you think things will pan out in Iraq? What is the best way to get our kids involved, to teach them to question their government?

Patti Smith: I am very concerned about the future of Iraq. I am not knowledgeable enough to talk about its future political situation, but I am concerned about the destruction of their culture and their environment, and the physical health of the children. I think that the best thing we can all do is to develop a global peace movement to strengthen our numbers and send our governments a clear message that we do not want war as an option to settling our differences.



Patti Smith