Lenny Kravitz gets overcome with “euphoria” when he thinks of new songs.
The rocker claims many of the tracks on his new album ‘Black and White America’ came to him as dreams and he loves the feeling of waking up fresh with inspiration.
Asks how it feels to wake up with a song he has dreamed, he said: “It feels almost euphoric. The songs come fully formed. I actually hear a record playing, and I’m digging it. Then I wake up and realise, ‘Wait, that’s not a record. That’s a song. It’s something new.’ Then it becomes a matter of quickly finding a tape recorder.”
Lenny has a near-identical formula for committing his songs to record, and relies on the assistance of his musical partner, Craig Ross, even when he is intending to write tracks alone.
He explained to Gibson.com: “It begins with hearing a song in my head. When that happens, I either grab a guitar or sit at the piano, and work out the chord structure. Then, as soon as possible, I get into the studio, and begin cutting the tracks, before the song is finished. I know the chord progression, and by then I either have the melody, or a partial melody. I put the drums down first.
“If it’s a song where I’m playing all the instruments, I’ll have Craig Ross learn the song, and strum it on acoustic guitar, even if there’s no acoustic guitar intended for the song. That gives me something to comp to, while I’m playing the drums.
“After that I put the bass down, while I’m listening to the drum take, and after that, the guitar tracks. At around that point I usually get the hook, and sing the song. I might also hear a synthesiser part in my head, or some bongos, as I’m going along. I just keep going until it’s done.”