Logan Lynn: From Fundamentalism to Raunchy Rock Star

The musician opens up about his eviction from fundamentalist church life, the drug abuse that nearly killed him, and how music saved him.

BY Brett Edward Stout

August 24 2012 6:00 AM ET

When did you decide to strike out as a solo musician?
When I was a DJ and techno and electronic music obsessed. I had this singer-songwriter in me I’d always connected to musicians writing from a personal place: Tori Amos, Liz Phair, Elliot Smith. When I moved to Portland I met Elliot Smith and got to know him through parting, not the music. Somewhere along the way I mixed this singer-songwriter lyricist with this repetitive on-the-floor house music. One of Elliot’s producers heard a demo I’d made and offered to take me to the studio and cut a record. I was only 17. This was pre-Postal Service. When the Postal Service’s album came out I was little irritated by it. I’d been making that kind of music for a while but not just me, groups like Styrofoam had been doing that for a while too. But then I changed my mind. What was cool was that it opened a new door to an audience. It gave people a contextual reference.

What is it you’re trying to achieve with your music?
I want to make music that I want to listen to. To have a way to clear my crazy head and get my voice about. About things I’m not brave enough to talk about. It started in the ’90s as a way to communicate about things that were terrifying or out of my reach. It still serves that purpose I think. I kinda built a career on being sad and now I’m not so sad. I’m more hopeful. The record I’m making now is for my partner and I’m OK telling him how I feel, but a lot of time I need an external outlet.

Would you describe your first track as a little bit naughty?
The only time I’m any good is when I’m being honest. That song ended up being about sex and wanting to be loved. The desire around that relationship is to be desired, loved, and fucked. I think the song is characteristic of what’s coming from the rest of the album. I think my pop music has always been based in the darker side of sexuality. This seems very celebratory.

Do you consider your work “post-closet” music?
I’ve always been out as a musician. I never was in. I’ve been very open about gay sex and queer love. I don’t think I would have believed you if you’d told me years ago that what oppressed me was going to be a selling point. I think it’s good that it’s not a gimmick. It just is what it is. That it’s universally about love. These things that everybody experiences, queer or otherwise.

Watch Lynn's video for "Turn Me Out" below.

Tags: Music

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