Are You With Him, So Far?
life has had enough ups and downs to be inspiration for a novel or movie. He
is a ministers son who began his career singing at revival meetings. He
has been a boxer, a chair-maker, a skydiver, a painter (see his web site for
the paintings) and a $50 a night performer in restaurants. A full-time musician
since 1997, his new album on Back Porch Records, Are You With Me?, comes
out August 10th and presents a collection of songs that examines the travails
of romantic relationships.
During a recent
phone chat from his home in Mississippi, Paul Thorn gave ONE WAY his perspective
on life, love, music, and the pursuit of a positive outlook.
On His Background As A Boxer: The thing Im most known for
as a boxer is actually a fight I lost, which is when I fought four-time World
Champion Roberto Duran. I fought him in 88 - I was in my early 20s. The
fight was scheduled for 10 rounds - I fought pretty decent for six rounds, but
the problem was his punches were cutting my skin. Between the sixth and seventh
rounds, I had cuts over both my eyes and the doctor stopped it because the blood
was interfering with my vision.
On His Family: My father was a Church of God Pentecostal minister
and a traveling evangelist. When I was 3, he would take me with him on the road
doing revivals. Every night before my daddy would preach, hed put a tambourine
in my hand and I would sing. The biggest musical influence I have is my
father. Nobody famous really influenced me.
On Musical Education: I dont read music. I play by ear. My
dad showed me a few chords. I just kinda learned by imitating people and listening
On Country Music: I like the good classic country. The modern country
sounds like 70s pop. And theres too many navels exposed. I think
its a lot sexier if youre covered up.
On Work: When I was boxing, since I wasnt a World Champion,
I wasnt making a lot of money so I had to keep a day job. When I got out
of boxing, I started really digging back into my songwriting. I worked in a
factory for 12 years while I was boxing and while I was writing songs.
On Getting His Big Break: I eventually got discovered while I was
playing in a pizza restaurant in Tupelo, by Miles Copeland. Actually, a guy
who worked for him came to hear me and I gave him a demo and then he flew everyone
out to hear me because of my songs.
On Concerts: As a ministers son, I wasnt allowed to
got to concerts when I was growing up. So the first concert I ever went to in
my life was when I opened for Sting.
On The New Album: Its songs about men and women. Theres a
song called If I Can Get Over Her and its about how we all
have someone in our past that we used to be so in love with, but now were
so over them that if we saw them in Wal-Mart we would duck down another aisle.
On Love and Positive Attitude: I like good love songs. But I dont
like love songs that say things like Without you I would be nothing.
If youre nothing without your mate, no wonder they left you! First thing
you gotta do to have a successful relationship of any kind, is you gotta love
yourself. You gotta like what you see in the mirror.
Are You With Me?