Interview with Logan Lynn | By John B. Moore
It’s been four years since Portland, Oregon’s Logan Lynn last put out a full-length. Despite coming out with a wildly popular cover of Miley Cyrus’ “We Can’t Stop” in 2013, his latest record is aligned much closer to 1990s college radio rock and classic theatrical rock—think more Queen and less Yes—than a contemporary party album.
“I think strong ‘90s college rock vibes are probably there by way of the strong ‘90s college rock vibes I loved and was raised on, and then intentionally nodding to on ADIEU.,” Lynn says, referring to the new LP. “But I think [collaborator and producer] Gino [Mari] and I both had pretty serious musical theater vibes happening as a constant throughout. There are moments on this record that feel really jaunty and bratty, and as we were recording them, I tried to keep this mental image of myself with a dancing cane, clicking my heels in the rain, and moving through these very serious themes with a spring in my step, front and center. The whole thing is very jazz-hands mental health crisis, frankly.”
So, ADIEU.—which will be self-released on Sept. 23—is definitely a bit different.
“This record has been a totally unique experience for me and, at the very least, has been an absolute departure from my usual creative process,” Lynn says. “In the last 18 years of releasing songs, I have rarely—potentially never—written them first as complete a cappella arrangements, and then, taken them into the studio from there. The writing process has looked a number of ways with myself and my collaborators previously, but never like this. Usually, that other process meant that—lyrics and vocal melodies aside—even in their infancy, my songs were at least partially informed, if not largely influenced, by people other than me [and] ideas other than my own.”
ADIEU., Lynn’s eighth and quite possibly best album, covers everything from loss, love, mental health, and sex and drugs: just about everything you need for an enduring rock record. The 15-song album was distilled down from 500 voice memo recordings Lynn captured over a six-month period.
Along with writing and recording music, Lynn is a mental health and LGBTQ advocate. “I have my hands in a bunch of pots professionally, and I have also joined forces with Trillium—Oregon’s largest provider of mental and behavioral healthcare for children and families—to develop a mental health advocacy platform called Keep Oregon Well,” Lynn says, explaining what he’s been focusing on between records. “It’s all about fighting the stigma of mental health and creating a trauma-informed community around the arts.”
In that capacity, he has partnered with over 100 bands, authors, and artists since 2014 on the Keep Oregon Well Concert Series. The “Fight Stigma” events have included everyone from Kevin Bacon, The Dandy Warhols, and Violent Femmes to Flo Rida, Bleachers, and Of Monsters And Men. “It has been so moving to watch a lot of my own heroes show up so authentically for this cause I care so deeply about,” Lynn says.
While continuing to work on the Keep Oregon Well campaign, Lynn and his band are also busy putting together their new live show in support of ADIEU.
Purchase ADIEU here: Bandcamp