Why return to your art this year? Well, last year, I had started to draw cartoons about the songwriter’s life, just how it’s done. And I felt like I’d lost track of my drawing. I’d gone for maybe two years without making a picture in my journal, and I just wanted to get my edge back. But then I got really excited about it and then I started thinking “How could I integrate this into my music life somehow?” And I happened upon the idea of making a deluxe version of the album.
Did you work with Adele again on her upcoming third album? Umm ... I’m not supposed to say. I can’t even tell you whether I’ve been sworn to secrecy! So don’t assume anything!
What new collaborations can you talk about? I just finished a lot of intense work with Birdy for that movie “The Fault In Our Stars,” which is the most tearjerking of tearjerkers. The trailer made me cry even before I saw the movie. And Birdy is amazing — I love her. There’s a song called “Best Shot,” one called “T-shirt” and then we did a couple for her album, like “All You Never Say.”
But Birdy is only 18. She couldn’t have experienced that much heartbreak yet, right? Let me put it this way. When I was 11, I could listen to a song like “Those Were the Days” by Mary Hopkins, and just wind up crying and crying. And the song is very sentimental, but this was even before I had a life — I was already able to cry at a nostalgic song. So I think people have within them a whole repertoire of emotions, even if they haven’t lived the things you can talk about in a song.
Any other assignments? I have a couple of things that I think Florence Welch, of Florence and the Machine, is going to cut. And I just finished two songs — one of which is a real monster — with Tom Odell. But mainly, I spent January working on the deluxe version of my album.
IF YOU GO
Dan Wilson, Joe Henry
Where: Great American Music Hall, 859 O’Farrell St., S.F.
When: 8 p.m. Friday
Contact: (415) 885-0750, www.slimspresents.com