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Watch John Mellencamp Talk Creative Process & Perform on The Today Show

By: Maura O'Malley

May 3, 2017

John Mellencamp just released his 23rd studio album, Sad Clowns & Hillbillies, last week, and he stopped by The Today Show today to talk all about it.

The title is definfitely an interesting one, and apparently it just … made sense. And it took just 3 seconds to come up with after the songs for the album were recorded.

The album features June Carter Cash’s daughter—and country singer-songwriter in her own right—Carlene Carter, another aspect of the album that just made sense. Apparently Carlene sang some of the songs on Mellencamp’s soundtrack for a Meg Ryan-directed movie, and she also had a small part in a musical he worked on.

And how does someone stay inspired after putting out 23 albums? The older you get, the more you create, and the more open you are to ideas. According to Mellencamp, those ideas just kinda come to you—like when you’re painting and a voice inside you tells you to sing a song into your phone. He’ll explain that more below!

After the interview, Mellencamp and Carter performed “Grandview” and “Indigo Sunset.” Consider those a preview for his tour, which kicks off next month!