I recently found out that my father wrote poetry, so I think that creativity is in the genes.

When I was street performing, people would throw everything from jewellery and coins to business cards.

One night I got a business card from someone at Warner Music.

I guess it's all about what drives you . . . my motivation to make music has been consistent over the years. It's something that I would continue to do even if I had no success.

There are aspects to early success that can be difficult to manage. I didn't really have a handle on it . . . it came quickly and I was overwhelmed by it.

I've taken great steps and efforts to educate myself. I guess I can be a little obsessive, but I like to be involved.

People have out-and-out told me that I'm a bad dresser. At an early photo shoot someone suggested that I put on leggings. I said to them that I don't wear leggings. I've since had people coming up to me at award shows saying, "I can do something for you."

I have a public life that's my work life and I have my personal life . . . in some ways the decision to keep the two things separate relates to my work.

Economic issues in this country [the US] are not being properly addressed.We had a tax cut that benefited wealthy people. . . at the same time we're fighting a war that is draining money that could go to address domestic issues like education and health.

If I were coming up now I don't think I would stand a chance . . . I may not be making blockbuster records anymore but at least I'm doing it on my own terms.