Anna: Yeah, but the tuning in That Dog was very different, which allowed me to write really different stuff, or have it sound really different. But, it was also a little bit limiting. The tuning made it just a little artier, and I think I didn’t want to be so arty. My first solo record was kind of like the answer to that; being more pop, more rock, less arty, less weird, or whatever.


Anna: California Fade started out like that. It was even more rock, but I felt like I was just kind of hiding behind distortion. It was like I was hiding behind a structure of what I thought I did. When I wanted to strip it away, I didn’t know what to do. That began with Pat playing on something. Then I took a break and recorded some songs. I asked Joey [Waronker] if he would co-produce a couple of songs with me. He wouldn’t
let me play on anything [laughs], which was really nice. He got Smokey [Hormel] and Steve [McDonald] to play on
a couple of songs: “California Fade” and “Spinning Out.” They took it to a whole other level. Joey’s got a great mind for that. He heard the songs and thought, “Let’s try it like this and let’s try it like that.”

Josh: Was it hard for you to give up that part of it?

Anna: No, not at all. Which is weird, because I’ve always been a control freak about that stuff.

Katie: Was it hard to work with him?

Anna: No. He was great. It was great. It was a really rewarding experience. He even brought in an engineer who worked on Retreat from the Sun, who I’m friends with, John Paterno. Smokey was so sweet. He said he felt honored, basically, because I had never given up guitar duties and he was playing the guitar. I was like, “Just do whatever you want.” So when I heard where those songs went, I felt like they needed to be finished. I can’t play piano the way the piano needed to be played. I played piano on “California Fade, “ but on “Spinning Out” I wanted something more. So, I gave Josh Klinghoffer the record. I wanted his opinion. He loved it, but he also had a bunch of ideas. One night he and Steve were hanging out and they were going to record. I gave him “I Don’t Wanna” and I said, “Just do whatever you want.” Then I left the room and went to sleep. They stayed up all night working on it, and when I heard what he did I thought the song was so much better. And his whole thing was, ‘I know you so well and I know who you are, and this isn’t really representing who you are, but I feel like this is. I feel like this is my take on you as a person.’ It was more about me as a whole than me musically.