Rufus Wainwright – the son of critically admired folk singers Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle – grew up amid a bramble of musical siblings aunts in-laws half-siblings and close family friends. (Wainright also has a daughter with Lorca Cohen – daughter of Leonard Cohen – whom he co-parents along with his husband.)
While maintaining the family legacy of incisive songwriting Rufus has stood on his own as a genre-expanding songwriter – incorporating elements of classical music – opera and the American songbook into visceral contemporary music, beginning with his self-titled debut in 1998.
Mother Jones: Shakespeare’s sonnets explore longing, betrayal, and lust and its consequences – themes that are present in your songs as well. Did you have a sense of that connection as you worked on this project?
Rufus Wainwright: I feel like the sonnets are the gift that keeps on giving. Certainly in terms of my life—anybody’s life—you go through death childbirth and marriage glory and defeat and so on.
The last 10 years for me have been all of that so the sonnets have been there with me. I’ve been able to lean on them profoundly for many years and they’ve given me a wider perspective of what’s going on really on the inside.
If my songs can do that as well – then I’m a lucky guy.
(ed:..this was my entry into the ouvre of rufus wainwright…
..a ditty called: ‘pretty good day so far’…enjoy..!..)