Patti Smith has said she has plans to release “one more album”, with the 75-year-old punk poet laureate revealing she’s been working on new material toward a 12th studio effort.
“I’ve written a lot of songs,” Smith said. “I’d like to do one more album and my record company, Columbia, has very generously left the door open.”
With four albums to her name, including 1975’s historic ‘Horses’, Smith went into semi-retirement back in 1980 to focus on raising her children. “I was at the pinnacle of real success and financial success,” she said, “but I wasn’t growing as an artist or human being.”
Emerging in 1988 to release ‘Dream Of Life’, Smith would go on to release six more albums. She likened making her 11th album, ‘Banga’, to the feeling she had while recording ‘Horses’.
“‘Constantine’s Dream’, the long improvised piece at the end, touched a lot of things that concern me – art, the future of mankind, climate change, the horrors done to our indigenous people, and love.
“I love the cover,” she added, “which was shot on the fly by my friend Stephen Sebring.”
Smith also discussed the artwork for ‘Horses’. Given black and white treatment by its photographer, Robert Mapplethorpe, and an androgynous pose and wardrobe, Smith depicted a significant departure from the promotional images of female vocalists that were typical at that time.
“I wanted Robert [Mapplethorpe] to do the album cover because he wasn’t known and I wanted people to see his work,” she said. “I had no idea that it would have such impact. Robert took 12 pictures and I think it was the eighth and he just said: ‘This is the one with the magic.'”
When asked what her definition of punk rock is, Smith replied: “Freedom”.
Last month, Smith appeared alongside Gogo Bordello at a Ukraine fundraiser in New York City. There, Gogol Bordello frontman Eugene Hutz – who was born in Ukraine – co-hosted the benefit at NYC’s City Winery. Proceeds raised from the event were given to Come Back Alive, a foundation providing support to the Ukrainian armed forces.