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Moonlight_Graham

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Matt,  thanks so much for again sharing a little bit of yourself with me, and with all of us, through your new record, your tour, and through your thoughts in different media and especially on this Bored.  It's been fascinating being a part of your journey the last 20 years or so, musically and personally, through whatever you share with us, and you've gone places I could have never have imagined.  Based on some of the songs from the last few records, you have no idea how happy I am to see that you've seemed to have found true happiness in your life.  Congrats!  As a fan, I only ask 2 things from you in 2016:

 

1 - Please stop smoking. Any time I see you in an interview or pic smoking, watching a singer with your god-given gift willfully destroy that gift by his own hand, bit by bit, it's a damn fucking tragedy.  Not to mention I've had 2 close relatives die of lung cancer from smoking, so I don't want to see your family lose you before your time.  For a guy so intelligent as yourself, it's a really REALLY stupid thing to keep doing, career-wise and personally.  Would be like watching a younger Jimmy Page slam his own fingers between a door every day.

 

2 - Musically, just keep doing whatever you want creatively.  I'm sure you get pressures and advice from all sorts of people and entities.  Fuck them.  I hope you keep taking risks, big risks.  LOES was a big risk, and it was one of the best albums in your career.  Do a full-on jazz album if you want, or whatever the heck floats your fancy creatively.  Write a novel, make some paintings...whatever.  The fans will buy it.

 

Good luck!

Edited by Moonlight_Graham
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Guest girl

Matt,  thanks so much for again sharing a little bit of yourself with me, and with all of us, through your new record, your tour, and through your thoughts in different media and especially on this Bored.  It's been fascinating being a part of your journey the last 20 years or so, musically and personally, through whatever you share with us, and you've gone places I could have never have imagined.  Based on some of the songs from the last few records, you have no idea how happy I am to see that you've seemed to have found true happiness in your life.  Congrats!  As a fan, I only ask 2 things from you in 2016:

 

1 - Please stop smoking. Any time I see you in an interview or pic smoking, watching a singer with your god-given gift willfully destroy that gift by his own hand, bit by bit, it's a damn fucking tragedy.  Not to mention I've had 2 close relatives die of lung cancer from smoking, so I don't want to see your family lose you before your time.  For a guy so intelligent as yourself, it's a really REALLY stupid thing to keep doing, career-wise and personally.  Would be like watching a younger Jimmy Page slam his own fingers between a door every day.

 

2 - Musically, just keep doing whatever you want creatively.  I'm sure you get pressures and advice from all sorts of people and entities.  Fuck them.  I hope you keep taking risks, big risks.  LOES was a big risk, and it was one of the best albums in your career.  Do a full-on jazz album if you want, or whatever the heck floats your fancy creatively.  Write a novel, make some paintings...whatever.  The fans will buy it.

 

Good luck!

 

Best post ever!

 

I agree wholeheartedly with you on the smoking thing. It's always been at the back of my mind, but I was afraid to bring it up so as not to be rude. I used to work with a very sweet and kind lady at my work. She died of cancer years ago. She always smoked outside on her breaks. I wish she had never smoked. She would probably still be here today.

 

I'm with you on #2 too.

Edited by girl

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Best post ever!

 

I agree wholeheartedly with you on the smoking thing. It's always been at the back of my mind, but I was afraid to bring it up so as not to be rude. I used to work with a very sweet and kind lady at my work. She died of cancer years ago. She always smoked outside on her breaks. I wish she had never smoked. She would probably still be here today.

 

I'm with you on #2 too.

 

I know you guys mean well, but I feel I need to add something to this as it's something that bothers me allot.  Allot of attention is placed on smoking and how bad it is for you. However the same could be said for people who eat unhealthy food all the time (ie; fast food, junk food, pop, excessive coffee etc;), or drink alcohol heavily.  If it's not smoking that will kill you, something else will. There are so many other things out there that can kill you just the same, heck you could get hit by a bus and die tomorrow.  Just saying.

 

With all due respect to "girl" and "Moon". I don't mean to hijack the thread either.

Edited by Sly Botts
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As an ex-smoker, I will only say that you have to quit when you want to.  People telling you to quit often has the opposite effect.  There is no denying that your health will suffer from smoking, but pretty much anything anymore will affect your life negatively.

 

I'm just amazed at people who sing professionally and smoke too.  I can't imagine the effect it would have on your voice.

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As an ex-smoker, I will only say that you have to quit when you want to.  People telling you to quit often has the opposite effect.  There is no denying that your health will suffer from smoking, but pretty much anything anymore will affect your life negatively.

 

I'm just amazed at people who sing professionally and smoke too.  I can't imagine the effect it would have on your voice.

 

I generally found that smoking gave my voice access to a lower register...so it can change or add depth to your voice too. Although I've quit on and off several times. Currently I haven't smoked since before Christmas. 

But yeah, quitting is a personal choice. If you want to smoke, you smoke. If you don't, you don't. that's it. Sometimes I wanna smoke and I do, other times I just stop. 

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I have to agree with Sly Botts. I'm sure Matt's friends and family are always telling him to quit smoking too and of course he knows that it's not healthy. The thing is that as an adult he has the freedom to make his own choices and sisn't that a great thing? The truth is non-smokers have their own set of risk factors for comorbidites. A lot of the cancer patients I come across (I work in the medical field) are non-smokers, non-drinkers of s healthy weight. I think people are quick to blame lifestyle for people's poor health but it's not always fair or accurate. Stress also contributes to metastases and every smoker knows smoking reduces stress! As an ex-smoker, I can say I quit when I wanted to. People requesting I quit just pissed me off. That said, I think it is admirable of you guys to care so much about Matt's health. I wish you heathy and happy lives and I'm glad to have the chance to share my opinion.

I am also in the medical field and you are absolutely 100% correct.  Sometimes doing what helps decrease stress (ie; having that smoke when you get home from work) can have benefits.

 

I love how you used the "comorbidites" term. lol

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I know you guys mean well, but I feel I need to add something to this as it's something that bothers me allot.  Allot of attention is placed on smoking and how bad it is for you. However the same could be said for people who eat unhealthy food all the time (ie; fast food, junk food, pop, excessive coffee etc;), or drink alcohol heavily.  If it's not smoking that will kill you, something else will. There are so many other things out there that can kill you just the same, heck you could get hit by a bus and die tomorrow.  Just saying.  With all due respect to "girl" and "Moon". I don't mean to hijack the thread either.

 

I appreciate the respectful reply.  If Matt was excessively obese or an alcoholic I'd probably say something too.  If I had the chance to ask Elvis to please quit taking addictive meds, I'd do it.  The thing with smoking is that it also specifically targets virtually all the body systems that make up his wonderful voice; mouth/tongue/throat/vocal cords/lungs etc.  He already has a very audible wheeze from what could just be from getting sick all the time, maybe pneumonia/bronchitis or whatever.  Matt has free will and can and will do whatever he wants...but so do I, and I don't want to sit around and watch our friend slowly destroy himself and his god-given gift while staying silent about it if I have the opportunity to voice my concern just this once. Not trying to be a naggy-pants, this comes from a place of heartfelt love and concern.

 

I started getting more concerned when I saw this video, ironically where Matt explains how The Bored helped him out by finding the "All Your Sons..." demo. Matt's teeth/gums in this vid are wrapped with brown cigarette tar, his wheeze audible. Watch in fullscreen HD (not on a cellphone):

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r-OvPhnJ80s

 

Sometimes doing what helps decrease stress (ie; having that smoke when you get home from work) can have benefits.

 

With all due respect, tell that to my grandfather and aunt, both dead from lung cancer via smoking. Thankfully my mom quit right after her dad and sister passed away, the writing was on the wall for her.  She gained a bit of weight from bad eating to compensate afterwards, but she's still alive.  Every addictive habit has its benefits, they relieve stress.

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Just to be clear, I wasn't saying you shouldn't ask Matt to quit smoking, I was just wanting to comment on the attention smoking gets.  I don't normally voice my opinion like this but what the heck eh?

 

I see nothing wrong with your comments about Matt smoking.  You obviously care about the guy and his talents and wish to express that.  Nothing wrong with that.  No trolling intended here.

Edited by Sly Botts

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Guest girl

Matt has free will and can and will do whatever he wants...but so do I, and I don't want to sit around and watch our friend slowly destroy himself and his god-given gift while staying silent about it if I have the opportunity to voice my concern just this once. Not trying to be a naggy-pants, this comes from a place of heartfelt love and concern.

If this is a one-time opportunity to voice my concern, I will take it. I'm not trying to be a naggy-pants either.

When Matt found out he had a lung condition (and it wasn't actually cancer), he threw his cigarettes in the garbage and never smoked another cigarette for years. He talked about his lung condition in detail on the Rockburn Presents interview (circa 2001). If he could quit cold turkey in the past, he can do it again.

 

 

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Edited by girl

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It did seem a little inappropriate to bring it up in a post from Matt himself taking the time to give us a thank you & a small update on his life. It kind of derailed the conversation & is something that could effect Matt wanting to come on The Bored more often knowing his health & personal life will be criticized when I'm sure all he wants talked about is his music.

 

He's in his late 40's, im sure he's heard it all from his family to the guy at the corner store selling him the smokes, he's an adult & the only one who can make him quit is himself.

 

That's just my opinion & I agree with a lot of you wanting the best for him but we should respect him enough to know when/where to say & not to say things that are considered personal & private.

 

We all know smoking is bad but will we bring up what he eats next? How much he drinks? I just think it's crossing a thin line especially since Matt is very intimate & close with his fanbase.

 

I will say I too have noticed the wheeze following every breath that has made some live acoustic songs or interviews unlistenable.

 

This isn't to knock anyone, I agree with alot of you & as someone whose family has a long history of smoking im scared everyday for the health of my mother. But that's for my family to deal with as it's Matt's family to deal with his smoking.

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It did seem a little inappropriate to bring it up in a post from Matt himself taking the time to give us a thank you & a small update on his life. It kind of derailed the conversation & is something that could effect Matt wanting to come on The Bored more often knowing his health & personal life will be criticized when I'm sure all he wants talked about is his music.

 

I don't think that would happen anyways, and I'm willing to bet he knows that and wouldn't let one fan's comment about smoking scare him away.  If anything,  I could see him arguing a point or just simply responding in kind to it.  Anyhow, I guess this ant hill has been turned into a mountain and no longer needs to be discussed.  I'm sorry if I stirred up a shit storm.

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Guest girl

As Tony said, I completely agree that it's most appropriate to refrain from discussing Matt's personal life in order to keep this a safe and respectful space for everyone to enjoy. The reason Matt likes us "the best" is because we're above those so called fans who tell him what to do!!!

I completely agree with what Tony said. I just wanted to put a gentle nudge out there. I'm done now.

Edited by girl

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Reading my original post again, I'm not sure whether or not I regret expressing my concern on the topic of Matt's smoking (Matt's always been candid/honest and never pulled punches on his feelings on any topic, so I didn't think he'd mind if I did the same), but I definitely do regret the way in which I said it, and probably regret the specific thread in which I brought it up the topic also.  Whether inappropriate or not, i'll say again that it came from from a place of love (probably too much "tough love" for that particular thread given the positive vibe of Matt's opening post).  The subsequent responses, including mine, well I agree it was definitely too much for the thread and off-topic, and I regret the thread went that way, but I felt I had to defend myself at the same time.

 

I apologize to Matt, Anton, and any other Bored members for any offense or headache I might have caused.

 

Much love to you all.

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Reading my original post again, I'm not sure whether or not I regret expressing my concern on the topic of Matt's smoking (Matt's always been candid/honest and never pulled punches on his feelings on any topic, so I didn't think he'd mind if I did the same), but I definitely do regret the way in which I said it, and probably regret the specific thread in which I brought it up the topic also.  Whether inappropriate or not, i'll say again that it came from from a place of love (probably too much "tough love" for that particular thread given the positive vibe of Matt's opening post).  The subsequent responses, including mine, well I agree it was definitely too much for the thread and off-topic, and I regret the thread went that way, but I felt I had to defend myself at the same time.

 

I apologize to Matt, Anton, and any other Bored members for any offense or headache I might have caused.

 

Much love to you all.

I honestly don't think it was a big deal really.  It was a good example of respectful conversation.

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It's no easy task, to give it up.  

 

I smoked when I was fairly young, then gave it up for a while, due to both a girlfriend's nagging, and the lack of availability (being 14).  Once I turned 18, I started again for some reason.  I smoked almost a pack a day for almost ten years.  

 

It became quite a habit, literally.  I think part of the difficulty of giving it up is the triggers that make you want to smoke.  For me, the two triggers I had were work breaks and driving in the car.  I couldn't take a break at work, or drive in the car, without wanting one.  I literally had to go on my honeymoon to a foreign country, where I wouldn't have the temptation to have one.  Coming back to work was hard after that.  I basically had to stop hanging out with my smoking friends for a while, until the urge had mostly passed.

 

It's a hard thing to quit, and I applaud you if you decide to.  The reality is, pretty much anything will kill you these days.  Do what you want.

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As far as your voice goes, the technique you've learned before AOB after your surgery sounds the same even if you've started smoking again. I know you've referenced using trickery on songs like While We Were Hunting Rabbits but as far as I'm concerned your vocals live are spot on even the ones you've adapted from the MGB screaming days. It is odd for fans to hear Apparitions on Underdogs and then hear you sing it half a step lower (and even a whole step lower on the last tour if I'm not mistaken) using your current singing technique. But it's by no means not as good, just different. I see people talking about your vibrato but that's always been there and is part of your style. Plus, personally, I always enjoy hearing reworked songs (like Rabbits on the Arrows tour). 

 

Anyhow all this to say that, yes I think it's a shame you had to start smoking but only concerning your health. I use "had to" because I know it's sort of a life buoy for you at the time (I've seen it happen before to people who had to go through a lot of stress and we all know 2006-2007 was stressful for you). I just hope you can quit before you hurt your health long term. But until then, artistically, I don't think you've lost anything.

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That said, it is interesting to me than in another thread people are discussing my voice and how it was "better" when I was younger. My vocal technique was utterly terrible through Beautiful Midnight - and was the primary reason I had to get surgery. Following that, my range increased. Smoking is detrimental to your voice, no question, but the primary reason I had surgery was because I sang improperly during a time of extensive touring, etc.

 

My voice has changed, no question. Age does that. No one sings the same after 25 years. That said, the voice is an instrument and so exploring new approaches is no different than anything else. Were I 25 and could listen to Cold Water or Los Alamos I would have most definitely been blown away by the vocal approach. My mother has been on me for decades to stop trying to operate in registers that are on the periphery of my range. She's right. There's just as much to explore elsewhere. But that's an artistic choice.

I'm no expert, but I don't think I would say your voice was "better" quality-wise when you were younger either. I think, (at least on my part), people are saying they just enjoyed the way it sounded and how it made you unique, despite your self described "terrible" technique.  I do get what you're saying here though. You can't abuse a musical instrument like that and expect it to keep functioning at 100%.

 

I view enjoying your old vocal style like how one enjoys the flavour of a good smoke. I prefer Camels Turkish Gold myself.   :whistle:  (Since we're talking about smoking here).

 

I hope you don't feel my comments are inappropriate.  If they are, I apologize in advance.

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Quitting is really about just about setting your mind to it. It's one of those things you could say is on my to do list every day that I just never get to. But that is also no excuse.

 

Well I wish you the best no matter what happens.

 

 

That said, it is interesting to me than in another thread people are discussing my voice and how it was "better" when I was younger. My vocal technique was utterly terrible through Beautiful Midnight - and was the primary reason I had to get surgery. Following that, my range increased. Smoking is detrimental to your voice, no question, but the primary reason I had surgery was because I sang improperly during a time of extensive touring, etc.

 

My voice has changed, no question. Age does that. No one sings the same after 25 years. That said, the voice is an instrument and so exploring new approaches is no different than anything else. Were I 25 and could listen to Cold Water or Los Alamos I would have most definitely been blown away by the vocal approach. My mother has been on me for decades to stop trying to operate in registers that are on the periphery of my range. She's right. There's just as much to explore elsewhere. But that's an artistic choice.

 

I think the consensus on here wasn't that your voice was "better", but just that your style had changed, not for better or worse.  Some of the acoustic tours you've had and playing Rabbits live has shown that you can still sing in the style from your earlier career (pre-WLRRR-ish) and hit the classic notes, but you just choose to explore other areas of your voice as you said.

 

Maybe similar to what your mother said, I guess when you drive a Ferrari you can tend to want to drive it as fast as it can go...especially when you're young.

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In reading the thread thus far, I can tell that we are all on the same page about one thing:  we all strongly desire for Matt to keep making music for as long as is humanly possible.  I am in complete agreement with this sentiment!

 

I don't, however, feel qualified to weigh in on the specifics of smoking.  I, myself, have smoked a lot over the years and miss it when I am in a non smoking period such as the one I am in at the moment.  The only reason I have ever quit, is because smoking is getting in the way of another one of my few passions, namely kickboxing. 

 

I would like to share this very interesting Ted Talk, regarding a longitudinal study of men, over the course of 75 years:  

https://www.ted.com/talks/robert_waldinger_what_makes_a_good_life_lessons_from_the_longest_study_on_happiness#t-759065  

 

Spoiler alert:  what they found, is that the greatest predictor of longevity, was not the relative health of the individuals throughout the course of their life, rather it was the depth & happiness of their relationships.   While I have only met Matt in person for a quarter or an hour (max), I'm going to go out on a limb here and state that his music demonstrates he is living in secure, happy & deep relationships. In that way, Matt, you are ahead of the curve, and well on your way to hitting your centennial!

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I just want Matt to do what is best for him. He knows that smoking isn't good and he should quit, but it isn't always that simple. I have never smoked but both my parents have for years and years. They would quite and start up all the time. Stress was always a factor for them going back to it. I just can't stand the smell of it. Which sucks since I work in a casino and when it's busy it can be a little too much. I usually have to step out some time to get some air. So yeah, if not just for health reasons, I really just can't stand the smell of it so I don't do it.

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I quit. Task accomplished.

 

Said it in the other thread, but I'll say it here too. Congrats. I quit too (again), just before Christmas.

 

Here's to staying quit!

Edited by emmit643

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Whoop!  Whoop! 

 

I'm sending you many hopes, that the process will be as painless as possible.

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Nice Matt.  Now you just have to stay that way, which is the hardest part!

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