People in the Middle East may consider the U.S. an evil hegemony that has tainted their culture, but when I look at the growth of racial and ethnic tolerance and understanding in my generation in the U.S., and see those sentiments make it around the world, it makes me feel proud.
I think a lot of self-identity and inner-personal development is hampered by consumerism and capitalism because we see ourselves as a reflection of the TV, rather than as a reflection of the people who are around us, truly.
When I started out, I wrote the songs, recorded the songs, mastered, mixed, did the artwork, made the packaging and did the distribution, all myself. Now I understand what everyone's jobs are, who is doing them right, and who isn't.
I've become more introverted as I've got older. I used to be an outgoing person who joked around a lot, but as the amount of energy I expend by sharing my music has increased, I like to balance it by spending time by myself and recuperating.