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20 Questions: Frank Turner

UK solo artist, Frank Turner, formerly of hardcore band Million Dead answers PopMatters' 20 Questions.

1. The latest book or movie that made you cry?

A book of poetry by Philip Larkin. I'm a latecomer to his work, and I don't usually do this, but a combination of his awesomeness and a hangover made me cry. On the train. Everyone thought I was weird.

2. The fictional character most like you?

Hmm, maybe Sal Paradise from On the Road. That's what I'd like to think anyways. A recordist for the madmen of this world.

3. The greatest album, ever?

Almost impossible question. Possibly Springsteen's Nebraska.

4. Star Trek or Star Wars?

Star Wars, but no way the new episodes.

5. Your ideal brain food?

I had a friend who went vegetarian but kept eating fish because she was scared she'd go stupid if she didn't, haha. I get a lot of work done after a hearty breakfast. Scramble those eggs, baby.

6. You're proud of this accomplishment, but why?

I'm proud of my beard, because the first time I tried to grow one it was a follicle disaster of international proportions that made my friends essentially pretend they didn't know me. Now I have a real man's beard.

7. You want to be remembered for...?

Writing good songs.

8. Of those who've come before, the most inspirational are?

Billy Bragg, Henry Rollins, Townes Van Zandt.

9. The creative masterpiece you wish bore your signature?

The Beatles back-catalogue? Haha. Um, maybe T S Eliot's "The Wasteland". Or maybe Ryan Adams' Heartbreaker.

10. Your hidden talents...?

I own a banjo, and can play it. I can recite the whole of "Jabberwocky" by Lewis Carroll. I can speak French. I can identify the guitarist behind any given Iron Maiden solo. Um...

11. The best piece of advice you actually followed?

Life is too short to bear grudges.

12. The best thing you ever bought, stole, or borrowed?

My guitar, which was techincally given to me by Patrick Eggle, the man who built it for me. It's an absolute masterpiece, and no one else is allowed a go.

13. You feel best in Armani or Levis or...?

In clothes I got for free. Seriously, why pay for clothes? That's an honest question. What's the point?

14. Your dinner guest at the Ritz would be?

Regina Spektor... so I could propose to her over dessert, having first wowed her with my wit, wisdom, and slightly obsessive collection of her live bootlegs.

Frank Turner - Vital Signs

15. Time travel: where, when and why?

Europe, the inter-war period, because I studied it for years, life was a lot more intense/extreme back then, and everyone wore hats, which is ace.

16. Stress management: hit man, spa vacation or Prozac?

Probably spa vacation out of that list. Prozac bad. Hitting people, generally not the best idea. So, a nice holiday.

17. Essential to life: coffee, vodka, cigarettes, chocolate, or...?

Whisky. Vodka makes me fight. Oh, and tea, dammit, a decent cup of tea!

18. Environ of choice: city or country, and where on the map?

Right now, city, London town please, nowhere else on earth like it. But when I get older I'll probably hit the countryside. The southwest of England is nice.

19. What do you want to say to the leader of your country?

Not much really, he's not known for listening to people. There are a few political issues that really rile me up, but seeing as he's the cheerleader for most of them it'd probably be a waste of time. Maybe I'd tell him a joke.

20. Last but certainly not least, what are you working on, now?

This questionnaire? Beyond that, world domination, of course.

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