Sonic Youth has lasted [28 years] because we really like playing together. We're kind of like a dysfunctional family. We don't do drugs or drink and we're committed to working out our problems. Sounds boring, right?
I didn't think we would get this far. Sometimes I think, how and when will it end? We've been working with [the choreographer] Merce Cunningham, and he just turned 90. Not that we'll be performing when we're that age, but it's great to see somebody who's so creative all their life.
If you want to be a musician, make sure it's what you want. [Fame] is dangerous only if you can't deal with it. I think that's what happened with Kurt Cobain. We never had that instant fame thing. We're still under the radar.
I don't like to go away on tour and leave my [14-year-old] daughter behind. It's kind of hard. When she was little, she used to ask, "Why don't you get a nine-to-five job? Why don't you work at a store?" But I think she likes it now.
I owed it to myself to return to [visual] art [she graduated from the Otis College of Art & Design in LA and exhibits regularly]. I always wanted to be an artist. It's what makes me feel best. It's nice to do something when it's just you, and you don't have to be democratic.
Alternative music is very healthy right now. It's an interesting time. There's a lot more dissonance. When we first started, "noise" was a derogatory term.
Any industry in which you have to age in public is difficult. The hardest thing is balancing your life and kids with work – that's universally difficult for women. There are different standards for men.
If I hadn't become a musician, I probably would have made films. I can't imagine a life outside being creative. I'm not really good at anything else, except cooking.
Sonic Youth's new album, 'The Eternal', is out on 8 June on Matador
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies