You may not know that Matt Nathanson has a writing partner. The problem, though, is that Nathanson doesn't want this guy around. In fact, Nathanson told me, he'd love to "tape his mouth shut and stuff him in a trunk." And even worse: this guy is an assassin.
This assassin is in Nathanson's mind. It's the part of him that tells him not to write certain words or ideas. The assassin is there to kill Nathanson's words by telling him that what he's writing is "dumb." And Nathanson hates the assassin, because when he's around, creativity suffers. Nathanson does his best to keep the assassin at bay so that he can write from the most honest and unselfconscious perspective he knows.
Read my interview with Matt Nathanson about his songwriting process after the video. We talk about the assassin, morning puking, and shitting songs. It's long, sure, but worth every word. Of the 160 interviews I've done, this ranks as one of my favorites because Nathanson is so introspective. He doesn't just tell me about his process, he reflects on it and talks about what it says about him as a person.