Interviews no image

Published on September 30th, 1993 | by Gerry Galipault


The taste is oh-so-Matthew-Sweet

Matthew Sweet can’t tell a lie. He would love a Top-40 hit.

Who wouldn’t?

After garnering critical acclaim but bouncing from one record label to another, the alternative-pop singer-songwriter finally found a permanent home two years ago with Zoo Entertainment.

His “Girlfriend” album may have been the best pop record of 1991, but it was a draining experience. He poured his heart and soul into the songs, exploring mixed emotions over a bitter divorce and the elation of falling in love again.

“Girlfriend” sold more than 400,000 copies, but contrary to what people might think, Sweet said, he didn’t get rich from it.

“I’m able to pay the rent now, rather than be behind,” he said during a recent tour stop in Minneapolis. “I got out of debt and paid off my ex-wife.”

Much of Sweet’s music is timeless, guitar-driven impeccable pop. Very accessible … but pop radio has yet to embrace him, even with his latest on-par album, “Altered Beast.”

“I guess I would really like a Top-40 hit,” Sweet said, chuckling, “because that would mean I’m really making some money and maybe buy a house some day.

“If you get a regular job in the world, you can work toward that and know you’re going to get it, but, for me, I kind of have to hit the jackpot or I’m treading water.”

Sweet’s not complaining. He’s just saying that a musician can only live so long off the great reviews. With that in mind, Zoo is releasing “Time Capsule” to Top-40 radio as the followup to the modern-rock track hit “The Ugly Truth.”

“When you really listen to what Top 40 is,” Sweet said, “it’s hard to imagine – for myself – to being on it. Although I think I have things poppy enough to do it, I’ll certainly sound different from the rest of them.”

The public and critical response to “Girlfriend” and “Altered Beast” have been overwhelming. After stints in Europe and Australia, Sweet is criss-crossing the States well into late November.

“I will say that having success can create a lot of problems,” the Nebraska native said. “In one way, it solves the deepest problem I had, which was I wanted to be able to make records.

“I’ll tell you who it’s distanced me from is all my friends. I have so little time to devote to staying in touch with everybody. When I do see them, it’s very briefly backstage somewhere. It’s been harder on me with personal relationships.”

He will also tell you that he’s paid his dues. By surviving the romantic turmoil and past record company rejections, he’s beaten the odds.

“If you have a long career, it goes up and down, whether you’re financially successful or not,” Sweet said. “I’m always ready for whatever happens because I hang in there. I knew that, over time, good things would happen.

“It turned out to work for me, because I keep making records.”

Tags: ,

About the Author

Gerry Galipault debuted Pause & Play online in October 1997. Since then, it has become the definitive place for CD-release dates — with a worldwide audience.

Comments are closed.

Back to Top ↑


    Entertainment Weekly names Pause & Play one of “the 100 greatest Web sites”

  • Album Release Dates

    * Release dates are subject to change due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic

    Jan. 15, 2021 » ZAYN,  Jeff Tweedy, Matthew Sweet, Why Don’t We, You Me at Six, Accept, Peter Schilling, Celeste, etc.

    Jan. 22, 2021 » Bring Me the Horizon, Steve Hackett, Sammy Hagar & The Circle, The Dead Daisies, Jeremiah Fraites, Moon Taxi, Jason Bieler and the Baron Von Bielski Orchestra, Kiwi Jr., Teen Creeps, etc.

    Jan. 29, 2021 » “NOW That’s What I Call Music! 77,” Ani DiFranco, Steven Wilson, The Besnard Lakes, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Martin Gore, Lucero, Selwyn Birchwood, Langhorne Slim, Arlo Parks, The Dead South, etc.

    Feb. 5, 2021 » Foo Fighters, Fleet Foxes, Common, slowthai, A.J. Croce, Deacon Blue, Hounds, John Williams, Aaron Watson, TV Priest, The Telescopes, Sarah Mary Chadwick, John Carpenter, Paul Cardall, etc.

    More New Releases » Feb. 12 and Beyond: Florida Georgia Line, Sia, Pentatonix, Tomorrow X Together, The Pretty Reckless, Robin Thicke, Pale Waves, London Grammar, Jillette Johnson, Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, SG Lewis, Escape the Fate, Mogwai, Hearty Har, The Hold Steady, Alice Cooper, Willie Nelson, Madison Beer, Architects, Bonnie Tyler, Lucy Spraggan, Pat Metheny, Kings of Leon, Chevelle, A Day to Remember, Neil Young, Teenage Fanclub, Jimbo Mathus & Andrew Bird, Visionist, Rob Zombie, The Paper Kites, Butch Walker, Lana Del Rey, Ringo Starr, Loretta Lynn, Sting, Ryan Adams, Steve Earle & The Dukes, Evanescence, AJR, Greta Van Fleet, Escape the Fate, Dumpstaphunk, Del Amitri, Mick Fleetwood & Friends, Gary Numan, and many more.

    More Upcoming Releases » Albums coming in 2020 but yet to be scheduled

    Elton John loves Pauseandplay.comDeals of the DayBest SellersSennheiser MOMENTUM 2 Wireless Over-Ear HeadphonesIE 400 Pro In-Ear Monitors

  • New Merch at Hot TopicSave on Tablets at Walmart.comBand T-ShirtsTurntables & AccessoriesHome Audio SystemsAmazon Tap $40 OffSave up to 90% on Textbooks

    NOTE: is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites. We also participate in other affiliate programs.

  • Love We do, too … Help us keep it going. (Every little bit helps.) We ♥ u.

  • Recent Posts

  • Connect on Facebook

  • On Twitter