“A lot of the music I really love is depressing,” he explains, “so that’s what I’m drawn to. But when I play in front of people, I have this really strong desire to make them happy. I can’t force people to sit there and listen to sad songs that sound sad. I just can’t do it. If I’m going to have a sad lyric, it has to be set to music that’s uplifting or fun-sounding.”

Laughing, he adds, “But typically if I write a happy song, then it’s okay if it sounds sad. It has to be one or the other.”

Happier sad
Jason Janick
Happier sad

Rhett Miller and the Serial Lady Killers with Leslie & the Badgers and Tim Whalen at the Galaxy Concert Theatre, 3503 S. Harbor Blvd., Santa Ana, (714) 957-0600; www.galaxytheatre.com. Thurs., 8 p.m. $18.

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