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Sufjan’s Symphonic Jersey Turnpike

He even digs the tolls.


After the successful bam premiere of his orchestral suite inspired by the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, in November, indie folkster Sufjan Stevens—who has planned to write and record concept albums for all 50 states—is looking to New Jersey. “I’m obsessed with the Jersey Turnpike right now,” he said at the Tibet House benefit on February 13. “It’s so perfected and so efficient. It’s like a military endeavor—it was built by postwar military personnel, and they ran the whole enterprise like the army. And it’s an artery from New York, the great metropolis, to the rural countryside, South Jersey. And it’s very expensive. I like the tolls. I like that you have to pay to drive.” So this is his next musical project? “New Jersey, the musical,” he said with a laugh. “An ode to the turnpike.”

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