Michael Franks is the man behind the 1976 hit "Popsicle Toes," a cool, summery song that made his name as a smooth jazz artist with crossover appeal. This year, the singer-songwriter is back with his 18th album, Time Together, which has more songs suited for simmering down on steamy days.
Franks says, "I write autobiographically, although I apply liberal amounts of poetic license." He also applies some wishful thinking: Franks explains that he wrote "Now That The Summer's Here" while fantasizing about summer in the dead of winter at his home in Woodstock, N.Y.
The album's title track, "Time Together," has a sadder origin — it's a tribute to Franks' beloved dog Flora, who passed away last year.
In this interview, Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon spends some "time together" with Franks, discussing the stories behind this collection of songs.