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Billy Bob Thornton is about to release his fourth album as a singer-songwriter.
"Musician" isn't the job title most often associated with Billy Bob Thornton. He's far better known as a Hollywood actor and Oscar-winning screenwriter, not to mention a tabloid fixture during his ill-fated marriage to actress Angelina Jolie. But Thornton, 51, is about to release his fourth album as a singer-songwriter, Beautiful Door, which reasserts his status as a serious roots-rock musician — one who's unafraid to address his own specific foibles and missteps.
Thornton recently sat down to talk about his music, the jobs he held before becoming a successful actor, and his own obsessive-compulsive disorder, which he addresses on the new song "Always Countin'." He also describes his attempts to craft complete albums that tell a story from start to finish, regardless of how listeners hear music in a marketplace driven by iPods.