Q and A with ... COLIN HAY

Q and A with ...


pop culture news

August 04, 2005|By Sam Sessa | Sam Sessa,Sun Staff

From his rapid rise to the peak of pop with Men at Work in the '80s to his fall into the "Where are They Now" file in the '90s, Colin Hay has tasted both sides of the music industry. All the while, his music kept its honesty and tenderness -- qualities often overlooked by mainstream fans.

That all changed when actor Zach Braff took notice and tacked Hay's "Beautiful World" on the Scrubs soundtrack and "I Just Don't Think I'll Ever Get Over You" on the Garden State soundtrack. Hay plays the Recher Theatre Saturday and Rams Head Tavern Sunday.

People recognize you as Colin Hay from Men at Work. Had you hoped by now they could drop the last part and you could just be known as Colin Hay?

Most of the time it doesn't really matter. Obviously it would be simpler if that was the case. That's not really what's happened. I think the band was so big and successful commercially and ... since then it probably would have been the case if I had a more successful solo career since then, but it's been pretty patchy.

Do you see more young people in your crowds since Garden State?

Yes and no. There's quite a lot of young people since Garden State and Scrubs and the sort. It depends on where I am. Actually, I noticed over the last five years or so that the audiences have gotten younger. That's mainly because of the fact that young people are really the ones that go out anyway. People who are in their 40s just don't tend to go out much anymore. They're home, they're with kids or whatever. Most of the audiences are in their 20s or 30s.

Why did you decide to do the band? Was it because of the material you had?

I like playing in a rock band. A lot of the reason why I started playing solo acoustic shows [after Men at Work] was simply necessity -- not really any artistic choice. It was like, 'Hey I'm going to go on tour,' and the offers that came in weren't enough to warrant me hiring a band. I couldn't afford a band, so I just did it on my own, and it just grew from there.

Colin Hay plays the Recher Theatre, 512 York Road in Towson, Saturday. Doors open 8 p.m. $20. Call 410-337-7178 or visit www.rechertheatre.com. Hay plays Rams Head Tavern, 33 West St. in Annapolis, 7 p.m. Sunday. $33. Call 410-268-4545 or visit www.ramsheadtavern.com.

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