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Interview: John Oates talks new memoir, Forest Hills Stadium show (Includes interview)

“Earlier this morning, I flew to Philadelphia and did a CBS Sunday morning, which is a big deal show. I visited some of the old places where Daryl Hall and I started, so that was interesting and it brought back these memories,” he said. “Then, I jumped on the train and here we are in New York at The Cutting Room. I love this place. I’ve played here a number of times.”

On the idea for his book Change of Seasons: A Memoir, Oates said, “It came about through a series of interviews I did with Chris Epting, who ended up being my co-writer. He understood me in a way that a lot of people didn’t. I told him that I had written a series of handwritten journals from 1970 to 1980, and I had 13 volumes of them. He was fascinated with that and he wanted to see them. I made copies of them and sent them to him. He laid them out in a timeline and that’s how the book started,” he said.

Regarding his future plans, Oates said, “To go on tour with Daryl starting May 4 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with Tears for Fears. We are going to do a big, big American tour, which lasts until the fall. After that, I am going to release an album in 2018. It’s a progressive, Americana album.”

On June 16, Hall & Oates will be performing at Forest Hills Stadium in Queens, New York, and Oates is really looking forward to playing that iconic venue. “We played there many years ago in the late 70’s and early 80’s,” he said.

In April of 2014, Hall & Oates was finally inducted into the coveted Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. “It was a big deal, and it took a long time, but better late than never,” he said. “Bands from our era made an important contribution to pop music.”

When asked what other moments he is most proud of, he reflected, “I am most proud of is that after all these years, Daryl and I can still work together, and there are still people in the world that want to hear this music that we made. We have a great band and we are physically healthy enough to go out there and play it. I am blessed and very happy that these things have all come together in 2017,” he said.

Oates listed multi-Grammy winner Alison Krauss as his dream female duet choice in music. Each day, Oates continued to be motivated by music. “Since I moved to Nashville 10 years ago, I’ve slowly had my musical fires rekindled and I feel very excited about creating and going in the recording studio. I’ve surrounded myself with some incredible friends and musicians that have supported me,” he said.

On his pre-show rituals, Oates said, “Don’t get too drunk that I can’t play.” “Also, take a piss before the show,” he said, with a guffaw. “That is actually the truth. I’m not kidding.”

If Oates was not in the music industry, he shared that he would have loved to have been a “race-car driver” as his alternate career choice. In his spare time, Oates loves driving on a country road, as well as riding his bicycle and hiking. “I like to stay healthy,” he admitted.

The veteran rock star defined the word success as being “satisfied with your life and to be able to do exactly what you want to do.”

To learn more about Hall & Oates and their summer tour, check out their official homepage.

For more information on John Oates and his new book, visit his website.

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 19,900 original articles over the past 16 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a seven-time consecutive "Best of Long Island" winner, and in the past three years, he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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