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Music is a Way of Communicating - so say Daryl and John!

Rocklive interviewed Daryl and John in 1985 - here's what they said!

Music is a way of communicating

Everyone's favorite blue-eyed soul men, Hall & Oates, are touring America in support of their latest album, Big Bam Boom, which features their big hit single, "Out of Touch." Yet ANOTHER hit single...Daryl and John are incapable of having a 45 flop on them! Rock Alive! has gotten together some thoughts on music, their early years, influences and such, as only Daryl and John can tell 'em!

Writing Songs

Daryl: I never listen to an album after it's done! Lyrically, we like subjects you can look at in a lot of different levels. John and I write songs together a lot.
John: We have a style we've developed based on teamwork.
Daryl: We're almost telepathic; if we can't quite get a handle on what we want to say, we somehow pull it out!
John: Songwriting is laboring under strict restrictions. There is not much room to verbalize a complex topic. It is a skill, and it's not easy to do.
Daryl: Pop music IS a challenge...it's the hardest thing to do.
John: You have to say what you want to say in a way that communicates through the medium of radio. If the message is complex, it must be clothed in a way that people can understand. If you have something good, it can be repeated.

Daryl's thoughts on Soul

Daryl: I'm all for the soul revival. Besides being great music, soul music is very integrated music. The essence and beginnings of rock were soul. I'm glad to see it come back!


Daryl: I liked street corner music - acapella, doo-wop, like the Jesters or the Jive 5. I got into music when I was around eight years old...hundreds of people like Little Richard, Motown, Stax-Volt stuff. I liked music song to song; I liked that song or this song, not generally a group's total body of work. Music was a compulsion with me; music is a way of communicating.
John: I've been singing since I was three years old. We have real motivation to to be musicians. Writing a song is a real important out; getting emotion into a song.


Daryl: Video is good to do.
John: It's great exposure.
Daryl: I admire what the Ritz ( a club in Manhattan ) does with video. It shows Fred Astaire to new music. But I haven't seen any video as art; it's very superficial.
John: Video is one of the ultimate selling tools. You reach millions of people in three minutes.
Daryl: Music is an aural medium; a video takes away imagination.
John: We are using video as a tool for people to see us!

Adult Education

Daryl: I was a rebel, a hoodlum as a teenager! It had a lot to do with frustration. I came from a very calm environment and I didn't want to be calm! Being a rock star is one of the least quick routes to the top. I read a lot, and didn't follow the normal pattern you had to follow. We both studied music as little kids; we've studied over 20 years and are still studying.
John: When you pick up different new instruments, you become better writers.
Daryl: We taught ourselves. I learned guitar, John learned piano. I read constantly as a student.
John: I listen to music for inspiration. I take private lessons, 2-3 months of music theory; a very intense course. Never think you'll know enough; that'll never happen!

On the Road

Daryl: I think it's fun. It's the one place you can really see people and get feedback from an audience. Everyplace is different. You can go to a small town, and it could be the best place of the tour.
John: There are pockets of energy that some towns have. Australia is interesting and different; very unusual.
Daryl: College towns are interesting; everyone is really into the show!
John: Atlanta has a lot of energy!