Pete Rudder Interview With Justin Hayward
Australia, September 2007
Pete Rudder: Justin Hayward, welcome to Brisbane!
Justin Hayward (on the phone): Very nice to be here.
PR: Now, I remember you were here a couple of years ago with the Moodies...
PR: You came out after interval and you sang 'Forever Autumn.'
JH: Oh, that's right. Yes I did. Yeah, on this....here and in the U.K. as well, yeah.
PR: (laughs)...and there was rapturous applause, spontaneous standing ovation. I was in the audience, and I...
JH: You sure, Pete?
PR: ...and I got up pretty quickly.
JH: Why, that's very nice.
PR: But it's such a powerful song. Why is this song so powerful?
JH: Well, I wish I knew. But I suppose it kind of resonates with people and...um...maybe they play it every autumn (laughs)...I don't know.
PR: It's rather ironic, isn't it? I mean, here you are, one of the world's finest songwriters, poets, singers, performers, musicians...
PR: ...and yet, here you are with somebody else's song putting you in the spotlight as a major solo entity.
JH: Yeah...yes, that's right: as a singer. Yes, it's...the whole thing is a bit...it's, well, it's a bit scary for me. It was the thought of it, you know, at the beginning of this whole 'War Of The Worlds' tour, because I said to Jeff Wayne, I said, "Well, I will be playing the guitar, won't I?" "Oh no, you're the character. You know, the Sung Thoughts Of The Journalist. So you're in costume of the 1890s and so you won't be having a guitar." And I thought, "Oh my god, I've never played anywhere without a guitar!" You know, that's my...um...my shield.
PR: That's right, something to hold on to.
JH: Yes...well...yes. And then...so I said, "No, then, I REALLY WANT to play the guitar." And Jeff said (adopts authoritative voice), "Well, tell me, what kind of guitars did they have in the 1890s?" And I said, "Well, exactly the same as they are now, actually! (laughs)...just a bit bigger!"
PR: (laughs) Good stuff!
JH: Anyway, I lost. And there I am doing this song in my...in my guise as the Sung Thoughts Of The Journalist. But it's a great show. I love it, I love being part of it. It's "flash, bang, wallop," you know, huge effects and some great people on this Australian tour. Brilliant.
PR: Well, we're all looking forward to it. Now, you've had an amazing ride since 1967...40 years, isn't it really, in the Moodies?
JH: Yeah. 41...41 years this August, yeah.
PR: That's right, from 'Days Of Future Passed,' and of course your signature tune, 'Nights,' and then through the Core Seven albums. And, of course, a lot of those now released on 5.1 so we're all going out and buying new copies, because there are all these beautiful bonus tracks on them. And it's really interesting to hear the bonus tracks on the 5.1 releases, because you have...you get into the harmonies a lot more. You sort of "deconstruct" the song, and you realize just how important the harmony was. Not just the boys in the band's harmony, but your own harmonies, too, with yourself.
JH: Yes, I think that's right. And it was very interesting looking back. When Universal said that they were going to do that, I said, well, I wanted to remaster the original albums and go back to the vinyl master, which was the best. Because, when they were first put in the digital format, in my opinion, they rushed to do it as they did a lot of things in the 80s, and they didn't do it very well. So it needed to be done properly, which it has been done now. And then they said, "Oh, well, we've got all of these other tracks as well." And I said, "I'll bet you haven't," because Tony Clarke and the producer and the rest of us were very careful not to leave a kind of trail of unreleased stuff. But they managed to find things that I'd completely forgotten, and different versions, and it's very interesting to have that, and to see what went on around the sessions, and to see other versions of the songs, and even some unreleased stuff, which is quite interesting.
PR: They're absolute treasures. Now, some days I'm driving along in the car and I've got 'Octave' on and I'm listening to 'Had To Fall (In Love),' and that is a fairly simple song. Although I think, in essence it wasn't a very happy song for poor old Mike, because he couldn't get his mellotron round it.
JH: No, that's right. In fact, it was a difficult album, 'Octave,' for us - it was our comeback album in the 70s after we'd been apart for three years - and then...I know he was having problems in his personal life, and musically, during that album. And 'Had To Fall In Love' was actually a track that Ray and I just went in to the studio next door, that was always vacant at night, cause we were working at night and other people were working during the day, and we just put down that track between us with acoustic guitar. And I think I played drums and bass as well, and Ray did harmonica and some harmony stuff.
PR: It's an amazing song.
PR: I really love it...
JH: Oh, you're very kind.
PR: ...because it's such a simple song, and yet I cannot for the life of me pick your harmony in that.
JH: Ah! Well, it's a very strange tuning that I did it in, as well.
PR: It is, it is! Can you let us in on it some time? (laughs)
JH: (laughs) Well, I've got to think of it now, and try and remember it now myself. But I know it's based on a D tuning, but with a few...with a couple...with a G in there and...
PR: But have you got Ray or anyone else in there doing any harmony with you?
JH: I don't remember on 'Had To Fall In Love.' Probably not. Ray was doing the harmonica and just doing a kind of gentle rhythm thing, and I think that's...we just mixed it ourselves and it became part of the album. And I know when Mike, I think when Mike listened to it to put some keyboards on, he thought, "Well, I can't find a way in cause you've kind of done it." But that was fine by us. You know, you don't have to have big mellotron on every song, and I think often, you know, less is more in records.
PR: Hmm. Do you find song construction an intellectual pursuit?
PR: I mean, Paul McCartney used to say that, you know, it's all basically mathematics.
JH: Well, for me, it's about having one spark of inspiration, and that sets me off on a particular road with a song, or with a sound, or with a phrase or something like that. And when I've got that, then the rest of it is pure work really, that you have to put in to kind of fill in the gaps. So for me, it's like ten percent inspiration and 90 percent work.
JH: Yeah...the first...yes that's right... perspiration. The first ten percent is just wonderful, and it's like a wonderful gift, and there you are and you've got the foundation to build on.
PR: It is, too, it's a wonderful gift, and you've always given us a musical feast with your songs. I mean, you've got your basic melody, as you say, and then you sort of overlay that with beautiful things on your guitar, and not just with acoustic, but also lead. You do lead on a lot of stuff too, don't you?
JH: Yes, yes...I've always been...yes, I've always been, you know, played lead. Well, I'm the only guitar player in the band as a matter of fact, you know, cause John's on bass...and keyboards and drums...and flute, which was always our identity.
PR: Typical example of that, that I really appreciate, is on 'The Present,' and I know 'The Present' was an album that was sort of maligned a little bit, even on your own videos.
JH: Even by us, yes (laughs).
PR: Yeah, you said you sort of lost direction a little.
JH: Well, I think we did, yeah.
PR: I just don't agree. I think it's just one of...it's one of my favorite albums.
PR: Particularly the track that you wrote called 'Meet Me Halfway.' Now that is a classic example of what you do to embellish a fairly simple melody line and just fill it up with all sorts of lovely things. And it's just a...I don't know, it's a feast.
JH: Well, I think every recording for me has an aura around it of things that were going on in my life and in our lives at that particular time. So it's always tainted by that and it was a very unhappy time for us as a band. And I think the problem was, with 'The Present,' we were sort of searching for something that we didn't find until the next album, which was called 'The Other Side of Life,' and then suddenly things came together for the four of us, and with Tony Visconti. And I think we had...then we had a great sort of five years with Tony, and we had hits again, which was really important for us.
PR: That's so funny that sometimes out of despair, great things can come. You changed direction.
JH: Yeah, sure...sure, it is absolutely. And just when you think it's all going sort of "pear-shaped," something pops up and something happens. I mean, it happened with us when we started to do orchestra shows as well, you know. I didn't think it was possible to do a show with a full orchestra with the Moodies sound, even though we had the...all the parts from Peter Knight and 'Days of Future Passed,' from the first album, where there was orchestra on it. But I didn't think it was possible, but PBS in America persisted, and they were absolutely right. And it led to a sort of ten-year period for us of playing with orchestras all over the world that really was a great resurgence for the Moody Blues.
PR: Let's talk about your voice. You've got this amazing voice. It's sort of, I dont know, it's really hard to describe it. I mean, you've got...I mean, there are 83 muscles allegedly up there that control that intricate piece of equipment.
JH: Wow! (sounds amazed)
PR: And, how do you manage to produce and control the quality after all these years? I mean, it's just something that's served you so well over time, hasn't it?
JH: Well, you're very kind. And the answer is, I don't know. But I've never thought of it like that really.
PR: Well, if you go back to the 60s...
PR: You know, you had this sort of, you used to produce this mournful sort of note in your voice, like in 'Simple Game' and 'King And Queen.' And I love that track 'What Am I Doing Here,' where you say, I think, "pwincess" and "cwy." How did that come about?
JH: Um...I think I was reading 'Lord Of The Rings' a bit too much! (laughs) ...naah...we were all a bit hung up on sort of psychedelic things and mystery tales of magic and wonder and things. It was a wonderful time for us as kids, we were discovering all of that.
PR: It certainly has that feel about it, and now that you mention it, that all makes sense now. But that voice, so individual! But then you move into the 70s, and you're able to sort of soften that voice up a little bit with your top notes. I don't know how you do it, but you'll sort of hit a top note, and most people will sort of sit on that top note and let it finish abruptly, whereas you will hit the top note, and it's almost like you take your foot off the accelerator, yet the voice is still moving, or the air is still carressing the chords. It's clever.
JH: Well, I don't know how that's done (laughs). It just comes from the heart and it just comes out that way. And there are certain songs that you can...that are a real pleasure to sing. And I'm very lucky cause I think my voice has got stronger over the years.
PR: It has.
JH: It's definitely changed. But I listened...when I was remastering this stuff, I was listening to the older, you know, the first seven albums, and thinking that I wish I could do that style again. But I think so many things change...physical things, in your teeth and your whole...the way your sort of head resonates. And smoking, which I don't smoke now, and all that kind of stuff.
PR: How long did you smoke for?
JH: Oh, well, I smoked for...until I was in my mid 40s, and, yeah...
JH: Pretty much, like most musicians did. Like most people did, I should think.
PR: You're so lucky to have, you know, the breath control that you have after all these years if you smoked that long.
JH: Yeah, well, I hope so.
PR: Now, your solo albums have produced some very avant garde things over the years. Just love them. And of course, you've given plenty of commercial opportunities to our radio station playlists. But for me, I think you hit your peak with 'View From The Hill.' That was such a wonderful album. Would that be your favorite?
JH: Yes, absolutely. And it was when I was at my happiest, and playing with people that I really loved, and great musicians and very good friends. And it was a wonderful time. And I was in Italy, just outside Genoa, at a small recording studio there called Mulinetti, which is in a town called Recco, between Genoa and Portofino. And it was just absolutely exquisite, the whole experience.
PR: Well, it has so much musical integrity, and the lyrical intensity of the songs are all there. But one thing I do love about what you've always maintained all the way through, even up to the Christmas album, that you've always added that sort of, that little bit of ambiguity in your writing, so that you can take it as a straight-out love song, but you can also talk about universal love, truth and searching for meaning. All those things are there.
JH: Yeah. Well, I think they're in me, too.
JH: So that obviously comes out, sometimes completely unconsciously, but it just comes out that way.
PR: We're able to put our own interpretation, allowing us to sort of almost "own" the song that you've given us.
JH: Well, I do that with other people, and other people's music means a lot to me, so I'm very much aware how it feels to be the listener, and what's required of the deal between the recording artist and writer and the listener.
PR: 'Broken Dream,' on the album 'View,' did you break a string?
JH: What, you mean the (hums guitar part)? (chuckles)
PR: Sounds like in the - well, maybe it's just my copy - but it just sounds like there's a string that breaks through the track.
JH: No, I'll tell you what it was though. Because I did a demo of that at a small studio in Nice, where I did all of the guitar things on a crummy old little guitar that I'd bought at a local music shop, because I didn't have a gut-string guitar down in Nice at the time where I was staying. And I did the vocal as well, and when we came to re-record it properly with Phil Palmer and Paul Bliss, the Moodies keyboard player, I just didn't ever feel that I could do it any better. So I had to use the bits of the demo...
JH: ...and there were some faults on that, and some dropouts and a few clicks and boinks and pops and things, that are just there. But I still think that it was the right thing to do, because sometimes the demo is the right performance.
PR: On 'Troubadour' on that particular album, do you do all the sort of "country" licks? Do you do, like, the Allman Brothers-type riff?
JH: Uhh...I do most of it, but then at the end of it is...through the song I do, but then at the end of it it's like dueling guitars with Phil Palmer...
JH: ...and as each...we did that live, as each taking a bit and we did about three or four takes and then we just chose the take that we liked each...and...
PR: Ah, just exquisite.
JH: ...it was a great experience. Totally self-indulgent. But I really hope that people can find this album that we're talking about. It's called 'The View From The Hill' and I haven't found it on iTunes or anything, but it's still available. But I don't know where to say to people to get it.
PR: Well, I actually bought it in a record shop here in Noosa, actually...
JH: Oh, did you?
PR: ...on the Sunshine Coast some years back. And you know, I listened to it a few times and I wasn't sort of overwhelmed by it, but it took me awhile after listening to it over and over again to really appreciate it, and now it's my favorite album. But that's what you've done really in recent years, you know, when people listen to Justin they expect mellotrons and that old Moody Blues sound, whereas the new Justin Hayward, the Justin Hayward from the 80s on, gave us a whole treasury of different things of a far unique and different style.
JH: Well, I hope so. I think, just as we change as people, you know, our influences and our style changes.
PR: Well, you did it on....I mean, you did 'Broken Dream' on Capistrano and I thought that version was actually better than the version from 'View,' because I think you changed the guitar style too, didn't you, for Capistrano?
JH: I did.
PR: You used an acoustic guitar?
JH: Yes. I'm using a steel-string guitar, yes. It's probably a lot more reliable and a lot more in tune (chuckles), yes.
PR: That is such a brilliant DVD and CD, Capistrano, the quality on it is just amazing. It's hard to believe it's live.
JH: No, abso- ...we did nothing at all. In fact, it was so much....there was so much noise on each of the tracks that, it was Steve Taylor, who mixed 'View From The Hill,' I just gave it to him and did no sort of overdubbing or anything and then he just mixed it as it was, and I think he got a great sound.
PR: He certainly did.
JH: That's got Gordon Marshall on it as well, playing drums, who's on the 'War Of The Worlds' tour.
PR: Another thing, too, that I became aware of in watching the DVD, and that is, with you talking to the audience in between the songs. And I thought to myself, hey, you know, this is a different Justin Hayward from the man of the past who'd sit there or stand there with his guitar and hardly smile and communicate with the audience. But here is a guy who's sort of done the full circle, you are chatting in an almost sort of Parkinson's-style warmth with the audience. And I'm thinking, hey, why doesn't this guy get together a TV program, like Parkinson does, and get guests like rock gods, get 'em all on the TV and talk about their lives and their anecdotes. And wouldn't it be...I think it would be brilliant television.
JH: Well, YOU should do that! I'm gonna stick to the singing! (laughs)
PR: No, but you could do it so well because, you know, you've got the credibility, and they'd all flock to you.
JH: Would they? I don't know about that.
PR: I think they would. No aspirations there, huh?
JH: (chuckles) No.
PR: Fair enough, alright. Your singing's good enough anyway, we all would want that. What is your favorite solo album? Obviously you've said 'View'. Is there any others...'Moving Mountains' is another favorite of mine.
JH: Yeah, I like the first one as well, which is called 'Songwriter,' which was on Decca. And I think that was the essence of the, you know, of what I was about at that particular time, and I think it set the kind of tone for things that were to come.
PR: It's a wonderful album. And it's very "busy"...
JH: Yeah, sure.
PR: It's a much busier album than, say, 'View' and 'Moving Mountains'...
PR: ...although there's some busy tracks on 'Moving Mountains.' It's sort of interesting, you know, "Where is the Eden that we're looking for"...
JH: Ah, yes.
PR:...or "we're searching for." 'Forever To Be Alone' was a track you recorded way, way, way back.
JH: Yes, before I joined the Moodies, yeah.
PR: Yeah, and the demo got stolen or something. Is that right?
JH: Yes, it did. Yes, it turned up...it turned up just at the office. Somebody sent it to me. It had gone the rounds of people, kind of before the internet, but still it had gone the rounds of the sort of fan circle and nerdy kind of Moody people.
PR: Anyway, "Where is the Eden" turned up on 'Songwriter,' which is lovely.
JH: Yeah, yeah, absolutely.
PR: Magic. Now, 'Moving Mountains' ...moving on to 'Moving Mountains'...Jeff Wayne's 'Silverbird'...what did you first think when he presented that track to you?
JH: Well, he had an idea of the music, and then...it was the first time I'd ever really done the lyrics to somebody else's music, and so it was a completely new experience for me. I don't know whether it worked. I'm not sure that it did.
PR: It did work, it did work. It was unbelievable.
JH: Oh, thank you. But...
PR: Was it the...what instrument? Is that a balalaika, or a bouzouki, or what is that? (hums instrumental part)
JH: No, it's a guitar, I think.
PR: Is it a guitar?
PR: Wow, it sounds very, sort of Asian or something. But it's a terrific track, and it really builds, doesn't it? It's got a lot of...
JH: Absolutely, yeah.
PR: And you did a video on it as well.
JH: Yes, yeah, yeah. It was the first real sort of proper, produced solo video I ever did, yes.
PR: And some great orchestrations there from Peter Knight, and it was the last time, sadly, you worked with Peter.
JH: Yes, it was, yes. He was to die not long after that, but...and he was a wonderful man and a great part of my life and the Moody Blues' life.
PR: Yeah, who knows? Just love that track. And why the Clifford T. Ward track, 'Best Is Yet To Come?'
JH: I always really loved that song, and I got to know Clifford, and then...in fact, I knew more...I got to know him better towards the end of this life, and it's such a tragic end that Cifford has. One of the great British songwriting talents, really underrated. And I think it was just such a beautiful song, and just so simply put, and I'd always really wanted to do it. And Peter Knight liked it very much, and so we did it in one session, with me standing in the middle of Peter Knight and the orchestra, and just did it live, and that was it.
JH: Uh huh.
PR: Ahh...and what about the one that's on YouTube, on the...where you're actually doing it on a show? Was that Peter Knight in there as well?
JH: Um...no, I don't think so, but I've not seen it.
PR: Hmm...it's on YouTube and it's great. I think it's almost on a par, if not better than, the recorded version.
JH: Ah...I've not seen it.
PR: Yeah, it's fantastic.
PR: Justin, can we just wind the clock back, and take us to your "inner sanctum" in the Moodies' writing environment inside the studio? You're all sitting there. How did it work?
JH: Well, for me, I would always write before I got to the studio, so I was always the guy who'd sorta done my homework. And then, when we started an album, Moodies album, it would be, "Oh, well, Justin'll have a couple of songs, so we'll start with those." And that would sort of "boot the ball down the pitch," and then the other guys would write a lot in the studio as it was going on. And Tony Clarke was very influential in the first seven albums and the whole "concept" idea. And Mike, of course, with the mellotron. But then we'd work out the backing track, which was usually between Mike playing tambourine....it was a percussion section of Mike and Graeme, really. And then John and myself, on the bass and then me on guitar. And then Ray and Mike would work on it later, either flute or mellotron. And then the last thing would be the vocal harmonies. But it would be a kind of an all-out, all-in effort. And it was a great time for us, because we...Decca had recording studios that we were free to use them at will, whenever we wanted, and that was a wonderful thing to give to a band, you know. You can have whatever you want, studio time. They were lovely old music men that just said, "We don't know what you're doing, but it's great (chuckles), so just get on and do it, and here's the recording studio." Fantastic.
PR: What do you miss most about those days?
JH: Um...I think, the record company itself. They had that flexibility, and they gave us our heads, so we could record whatever we wanted, and they would release it and get behind it. I think that must be very difficult for kids nowadays. They have one album and if it doesn't make it, you know, forget it. But Decca were prepared to...after the first album, they really stuck by us. And it was wonderful, and then right until the end, right until Sir Edward Lewis died.
PR: Now, on your website, you were saying that you've been writing and recording, and you've been mixing. This sounds very exciting. Tell us more.
JH: Well, I've been mixing the Moodies' performance from the Isle Of Wight Festival in 1970, which is quite interesting. And then that's coming along quite well, and I think I've finished that now. I say "I think," because I've got to listen to it when I get back. But...so that'll be coming out as a DVD, I think sometime early next year. And then I've been writing quite a lot of new stuff and I've put a few demos down so...I don't know what's going to happen to them, but I'm sure they'll come out in some form.
PR: Well, we can't wait to hear them. Now, you turned 60 last year and...well, you know, you're an amazing person. You just seem to really enjoy what you're doing. I mean, what's inspiring you now?
JH: I think, the same things that's always inspired me as a kid, you know, things in life and my own kind of drive. And my own feelings about music and that music's a wonderful world of enjoyment and imagination, and I would recommend it to anybody (laughs).
PR: So, you don't ever get back to the hotel room after a show and say (plaintively), "What am I doing here?"
JH: Yes, all the time. Yeah, absolutely.
PR: Do you?
JH: Yeah (chuckles).
PR: And how do you confront that?
JH: Um...well, I take a sleeping pill! (laughs)
PR: (laughs) Oh, I love your work. You're amazing. Can I ask you just a couple of questions from some Moodies fans who have sent a couple of things to me?
JH: Sure, yeah.
PR: And they'd be honored if you could answer these. James asks that, if you had the choice...this is an interesting question...if you had the choice between a first solo #1 hit, excluding 'Forever Autumn' as you didn't write it, or one more Moodies #1 hit before you retire, which one would you take, and why?
JH: Oh, would I take a solo hit or a Moodies hit?
PR: Yeah, I don't know what he quite means by that, but I think he means, which is your #1 favorite song written? I think that's what he means.
JH: Oh, I think it would have to be a Moodies, and it's a song called 'I Know You're Out There Somewhere'....
PR: Yes, you always say that!
JH: ...that in concert people just love, and I think that would be my favorite. It got in the charts, but it should have been way up there, and maybe it'll have its day yet, some day.
PR: OK....Birdie/Troubadorable...you love the name?
PR: ...says that, why don't you include 'Forever Autumn' on your U.S. tours?
JH: Ahh...because I think that...it's not something that the other band feel that they...the rest of the guys feel that they could share, and so...
PR: I see...
JH: ...yeah, there's some feeling there. I think they're OK with me doing it where it really has been a sort of mega-hit. But I think in America, the Moodies is kind of a different thing, so...
PR: Cause a lot of people ask that all the time.
PR: Now, Old Duffer/Alan Long from the Midlands in England says, if he wrote a lyric for a song, would you compose the music and give all of his half of the royalties to charity?
JH: What was the que- ...what was that again?
PR: If he was to write the lyric of a song, would you compose the music and give half the royalties - his half of the royalties - to charity?
JH: I don't know, is the answer, cause I don't know what kind of writer he is! (both laugh) If he's brilliant, yes!
PR: I think he is, actually. He's certainly a great authority on the Moodies...
PR: ...and has so many lovely things to say about you, so I think he probably would do a good job on that.
JH: That's very kind of him. But I don't know.
PR: Anyway, he'll hear that answer. Now, in 1978 - the release of 'Eve Of The War' - John Lodge's voice in the background. True or not?
JH: Uh...no, not true, no.
PR: OK. Hobbies, do you have any hobbies? ...asks Moodymoose.
JH: Umm...keeping fit, my little boat, that...
PR: How do you keep fit? What do you do? Do you walk, run...?
JH: I run...
JH: ...and gym...and cycle and things like that.
PR: So you're running. Isn't that great!
JH: Yeah, fantastic. Been part of my life for the last 20 years now.
PR: Isn't that great! Well, that's probably why your breathing's so good.
JH: Yeah, I hope so.
PR: And also food...do you, you know, do you observe, you know, proper diet and all that?
JH: Yeah. I don't eat much meat. I eat a lot of vegetables, and when I'm home, a lot of vegetable soups and a lot of different veggie kind of things, and maybe meat only once or twice a week.
PR: Right...and any...do you drink wine?
PR: Tell me about your wine knowledge. I suppose you, living over in Europe, you're close to a lot of great wines.
JH: Yes, absolutely. And I find that in France, you can mostly just drink the house wine of a place and it'll be lovely. It's wonderful coming here, and I really do think the Australian, New Zealand and South African wines are probably better than the French wines now.
PR: Oh, we've got some magnificent wines here.
JH: Really magnificent, yeah. Really tender and soft and really nice, yeah.
PR: Well, it's good that you can enjoy a "Vins de Pays."
PR: Now, Cherrie asks that, when you sit down to compose a song, do you choose guitar or keyboard on which to compose, or is it a combination of all?
JH: I'm usually fiddling on a guitar and a song will start to form, or fiddling on a keyboard, so I can never kind of predict that. It just comes out of whichever instrument I happen to be fiddling about with at that particular time. Or "jamming" on, you know, if you like.
PR: Now, have you ever kept a journal or diary, for a possible book?
JH: Always, yes. Well, not for a possible book, but I've kept a diary for many, many years.
PR: Why aren't you prepared to write a book?
JH: Um...well, you know, I haven't done it yet! (laughs) I'm still going!
JH: ...you know. If I ever decide to pack it in, maybe I will, but I think really, what I have to...everything that I have to say is in the music.
JH: And no matter what anybody else writes, or if somebody else writes a book or anything like that, they don't know what they're talking about, cause it's only me who knows what the meaning of those songs really is.
PR: That's a very good answer. And it brings me to my next question. Which is, a lady called Barbara/MoodyBlueDragon, she said, what kind of books do you like to read? And what movies do you like to watch?
JH: Well, I get hung up on authors and I get...I love...I'm reading everything by a guy called John Banville at the moment. And I suppose I read my way through authors. That's the way that reading goes. Gregory Norminton as well, is a great writer and I like him. Uh...movies, I'm just a sucker for any kind of...anything like that. I loved 'Hairspray,' I went to see a little while ago. And on the stage the best thing I've seen for ages is 'Jersey Boys,' the story of the Four Seasons, which I saw on Broadway a couple weeks ago.
PR: Oh, I must see that!
PR: Yeah. Any more chances of symphony tours? ...asks Janice.
JH: Well, I think so. There's been a few inquiries from musical directors around the world, and I think if we could put something together, then that would be nice. We're committed next year to a British tour and European tour, and another American tour in March and April. So I think we'll have to take care of that first.
PR: Now, a good mate of mine, Shane, who lives down in Melbourne (who's just bought himself a little bookstore, by the way), has asked a couple of good questions here. He says, halfway through the....you were halfway through a next 'Blue Jays' album. Is that true? And there are tracks still...?
PR: That didn't happen?
JH: No, it didn't. In fact, there was nothing else recorded after that album. In fact, 'Blue Guitar' was actually a recording that I'd done when the Moodies were still together, back in '72 I think.
PR: But you did that at Strawberry, didn't you?
JH: Yes, I did that at Strawberry, yes.
PR: With Godley and Creme...
JH: So when we were looking for something to release, we had nothing at all, so I know there's nothing there.
PR: So what about...did you do any other stuff with Godley and Creme?
JH: Um...yes, I did do a couple of things with Godley and Creme, but I don't think they were for me. I think they were for other artists, and I've forgotten what they were at that time.
PR: So there's nothing sort of lying around that could come out, with you, from...?
PR: OK. And with the 'Blue Jays' situation...you went to America and you were gonna write some stuff with Mike?
PR: But then Mike decided that it was all just a bit too much and didn't want to go through with it. That's when you and John got together and did 'Blue Jays?' Is that right?
JH: Well, actually it was when Tony Clarke turned up and said that he really wanted to do it. And then John came along and then it seemed like the right thing to do. And it was a wonderful time for us, the three of us, yeah. I think it was the right thing to do in the end. Yeah, it started with me and Mike, and then I think Mike....Tony turned up, Mike dropped out, and then John came in. That's how it happened.
PR: Now, Hank B. Marvin came out here in 1986 and is now an Austalian citizen. And one of your mentors, I believe?
JH: Yeah, and a good friend, too. I saw him last week.
PR: Did you?
JH: Yeah, yeah.
PR: Oh great! Any chance of you coming out here and spending a bit more time with us?
JH: Oh, I would love to, dearly love to, yeah.
PR: That'd be great.
JH: I think, well, you know, there's talk about it for the Moodies again during next year, so we'll see.
PR: Fantastic. Anyway, look...you know, ages ago when we spoke, spoke a couple of years ago, you spoke of that search for personal freedom. "Personal enlightenment" were the words that you chose. Are you still in pursuit of those?
JH: Yes, absolutely.
PR: Do you think you've found them?
PR: Are you finding them?
JH: I think I might have found it, but I've got to attain it, which is...I've found what it is, now I have to attain it.
JH: Two different things.
PR: Well, Justin Hayward, you've given us so much pleasure over the years, and...really, I just don't know what to say. I just hope that you just keep on doing what you're doing, having fun doing it, because that's the main thing, isn't it?
JH: Yes, yes, absolutely.
PR: And come back and visit us again soon.
JH: I'll look forward to that.
PR: You're an absolute gentleman, and you're just one of the greats.
JH: My pleasure, thank you very much, you're very kind.
PR: Pleasure, indeed.