don’t worry

Colin Hay has been on my radar for practically my whole life. Early hits from his band, Men at Work, have been on the radio since before I was born. The lyrics to “Land Down Under” fed my early fascination with Australia, and as a teenager Pop-Up Video finally confirmed what it was to chunder. Then came Garden State. Hay’s “I Just Don’t Think I’ll Ever Get Over You” was a standout on a stellar soundtrack. Continuing his partnership with Zach Braff, Hay popped up on Scrubs both as background music and in person. On May 20, 2010, at the Majestic Theater in Madison, WI, I was lucky to experience a sixteen-song set by Colin Hay, replete with stories and a healthy dose of humor.

Walking out to a ridiculously laudatory introduction (“multi-multi-multi-platinum”), Hay spent the first fifteen minutes or so of his set dancing and making jokes about going to discos and not giving a hoot about where he played the night before. While remotely teasing those from Milwaukee, his guitar strap failed, and Hay quipped, “That was God. God is from Milwaukee.” After a bit more chatter, Hay strummed a few notes and then proclaimed, “Oh fuck, it’d better be good,” before immediately launching into another story (and quickly giving it up to play instead).

The rest of the night was similarly humor-filled, as Hay is a natural ham. He dressed down hecklers, posed and winked for a woman who wandered in front of the stage to take pictures with her phone, and jested with asides like, “We won a Grammy 28 years ago. I can’t wait to see what happens…” All of Hay’s joking aside, the highlight of the night was his superb song-writing and talent for performing.

Hay’s voice is as good as it ever was, and his high notes scratch an itch you didn’t know you had. His guitar-playing is nimble and the chords have presence, but it’s in his songs of ill fate (“I Just Don’t Think I’ll Ever Get Over You”, “Maggie”, “I Came Into Your Store”) where he gets you in the gut. Tender and real, his lyrics hit a glaring truth without losing the lingering sense of what was once good and what could have been.

Said Hay, “It’s all about the details, the smaller, the better.”

Check out the official Colin Hay site here.
Click here to see photos from the show.

SET LIST: Wayfaring Sons / Who Can It Be Now? / Conversation / Into the Cornfields / Oh California / No Time / I Came Into Your Store / Land Down Under / Going Somewhere / There’s Water Over You / Maggie / Prison Time / I Just Don’t Think I’ll Ever Get Over You / Beautiful World / Overkill / Waiting For My Real Life to Begin

listen up: fall asleep with your headphones on

Here is a new mixtape for your listening pleasure. It’s kind of a cheat as it’s 1.25 years old, but most of you have never heard it before. It’s called Fall Asleep With Your Headphones On and I made it for my friend Tim (though it is about someone else entirely). It is an excellent breakup playlist.

Fall Asleep With Your Headphones On
01| Death Cab for Cutie – Marching Bands of Manhattan
02| The Postal Service – Brand New Colony
03| Frou Frou – Let Go
04| Brand New – Jaws Theme Swimming
05| Matt Pond PA – The Summer Is Coming
06| Between the Buried and Me – Colorblind
07| The Honorary Title – Everything I Once Had
08| Dashboard Confessional – Remember to Breathe
09| Rocky Votolato – Suicide Medicine
10| Colin Hay – I Just Don’t Think That I’ll Ever Get Over You
11| Motion City Soundtrack – My Favorite Accident (acoustic)
12| Fall Out Boy – Nobody Puts Baby in the Corner (acoustic)
13| Saves the Day – Take Our Cars Now
14| Ted Leo – Since U Been Gone
15| Rhett Miller – Your Nervous Heart
16| Ben Lee – How To Survive A Broken Heart
17| The Beatles – You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away
18| Jamie Cullum – High & Dry
19| The Format – A Mess to Be Made
20| Dog’s Eye View – Umbrella

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