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Arts and Entertainment

Colin Hay's America Sunshine Release Show at Largo Tomorrow Night

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Colin Hay at Largo tomorrow.

Colin Hay at Largo tomorrow.
In Hollywood, it’s all about who you know. In singer-songwriter Colin Hay’s case, he’s glad he knows Zach Braff. The Scrubs star was a Largo frequenter and a fan of Hay’s who asked the former Men at Work frontman to contribute a song to a little film he was working on called Garden State.

Hay's song “I Just Don’t Think I’ll Get Over You”--which became a staple in breakup CD mixes everywhere--won Hay over a legion of new fans who probably never even heard of a Vegemite sandwich.

Fast forward five years, and we find that last month Hay released his 10th solo CD American Sunshine, and is playing a show at Largo at the Coronet tomorrow night (Sept. 3). So how have things changed?

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“I’m finding that my audience is getting younger and younger,” he says during a recent phone interview. (Besides his soundtrack notoriety, Hay also made a cameo appearance on Scrubs that remains a fan favorites, and probably added to his younger demographic.) This isn’t an easy feat someone whose Men at Work CD album was released in 1981 and sold millions worldwide.

It’s taken him awhile to find his audience, but he’s in his element in smaller venues, chatting with people after shows, signing CDs and taking pictures. However, there is one thing he does miss: “Radio play would be nice.”

"Baby Can I See You Tonight" - Colin Hay

American Sunshine is the CD that reflects Colin Hay’s journey as a musician and lyricist so far, running the gamut from the quiet opener of "Oh California" to an all-out rock jam in "Please to Almost Meet." Six of American Sunshine’s tracks were recorded live in a two-day session in Nashville--rarely heard of these days.

“It was nourishing, rewarding and exciting,” he says, and gushes about the skills of the Nashville session players. “They play the song the way you want to hear it.” So good, in fact, were the Nashville musicians that he ran out of material to record. He had to go back to his hotel and finish a few songs until three or four in the morning.

Those tracks on the CD seem the most stripped down, most organic and best fitting a troubadour like Hay. But he’s not dissing LA musicians. “They’re equally skilled, but they’re musicians you’re familiar with and your friends. You just get into a different system at home.”

California’s been home for 20 years to the Scotland-born, Australian-raised Hay. For the majority of those years, he’s played Largo on a regular basis. “There was always something exciting about it [Largo on Fairfax].” but he’s looking forward to playing the new space at Largo at the Coronet. “It’s more theatrical, a better experience as a performer because you’re not battling a bar.”

“I appreciate I have a place to play when I’m home in L.A.”

Colin Hay Record Release Show
Largo at the Coronet
Thursday, Sept. 3 @ 
9 pm