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Progressive Rock Interviews

David Hayes

Interviewed by Gary Hill
Interview with David Hayes from 2016
It’s been a few years since we last chatted with you. What’s been new in the world of David Hayes?
Well I’m currently recording my fitth album, and I hope to release it by spring/summer of 2017. I’ve written and recorded seven new songs with Rollin Weary at I.V. Lab Studios and Greg Magers at The Attic Recording. I need to write a few more songs this summer and record those. I’ll demo and arrange the songs at home, then rehearse them with the band. Then we’ll record rhythm tracks together at the I.V. Lab. After that I’ll over-dub guitars and piano at I.V., then record vocals and produce more at the Attic. Trying to record and schedule these days is a little more challenging.

My producer (Greg Magers) and bass player (Graham Burris) moved to Nashville with their families along with the Attic Recording Studio. So now everything takes months to plan in advance. It’s worth it, though, because I can’t buy a decade and a half of musical chemistry. I recorded vocals for the seven new songs this spring in Nashville, which was my first time in that city. The upcoming album’s name is “The Attic” - sort of an ode to Abbey Road.

 I’m still teaching private music lessons six days a week during the school year to roughly 35 students. We had an awesome rock band recital this spring at the Beat Kitchen. I’m really proud of them and am trying to teach them to work together. We honestly can’t do this by ourselves and we all need help from each other.

It has been difficult to make it this far in music. I’ve had to play more solo acoustic shows due to lack of money and schedules. Many times I’ve had to pay my band for gigs out of my own pocket, which doesn’t help when I’m spending thousands on quality recordings to begin with. Sales are extremely low, and I’ve never broken even on an album. I don’t think all my sales combined from four albums have evened out the cost of one of them to produce. Streaming amounts to pennies. Spotify and other services keep placing my Music under another David Hayes, after countless emails. The cherry on top is playing shows where nobody attends, and that happens too often here in Chicago. All that being said, I can’t thank those enough who have been behind me. As tough as it has been to survive and fund my ideas I wouldn’t change any of it. I get to wake up and make music and art any day I chose.

What's ahead for you?
I need help and a great game plan. I currently do all of my booking, and really could use a booking agent. A publisher would be nice to help make waves. A manager would also be great, along with financial help for the album and PR. I’m at the point of no return and trying to keep my band together across state lines. I need to push this next album further than any of the others before. I’m not guaranteed any chances or opportunities so I’m doing my best to make this one really count.
What was the last CD you bought and/or what have you been listening to lately?
The last album I purchased was the Lumineers Cleopatra. I’ve been listening to a lot of St. Vincent, Muse, classic rock, classical and Chicago radio.
What about the last concert you attended for your enjoyment?
I saw the Avett Brothers last and saw David Gilmour before that. I’m seeing a lot of music and Cubs games this summer, and hoping to tour a lot next summer.
Are there any closing thoughts you would like to get out there?
If anyone is interested in assisting me please contact
MSJ: This interview is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2016  Volume 4 at
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