Aussie rock legend Jimmy Barnes can do pretty well as he wants in his homeland. So, when it came to recording his 15th studio album, 30:30 Hindsight, he decided to share the love -- and the spotlight -- with some of Australia’s biggest stars of the last 20 years.
The likes of Keith Urban, the Living End, Powderfinger frontman Bernard Fanning, Tina Arena, Baby Animals, New Zealand rockers Shihad and former Noiseworks frontman Jon Stevens have collaborated with Barnes to rework his classic songs. Barnes' friendship circle extends well outside of Australasia. On the new album, Steve Van Zandt of the E Street Band revisits the song he co-wrote with Barnes, “Ride the Night Away,” while Journey join him on “Going Down Alone.”
Urban, who was raised in Caboolture, north of Brisbane, teamed with the Cold Chisel frontman on “Good Times,” originally a hit in 1968 for the Easybeats. The pair cut the recording while in the U.S. Barnes’ son Jackie James Barnes plays drums on “Good Times,” the video for which can be seen below.
Barnes has a deep emotional connection with “Good Times.” He sang alongside INXS frontman Michael Hutchence on a version of the song which was released back in 1986 and was used to promote the Australian Made festivals which featured INXS and Barnes, Mental as Anything, Divinyls, Models, the Saints, I’m Talking and the Triffids. Barnes has said he’s had problems performing the song since his good friend Hutchence died in 1997.
Produced by Kevin Shirley (Cold Chisel, Silverchair, Aerosmith), 30:30 Hindsight commemorates Barnes’ 30th year as a solo artist. Nine of his previous solo albums have reached No. 1 here -- more than any other Australian artist. The album was released Aug. 29 domestically through Michael Gudinski’s Liberation Music, and its on track to bow in the top 3 when the ARIA chart is published on the weekend. Barnes' national tour in support of it kicks off Oct. 1 at Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre.
In other Barnesy news, Cold Chisel has reportedly already cut nine songs for their next album, which is slated for release in mid-2015. “We started recording a new record with Kevin Shirley,” Jimmy tells Noise11.com. “He really knows how to work this band really well. He knows how to grab a performance fast. One of the things Cold Chisel is really good at is playing live and if we have to redo things over and over again, it starts to get staid. We don’t have to do that with Kevin”.
The quintessential Aussie pub rock group last year launched an imprint, Cold Chisel Music, and shifted their distribution from Warner Music to the Universal Music Group. Chisel came out of hibernation for the 2011 national comeback tour, Light the Nitro, which sold more than 300,000 tickets. Earlier, they'd switched managers when veteran industry execs John Watson and John O’Donnell came onboard to jointly oversee their activities.