Hall & Oates Talk 'Live From Dublin' DVD, Why They Still Tour Together
Daryl Hall & John Oates had a feeling their July 2014 show at the Olympia Theatre in Dublin -- just three months after the duo's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction and surprisingly their first performance ever in Ireland -- might be special. So they decided to roll out the cameras to capture what became Daryl Hall & John Oates: Recorded Live From Dublin, which comes out on DVD and Blu-ray March 31 after a one-night-only theatrical screening on Thursday [Feb. 19] via Fathom Events.
"I knew from the beginning it was going to be a special night, and that's what it turned out to be," Hall says during a conference call with reporters. "I had played in the Olympia Theatre back in the '90s as a Daryl Hall show, and my memory of that place was it was an outrageous concert. There was something about the crowd, about the room that was at that time very magical to me and very special. When I found out we were playing there, and Hall & Oates had never played in Ireland before -- which is strange but true -- I suggested we record and do something with it."
Oates, meanwhile, says he was "surprised and not surprised by the audience reaction" during the show. "The only reason why I was surprised is I had never played that particular venue. I knew it was going to be an exciting night...and the venue was so cool and legendary. All the ingredients were in place for a great night and a great performance, and I think we really captured it. I'm so glad we committed to filming this particular show. You put all your eggs in one basket, 'This is the night we're gonna film the concert, let's hope it's a good one,' and all the stars aligned for that."
Playing live, of course, is what Hall & Oates do these days; the duo has not released an album since 2006's Home For Christmas, and at this point there's no intent to revive that aspect of their partnership.
"We've grown into a place where we're very individualist, more than we ever were," says Hall. "We are our own people. I don't think either one of us has a desire to sit in a room and try to write a song with the other guy; we didn't even do that that much through our career. If I want to write or record a song, I just go and do it, and so does John. It's just one of those things; people move on, time moves on, people develop, they grow as people, they become more individualistic as they grow older. All those factors are contributing to the separateness of it."
Both men are certainly keeping busy with their own endeavors. Hall is continuing his popular music TV show Live From Daryl's House and is working on a new solo album, the follow-up to 2011's Laughing Down Crying, which is targeted 2016 release. Oates began a digital singles release series in March of 2013 that led to his 2014 solo album Good Road To Follow, and he also released the DVD Another Good Road "to extended that music because I was very proud of it." He also tours actively with his own band.
The Hall & Oates road show goes on, however. The two have six spread-out dates currently on their calendar, starting Feb. 26 in Bethlehem, Pa., and they say that's something they'll likely continue for the foreseeable future. "Y'know, we began to play live from the moment we got together; in fact, that's how we got together," Oates tells Billboard. "We got together as a reaction to what we were doing with other people. Our recording came after that. So, really, we were a live group from the very beginning...and to this day we still are, and one of the reasons I think we're still around is that we never stopped playing live, ever."
Hall adds, "We're friends first, partners second. We did all that work together through the '70s and '80s and into the '90s and even more recently, really, and we have this body of work that we really enjoy playing -- and it's hundreds of songs. We like doing it; that's the bottom line. We like having a band together. We like playing our songs that we've created together. Even though we're not doing anything currently together as far as new things go, what we've done in the past is certainly enough to sustain us."
Theater locations and other details for the screening of Daryl Hall & John Oates: Recorded Live From Dublin can be found at FathomEvents.com.