St. Martin’s PressWhen you’re half of one of the all-time best-selling musical duos, you’ve got a lot of stories to tell. That’s why John Oates penned his memoir, Change of Seasons, documenting his years with Hall & Oates, and his life in general.
Oates tells ABC Radio, “I hope [fans] get a little bit of insight into me as an individual, because my entire persona…out there in the world is really tied up with my partnership with Daryl [Hall].”
“That’s not something I will ever deny, but at the same time, I’ve got an interesting story to tell,” he notes, saying writing the book had him “walking that tightrope between telling my personal story and telling my version of the Hall & Oates story.”
A former journalism student and avid reader, John thought writing a book would be a “great challenge,” but found it differed from the instant gratification of writing a song.
“I write a song…and I can play it for people and get an immediate reaction,” he tells ABC Radio. “With a book, especially a project that takes two years, you’re kind of writing in a void.”
The book certainly is full of great stories, especially the ones behind some of the duo’s hits. Take “Maneater” — John says it was inspired by a gorgeous, foul-mouthed woman he saw at a club.
“I thought, ‘Man, she would just chew you up,'” he recalls. “I got back home, and I said, ‘She will chew you up…She’s a maneater!'”
But then, he and Daryl decided the song would be a “lot cooler” if “Maneater” was a metaphor.
“It was the New York City in the ’80s,” he reveals. “Crazy greed…was kind of in the air. And we said, ‘You know, this is a metaphor for the city itself.'”
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