This week we interviewed pop-rock artist Chesney Hawkes, best known for his hit single ‘The One and Only’, the incredibly popular soundtrack to the film ‘Buddy’s Song’, in which he appeared as the title character at just 19 years old. Chesney lives in Los Angeles with his wife, daughter Jesse and two sons Casey and Indiana.
What was it like being at number 1 for 5 weeks here in the UK at such a young age?
It was an amazing time for me. It’s hard to remember a lot of it as it really turned into a bit of a blur, kind of like being in the eye of a storm. What I do remember was a lot of fun and traveling all over the world.
Your father Len ‘Chip’ Hawkes was the singer in the 1960’s band The Tremeloes. You followed in your father’s footsteps into the music industry, do you see any of your three children doing the same, and is it something you would actively encourage?
All my kids are creative in some way. My eldest son is a film maker, my middle daughter is very much into performing arts and my youngest loves to play piano, so I can see them all going into the entertainment business in some way. I will encourage them to follow whatever dream they may have.
Your number 1 hit ‘The One and Only’ continues to be a legendary hit. How do you feel when you hear it being played, and do you still enjoy singing the song live?
I do enjoy performing it, it’s hard not to when so many people obviously have a lot of affection for it. No matter where I am, the song always raises the roof. I am proud of the record. I didn’t play it for a long time through the 90s, but we kissed and made up and never looked back!
Share with us your favourite family recipe.
We are very much into juicing and smoothies in the Hawkes household. The kids like banana a and strawberry smoothies made with almond milk, My wife and I are a little more adventurous and regularly make green juices with kale, spinach, cucumber, celery, apple, carrots and ginger! Yum.
Tell us a bit about your new album, ‘Real Life Love’. What’s your favourite track and why?
This album is a real labour of love. My day job these days finds me in my recording studio in LA writing and producing for all sorts of different artists and projects. Every now and then, I write a song that I feel is too personal to let go and I put it on the ‘Chesney pile’. There are so many favourites on this album, I find it hard to pick one, but if I had to choose, I would go with a song called ‘Aeroplane’ which I wrote for my son Casey. The idea for the song came from when he used to ask me to make him paper aeroplanes. Now that he’s a little older, he rarely asks me. It’s really about appreciating what you have and stepping back to take it all in. because if you blink, that snapshot in time will be gone…
If you weren’t a musician, what career path do you think you’d have followed?
I’ve never even contemplated any other career choice, if music wasn’t an option it would have to be something creative. Perhaps I would have concentrated on my acting?
What’s the one children’s product you couldn’t have lived with out?
Nappies? Tough to live without them…Life would’ve been a bit s**t… literally!
What’s your idea of a perfect family weekend?
Just as long as we are together, we can do anything. We love to spend the day at the beach, we all love the cinema, or just an afternoon of boardgames. As I said, as long as it’s just the five of us together, that’s all we need.
Is it hard to be away from home when you’re on tour and do your family ever join you?
That is the hardest thing to deal with in my job. I am on tour with Ant and Dec at the moment and I have now spent 6 weeks away from my beautiful family. I do miss them madly, but unfortunately it’s just something we have to cope with. Thank the Lord for modern technology. Things like skype and whatsapp are a lifesaver!
How would you sum yourself up in one sentence?
I am the One and Only?