Delivered from the mythic Muskoka wilderness, the Juno Award winning Hawksley Workman
arrived on the scene just over a decade ago with his debut album For Him and The Girls. Intriguingly, Hawksley published a string of letters in an Ontario newspaper to an imaginary love, Isadora, capturing the imagination of the public and encouraging a devoted fanbase.

Workman’s production work (18 albums) has been attached to many successful artists including Tegan and Sara and Serena Ryder,and he’s played nearly a thousand of his own shows in over 15 countries as well as opening for heroes Morrissey, David Bowie, and The Cure. In Australia in Jaunary to promote his latest album Full Moon Eleven, Hawksley recently submitted himself to the Tone Deaf Q&A.

What’s your earliest memory of performing and who inspired you to start?

Christmas concerts in church. I fibbed and said I could play the drums (my dad had a set) when I was about 4 or 5. I really couldn’t play. So I went home and practiced for “Little Drummer Boy” and was on stage playing a few weeks later. The church gave me lots of opportunity to sing, play, and speak in front of people.

You must answer this question honestly or we steal your rider. What and where was the first gig you went to?

Glass Tiger, Molson Park in Barrie, Ontario. First time I smelled weed too…

‘Fess up. What records have you stolen from your parent’s record collection and why?

I’ve pretty much inherited most of my parent’s records. Music wasn’t ever something I used to separate myself. My dad was a record collector and music was constantly on in our house. I love a lot of music but some titles? Early Elton jJohn are probably my most faves.

What’s on heavy rotation on your iPod right now?

Dust I imagine. I haven’t really been listening to much music. But when I do flick it on. Al Stewart, Foster The People, E.L.O.

How do you find new music?

Usually listening to the CBC.

Do you have any particular ritual before you go on stage, or even a lucky charm you take with you?

I like drinking wine. I used to do yoga and wine. It’s more that I like to run or swim everyday when I’m on the road. That keeps me sane.

If you could curate your own festival, where would it be, who would be on the bill, how many people would you let in and what features would it have?

Funny you should ask. I’ve been thinking about building a 30-50 seat theatre at my country spot. Invite only. I’d cook for you then we’d have some wine and walk down to the theatre for a bit of a gig.

When you’re Rolling Stones Big, what are you going to request on your rider: don’t be shy. We want specifics!

To be honest I quite like my riders as they are. I love meat and cheese and wine. And that’s what I get.

Because it’s more fun to do things together, which living Australian artist would you most like to collaborate with? Tell us why?

To be honest, it’s Terepai Richmond. He’s one of my favourite drummers. One of the best I’ve ever heard.

What is your band’s music the best soundtrack for?

Remembering what’s good about things.

Hawksley arrives in Australian right after the start of the new year. 

Wednesday 4th January 2012: The Clarendon Guesthouse – Katoomba (NSW)

Thursday 5th January 2012: Brass Monkey – Cronulla (NSW)

Friday 6th January 2012: Notes – Newtown (NSW)

Saturday 7th January 2012: X & Y Bar – Brisbane (QLD)

Sunday 8th January 2012: Joe’s Waterhole – Eumundi (QLD)

Thursday 12th January 2012: Caravan Club (VIC)

Friday 13th January 2012: Northcote Social Club – Northcote (VIC)

Saturday 14th January 2012: Jive – Adelaide (SA)