5 Questions with Rags #24 - Hawksley Workman

Hawksley Workman is the most interesting man in Canadian music. Now 16 albums deep (Not counting his various side-projects and producer credits), Workman continues to impress with his willingness to follow his muse wherever it takes him. You genuinely never know what you’re going to get when you pick up a Hawksley Workman record and that’s an exciting feeling. His latest, Old Cheetah, his first solo record in 5 years (Not counting the companion album to his one-man show The God that Comes) is another wholly different beast – one awash in bright synths and bouncy pop rhythms. Songs like “Make Up Your Mind Tonight” and “Teenage Cats” will bury their way into your brain and have you singing refrains under the cover of breath all day into dreamtime. “We’re Not Broken Yet” glides through the cosmos fuelled by frustrated wonder, floating on supple piano. With a voice stronger and more evocative than ever and lyrics to match, it’s another more-than-solid outing and one of the finest records we’ve been blessed with this year. I was lucky enough to get a few moments of the good Hawk’s time and get some answers to our silly questions as he prepares to take to the Canadian road on his Winter Bird Tour.

Full tour dates can be found HERE on his site.


1. Do you remember the first album you bought with your own money? 

I don't really remember the first one. My house was full of music and records, so it's a little blurry. I remember convincing my grandma to buy me the Best of Blondie... 

2. If you could spend the day with anyone living or dead, who would it be and what would you do? 

Probably my Grandma Hawksley.  We'd probably go to Swiss Chalet.

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The Rifflandia Journal - Days 1 & 2

Rifflandia is one of the high points of music calender every year in Victoria, It is a powerhouse that has grown in size and profile each year and this year was no different. I was there to cover it for the Martlet and while one of my round-ups was printed, this log, taken from my voice recorder was supposed to run in installments afterward but due to high levels of busy-ness around the Martlet, it sort of fell by the wayside. Rifflandia was a super fun experience (If not as stellar musically as some previous years) and I'm happy to have Rags Music as a means of sharing it with you all here. Relive the glory. Do it.

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Hawksley Workman and I chat for a third time. I love Hawksley Workman.

My friends, it's been a little while since you've heard from me. I've been busy preparing and executing my plans in and around the Rifflandia festival. It's the biggest week of music in Victoria every year (Though I still contend that the Victoria Ska Fest is the BEST week) and it's always a mightily distracting thing. But here I am with a delicious interview for you with my favourite guy to talk to and all-around dreamboat, Hawksley Workman.   I conducted my this interview, my third with Workman, in preparation for writing his profile in the Rifflandia guidebook. The 600+ word article I wrote ended up getting cut down to somewhere around 175, so the amount not in there is mighty. We talk about his involvement in and the creation of supergroup Mounties, using art to deal bridge emotions and machismo, the best sounding venue in Victoria and how he crippled me emotionally with "Piano Blink."

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I continue to be fascinated by Hawksley Workman. (Part 2)

Here is the second part of my interview with Hawksley Workman that was originally for Feedback magazine but after the disappearance of my editor the article went to the my familiar stomping grounds, the Martlet. We talk about his new project, Mounties, oppression and manipulation through media, and the changing social landscape of Canada. One more thanks to Hawksley for being so open and thoughtful during our exceedingly long chat.


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I am fascinated with Hawksley Workman again. (Part 1)

​This was the second time I talked to Hawksley Workman and the second time I got along exceedingly well with Hawksley Workman. Workman is an artist I respect immensely, someone who's work can be at once sprawling and artistic while being wholly accessible, if sometimes frustrating. This interview was done in February of this year and was supposed to be for FEEDBACK magazine here in Victoria, but my editor there seems to have disappeared so it sat on the shelf for a bit, finally finding its way to the Martlet.  This was a really long conversation, in fact this is Part 1, so now, for your reading pleasure...Hawksley Workman.

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