Interview with Caleb Hawley


Caleb Hawley 2

After graduating from Berklee College of Music with a degree in jazz composition, (now 28 year old) Caleb discovered his real passion was for song writing. He moved to New York City (where he currently resides with his wife Samantha) to pursue his music career.  In 2008 and 2009 Caleb received top honors in the prestigious New York Songwriters Circle Contest, and in 2011 Caleb made the top 50 on Fox’s ‘American Idol’. He’s solely written and fully produced 3 prior albums and is about to release his fourth self-titled album. Fans of John Mayer, Keb’ Mo’, and Lyle Lovett are sure to fall in love with Caleb’s angelic voice as much as we have! Read our interview with Caleb below, we discuss Samantha, The Rocky Mountain Film Festival, and Caleb’s addiction to ‘Breaking Bad’.

So you’re currently in Virgina, what’s your next stop?
“Well I am on my way to North Carolina playing a couple of shows, one in Greenville tonight and Charlotte tomorrow.”

I know everyone loves their fans but, is there a type of fan you don’t particularly like?

“Well I mean you don’t want crazy fans, like, they’re fun and you can get some good stories out of them, but they’re intense [laughs]. I did American Idol a couple of years ago and I got a few really interesting fans. One guy from like the Philippines was obsessed with finding out what kind of deodorant or as he called it antiperspirant I wore. So I mean that might be the kind of enthusiasm you don’t want, a little creepy, but in the end it’s also kind of fun because it was interesting. It’s just really funny to hear what random people would ask you or what they really want to know about you.”

What is the most memorable compliment you’ve ever gotten in your entire life?

“Haha…wow. Okay, most memorable complement in my entire life? Man…wow…it was probably something I got in like little league baseball. But, as far as a current thing that I think is pretty cool, I have a song that I actually wrote for my wife and I’ve been asked a couple of times to play it for people’s first dance at their weddings. That’s always been a compliment because I meant to write it and perform it for my wife Samantha (it’s actually called Samantha’s Song) only.  It’s kinda funny that I’m playing a song about Samantha at weddings for other couples. I just love the fact that people enjoy my music or enjoy my song enough to make it part of such a big moment in their lives. As far as like the biggest compliment ever I mean, yeah that’s extremely hard to answer, but probably something pertaining to like having a good curve ball when I was like 10.”

What is your favorite song off of the “Steps” CD and why?

“Probably a song called Every Shade of Gray. I like it because it’s a really relatable song, and it’s a song I wrote for myself. It’s about trying to be as content as possible. I also think it has like the most D’Angeloesc vibe compared to any song on that record so I’m happy with how that came out.”

Is there any TV series out there that you’re totally addicted to right now?

“I’m actually trying not to get addicted to TV shows anymore because I just finished ‘Breaking Bad.’ I’ve been writing a show kind of like a musical/dance/thing for a high school about addiction to pain pills, and while I was like researching and studying it online it lead me to Breaking Bad, which I had heard was a really good show. I literally watched like all five seasons in two weeks. It’s in an incredible show and I was so pumped about, but I was also trying to finish it so I could get my life back [laughs]. And, apparently when I thought it was over there’s still like one last run of it this summer, so I’m excited about that.”

What is your favorite place that you’ve gotten to perform so far?

“I think my favorite place is probably the Rocky Mountain Film Festival out in Colorado. It’s an amazing space. You have like 3,000 people out in a field on tarps and you’re performing while staring at mountains. It’s completely beautiful. It’s a festival that I’ve actually grown up going to, so when I got invited to play there it was a very cool high point in my career. It was incredible getting to play at a place I’ve idolized and wanted to play at for years. I’m really glad  I got to do that last summer. I actually didn’t know how it was going to turn out, because a lot of times when you play outdoor festivals there’s a lot of disconnect  from the audience since you’re way up high on the stage and they’re far away outside in the sun. This festival is really an exception to that, so Rocky Mountain Film Festival in Colorado was definitely my favorite. It was amazing that’s for sure.”

Which of your songs was the easiest for you to write?

“Probably a song about my dog called Who’s Your Doggie? It’s really just a song about the relationship between my dog, my wife, and me. It came out pretty naturally. I just remember I wrote that song in like ten minutes. I’ve lived this process of having my wife love my dog more than me, or so it seems, so it was really easy to put on to paper.”

Which of your songs is sometimes misinterpreted by your fans?

“A lot of songs could be misinterpreted, because I write a lot of times not from my own perspective. I have a song called My Own Two Feet, and in the bridge I talk about having kids to feed and I’m not talking about myself, but because of that people often think that I have kids. People will often say, “Oh, how’s your kids?” Then I have to tell them I don’t have kids, but it’s good to know they were paying attention, ya know?  That’s probably one of the most misinterpreted songs. In general a lot of my songs are because I write so often from other perspectives. It’s fun to like put yourself in someone else’s mind, right?”

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