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The Life Mag: I'm no One hit wonder.(ROP)

Birmingham Evening Mail (England); 5/4/2001

HE was in danger of being consigned to the 'Where Are They Now?' columns but The One and Only Chesney Hawkes has returned to the recording studio for a new single and album - and he'll be performing live in Birmingham next week.

The 29-year-old Londoner had a massive number one hit in 1991 with The One and Only, taken from Buddy's Song, the film in which he starred with Roger Daltrey.

But he had only minor chart success with the follow-up singles and seemed to disappear from sight.

On Tuesday he resurfaces with a half hour set at Brannigan's on Broad Street, with a new single Stay Away Baby Jane in the shops in the summer. An album will follow towards the end of the year.

'I've always been writing songs and playing, I just haven't been high profile,' Chesney reveals.

'I lived for a time in America and played in a four-piece band called Ebb for four years. We did shows in the States and in London but never signed a recording deal. Now I've got the band thing out of my system I feel it's time to go solo again.'

As well as performing, Chesney was hard at work writing songs, including collaborating with Tricky and penning Caprice's recent hit Once Around The Sun.


Howard Jones, Stuart Copeland & Bijou Phillips are among some of the other artists Chesney has written with, while girl group Hepburn, covered Next Life, co-written with Phil Thornally.

Another of Chesney's songs, Almost You, was in the film Jawbreaker starring Rose McGowen and Missing You Already was in the movie The Night We Never Met, starring Matthew Broderick.

'I enjoy writing but being on stage is what I really love,' he admits. 'I've been doing some student shows and they've been going really well.'

But does he still perform The One and Only?

'I think I'd be lynched if I didn't,' he laughs. 'I now look on that song as a blessing but for a long time I ignored it and wouldn't play it.

'Now, though, I realise it's a good song and I understand it's the one thing people know me for - and they love it.'

Having a massive hit at the age of 18 meant Chesney was hard pushed to better it but he has no regrets about how things have turned out.

'Everything happens for a reason and what happened with The One and Only has made me the man I am today,' he reasons.

In August 1995 he played the lead in a rock musical McGregor's Trap which premiered at the Edinburgh Festival and there was a cameo appearance in the Prince Valiant movie but generally Chesney has shied away from acting since Buddy's Song.

'It's not my first love - music is - but if the right part comes along I'd consider doing it,' he says. 'I'd prefer not to do another music-based film as I've already done that. I'd be looking for a proper acting role.'

Chesney obviously hopes his new record does well but he knows there will be a lot of hard work ahead if he has another worldwide smash.

'I haven't got back into the madness of being on the road yet and I am wary of what's ahead if I have to do long tours,' he admits.

'For the past few years I've been living an ordinary life. I've been married for four years and I've become very homely.

'I remember touring as being very tough so it will be something of a challenge when I have to do it seriously again.'


COMEBACK: Chesney Hawkes now and at the time of his No. 1

COPYRIGHT 2001 Birmingham Post & Mail Ltd


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Page Last Updated: 4th March 2010

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