He was the guy all the girls wanted, and the guy that other guys wanted to be.
UK Pop star Limahl fronted the 80’snew wave band KajaGooGoo, turning out hits such as Too Shy, Ooh to Be Aah and Hang on Now before he was unceremoniously ousted from his own band by the other members. He returned triumphantly as a solo star and became the voice behind Giorgio Moroder’s hit theme song to the iconic kids movie ’The NeverEnding Story’. The man with the unforgettable two-tone blonde mullet is headed to Australia to perform for the first time as part of the fabulous Totally 80s tour hitting Oz in July. The mullet may be long gone, but Limahl (born Chris Hamill) has lost none of his charm as Dazz Hassan found out.
“I’m really excited, I’ve never performed live in Australia and never been to most of the cities. The last time I was there was 31 years ago…… & I don’t look a day older (laughs)”. (Having seen his recent pics, I can attest to that.Ed) “This (the tour) is going to be like a little family get together with fellow 80s performers, supporting each other on our journeys that we’ve had- it’ll be great.”
Although he’s kept a relatively low profile over the years, he’s been actively involved in the music industry in various capacities, and comes across a lot wiser to the intricacies associated with the industry at large.
We talk about the impact that music has on us, and in particular ‘that’ (80s) era, with its unique take on all things fashion. Regardless of the trendy fashions and interesting hairstyles, it was our era and as daggy as it may seem in retrospect, it was a lot of fun. Limahl puts it in beautifully nostalgic terms. “The things that happen to you when you are young, all of the firsts etc, they stay with you for life. They’re very important and usually associated with the music that was around at the time so I get the sense of that as to why my songs are still loved. When I see their faces when the first bars of Too Shy or NeverEnding Story start, I know that they are feeling something, probably quite powerful, from their past. That first kiss, first holiday, first love, whatever it might be.” This is exactly why music revivals of this kind need to keep on coming, to allow us to reconnect with our pasts and remember how things were. It is grounding, and allows us to apply our own kind of cognitive therapy to our otherwise busy adult lives.
Limahl managed to bury the hatchet with his old band mates after more than 20 years, reuniting briefly in 2004 on VH1’s ‘Bands Reunited program’. It was short lived due to contractual disagreements, but finally in 2008 the band’s original lineup were once again playing together. “It was powerful to be back on stage with the 5 original guys- we all had the same shared memory of everything we went through. The struggles, disappointments, financial hardship, all of it. We all realized that looking back perhaps we took things too serious, placed too much importance on it (success). We were young and naïve. It was lovely to come back with a different perspective and emotionally connect in a different way. It was a new challenge.” They sound better than ever, and hopefully we’ll see KajaGooGoo tour Australia in the future.
Now 57, Limahl is in peak condition not only vocally but also physically. He takes care of himself, doesn’t touch drugs or smoke, works out regularly and although has the odd drink, lives a healthy lifestyle. “ It doesn’t mean I’m boring, I still go out and maybe have a drink but don’t go crazy like I used to. As you get older you listen to your body. Nobody partied more than me in my 20s, but I feel lucky that my voice has held up well so I try to take care of it as best as I can. Staying healthy allows me to keep working and not disappoint people. “
We doubt that anyone could be anything other than in adoration of Limahl, and we’re sure Australian fans won’t be disappointed with the stellar lineup that Totally 80s has in store. As for Limahl, he is as timeless as the music he is known for- the living embodiment of a NeverEnding Story. Or am I being too daggy here?
Interviewed by Dazz Hassan
Get your tickets early at metropolistouring.com and the venues.