AUSSIE ICOS COLD CHISEL ARE ON TRACK TOMORROW TO HEAT UP GC600 WITH NEW AND OLD HITS
He’s a grandfather of 11 but he’s no lullaby singer, so Jimmy Barnes has taken to writing children’s books instead. The Cold Chisel frontman revealed his hidden talent while on the promo trail for the band’s eighth studio album, The Perfect Crime.
“I’ve written a couple of kids books but they haven’t been released yet, but I’m talking to publishers at the moment,” Barnes says.
The singer said he became inspired when he noticed his Scottish heritage emerging in his red-haired, blue-eyed, grandson Dylan.
“I’ve written a little Scottish book for him. It was just for fun, a story I used to read to him, but some publishers are really interested so we’re going ahead with that,” he says.
It’s only been a year since Barnes released 30:30 Hindsight, his platinumselling solo album which celebrated 30 years since his first solo record, Bodyswerve. But already he’s back with Chisel and a new album. Not to mention the autobiography he also has on the go.
“I’ve written about my life ... which will probably come out next year, I’m hyperactive, I drive my wife crazy, I never stop,” he says.
He might not stop but there came a time when it seemed like Cold Chisel were finished for good.
But the shock death of their drummer Steve Prestwich in 2011, less than two weeks after he was diagnosed with a brain tumour, pushed the band back together to release their 2012 comeback studio album, No Plans – their first in 14 years.
“When he finished, we thought we’d never play again. But the upside of Steve dying is that in the end it made us think ‘We took this for granted for so long, we want to play together and we should have done more with Steve. Let’s not do the same with ourselves’ ,” Barnes says.
Since then, with the addition of drummer Charley Drayton, the band have kept that promise and are back with rock’n’roll album The Perfect Crime.
It makes sense they’ve revisited the music that first inspired them.
“We gave ourselves a brief: we wanted to make a rock record and Don (Walker) says something about wanting to make a rock record like Little Richard and not like the Foo Fighters,” Barnes says.
“Where rock’n’roll evolved in the late 50s ... really that’s what we’ve always been influenced by.
“We were always just trying to be more Jerry Lee Lewis than anything else. It’s the music we listen to.”
Cold Chisel – with Jimmy Barnes (centre) has made a new album, The Perfect Crime. It comes from not taking their music and talents for granted anymore.