Q&A Scene: Claude Hay

Tell us about your new single/ album/ tour?

Just finished the album tour at the end of last year for “Roller Coaster” and it’s the first one I recorded with a full band. I think I did it purely to stop myself from going mad as the past three albums have been solo. It was a breath off fresh air to do.

What’s your favourite work at this point in time?

Definitely the latest album, I tried a bunch of new things which is always the best thing to do. Whether it works or not you have to keep it fresh.

How would you describe your sound in food form and why?

mmmm, deep fried battered, doused in some heart attack waiting drippy sauce, or maybe that’s just what I want for lunch. I suppose I should say its organic, natural and 100 percent fat free but that would be a lie.

Tell us a quick, on the road or studio, anecdote.

I stole all of Joe Bonamassa’s wine back stage once…..ok may be I didn’t steal it but it sounds better.

What, or who, inspires you?

Could be anything really, I find you can’t control that part to a degree. Human wise Seasick Steve is a pretty cool and positive dude, he just seemed like he was always having a blast.

Which song do you wish you wrote?

Anything that’s not ‘Indie jingly guitar’ I will be pretty happy.

What’s next for you?

Doing a tour overseas again and hopefully another album if there’s time.

What’s your scene?

Rock, Blues, Groove stuff, hold the alfalfa.


Hailing from the Blue Mountains near Sydney, award winning Australian solo artist Claude Hay invokes the best of stomping traditional blues, hard rock and booty-shaking funk, all delivered with slide guitar chops to burn and a vocal range to match. Claude is perhaps the world’s ultimate Do-It- Yourself musician – initially forging his live sound on the back of looping technology which allowed him to create a band vibe without the band. This approach has seen this fiercely independent artist build an audience for his music globally with the release of three award-winning home-made albums. His fourth album “Roller Coaster” released September 2016 saw him form a band, hence his song writing became unhindered from the constraints of looping which allowed him to finesse his rock-blues, come funk-hillbilly mojo to another level.

Hay’s accolades include album charting at #9 on USA Billboard Blues charts following appearing on USA’s National Public Radio Network (weekly listenership of 27 million ), ranking #5 on Amazon’s Blues albums of the year, winner of Best Male Vocalist and Best Song at Australia Blues Music (Chain) Awards, Winner of Best Live Act at Australia’s Independent Music Awards (MusicOz) and supporting the likes of Joe Bonammassa and Seasick Steve.

Hay tours Europe regularly, having landed the biggest blues festivals in Netherlands (Zwarte Cross, Moulin Blues and more) and Belgium (Blues Peer) as well as Poland, France, Germany and USA – where he started recording his 2012 album “I Love Hate You” at the legendary Sun Studios of Memphis.

It’s become a tradition for Hay to build a new custom guitar for each recording he does. There’s ‘Betty’, his double-necked guitar/bass which he made out of a kitchen benchtop for 2010’s Deep Fried Satisfied; there’s Stella, his ‘Cigar Box’ guitar which started its life as a six dollar baking tin featured in 2012’s “I Love Hate You” and then there’s Jeri made out of 10 litre Jerry Can for 2016’s album “Roller Coaster”.

In his 4 year hiatus between albums of 2012 and 2016, Hay branched out with his hard-rock side project “The Gentle Enemies”, also produced a live DVD of the One Man Band show and worked behind the scenes mixing tracks for other artists including Eddie Boyd and The Phatapillars, and The Swamp Stompers among others.​

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About Mary Boukouvalas 1442 Articles
Mary is a photographer and a writer, specialising in music. She runs Rocklust.com where she endeavours to capture the passion of music in her photos whether it's live music photography, promotional band photos or portraits. She has photographed The Rolling Stones, KISS, Iggy Pop, AC/DC, Patti Smith, Joe Strummer, PULP, The Cult, The Damned, The Cure, Ian Brown, Interpol, MUDHONEY, The MELVINS, The Living End, Foo Fighters, Smashing Pumpkins, Rage Against The Machine, The Stone Roses –just to name a few - in Australia, USA, Europe and the Middle East. Her work has been published in Beat magazine, Rolling Stone magazine, Triple J magazine, The Age Newspaper, The Herald Sun, The Australian, Neos Kosmos, blistering.com, theaureview.com, noise11.com, music-news.com. She has a permanent photographic exhibition at The Corner Hotel in Richmond, Victoria Australia.

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