Daryl Hall rarely listens to his own music for pleasure or gives in to nostalgia of being one of the all-time great American singer-songwriters in history.
The attitude has kept Daryl working, but it's also meant that he's accumulated a fair bit of gold that's never been granted the appreciation it's due.
On his latest release, BeforeAfter, Daryl unveils his first-ever retrospective album — a two-disc collection of all-star collaborations, never-before-released gems and rarities, going as far back as his Robert Fripp-produced debut solo album in 1980 to tracks from his Live From Daryl's House television series in the 2000s.
Daryl tells Q104.3's Out of the Box with Jonathan Clarke that listening to BeforeAfter is a bit of a time warp for him; he's not accustomed to hearing his studio work after it's completed.
"I can remember very well every moment that is in these songs," Daryl says. "You know, I never listened to my own music. The past is the past, but in this case I did. I had to put an order together and I chose to not do it chronologically; I chose to do it by mood and flow and everything, and to actually make the whole thing as if it were a single album.
"It just reminded me of the amazing times I had with these really, really talented people, and how many good things came out of it. That's really what I take away from it."
In the spirit of looking back, Daryl provided some answers to long-standing mysteries about his career — like, did Michael Jackson really steal the groove from "I Can't Go for That" to make "Billie Jean"? or did Eddie Van Halen really ask Daryl to join Van Halen?
Regarding the latter question:
"Well, yeah (laughs). Actually, yes," Daryl says. "I knew [Van Halen] really well. We actually shared some crew and things like that. Eddie came to a show with Valerie [Bertinelli] — this goes back, you know — and David [Lee Roth] had just left the band.
"Eddie said, 'Do you want to join Van Halen, man?' He was half-joking, but I think he was serious. I really do believe he was serious. I took it seriously. I went, 'Meh, I think not. I think I've got my own s--t going on.'"
Listen to the full conversation via the player at the top of this page.
BeforeAfter arrives April 1 via Legacy Recordings. Pre-order it here.
Daryl Hall will launch a U.S. tour with special guest Todd Rundgren, starting April 1. Get all the tour dates here.
Watch Daryl and Todd Rundgren perform "I Saw the Light" via the player below!