Huey Lewis' News: Giants Fan Has New Album
Hi this is John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle and what a special honor to have Huey Lewis on our giant splash podcast. He grew up in the bay area giants fan in their early years in San Francisco and played a lot of ball himself. His career is nothing short of amazing as a singer Songwriter. And after and Huey Lewis and the news of a new album weather which we discuss along with some other cool stories on his music but I missed the first of a two part podcast. Qe share some great baseball stories. About Willie mays Bruce Bochy Dave Righetti. Lon Simmons is amazing renditions of the National Anthem and much more we get into little forty niners and maybe his days as a softball player. Which all too familiar with enjoy part one. Well thanks for joining me. Healy what a pleasure man How you doing these days Well you know. Stay at home. Mostly I live in Montana at the time so we have we have a little larger place to to shelter in place but But we're we're playing pretty cool out your do well. You've always been a busy guy doesn't matter what decade what era hand you've always taken life to its fullest but you're sheltering now so what keeps you busy these days while. I'm a veteran reading. My hearing collapsed to two years and four months ago and so am able to music as cacophony for me right now so and television. It's Kinda hard to watch. I can hear you because I'm have hearing aids a Bluetooth and all that but But I I've been reading a lot actually in and working around the ranch. Wow so what do you read right? I just finished a Michael. Both fields book on Michael Booth Coke Guitar King A- Michael Bloomfield life in the blues. Really great I recommend to everybody Dan Dan wrote it. It's it's wonderful. Not only about Michael. But about the era of the late sixties and early seventies and in San Francisco allotted. No valley lives in valley and stuff and the butterfield blues band. Were a big influence on me. So I've been is a long book. It's over seven hundred pages it's It's it's really great. One Guitar King. Yeah Mike Bloomfield major inspiration for a lot of people in the bay area back in the day. Well you have a wonderful new album weather and I'm hearing it. I'm loving it There's so much they're a wonderful assortment of Blues of R&B Funk Rock even country which familiar yes. That's you though The you know lot of your albums are like that looking back We're kind of all over the place in terms of types of music and types of inspirations by the way I think that's fair to say we always have diverse diverse tastes there in even even our snorts record at Honky tonk blues on it different. Stop but Yeah and I've always been warned against that but but it just comes naturally. I mean you write songs that that the Muse gives you come into your head. So that's that's kind of the way that goes but the this record was you know. We were D- compiling. It'd been awhile since last original record for several reasons number one. We're not. We're not all prolific. There's ripe old age number two we had you know we're doing seventy five shows a year and with travel. That's a Lotta days on the road. We have lives so there wasn't a lot of time and also it's. It's tough to come up with as you know was ideas when you've already had a few so But what we were doing was compiling. Saw As we've had a song wrote a song we'd record it put it in the can and just compiling. Can we had ten of them and then going to release the records And figuring it didn't matter how long that was as long as the van was good and we were we were actually better than ever We just wait to ten songs and as long as we're good we stay away did matter how long we stayed away as long as it was good. And so we have these seven things recorded and mixed and my hearing collapse so We waited kind of a year. See if I could if that was going to remedy itself and it didn't so We thought we just you know. Share them with fan so we release it yes. This was years in the making like you said seven songs and I'd like to hit on all that but I remind that this is actually a baseball. Podcast which is also in your wheelhouse also back in the day. You are a pitcher and shortstop and you grew up in the bay played a lot of ball. You love the game. You grew up in Marin County following the game. The candlestick days The peak time for a lot of legends and you saw a lot of them What a great era. What what was that like in your youth following baseball in the Bay and playing the game here was fantastic. I mean I remember. You know I remember the mccovey. Shot the bobby. Richardson in the World Series vis a foot higher we win. I remember may sliding into flame the dodgers in the in the in the pennant playoff kicking the ball out of Johnny Roseborough Glove. I remember the VIC words cats. You know all that stuff so we were a big giants fan and and you know. Watch maze in his heyday. It just doesn't get any better as you know. I mean he was renowned. No right wasn't he who is selected him the best player ever. Yeah Joe Posinski of the athletic their one hundred and Lo and behold ruth was number two not number one which is probably correct right. You agree with that don't you? Well the thing is for two reasons number one they say well babe hit more home runs than other teams and he was a pitcher and I would say well. If maze were pitcher in the twenties and thirties. Baby he would do the same thing. He had a great arm But no men of color was allowed to play a major league game of course and and you know as a result I mean the the babe actually played. You could say inferior competition. I mean when mays came along they were whites and blacks and Latinos right The baby never had to play against Negro League teams except in exhibitions. Or whatever. So you could say. Willey's competition was a lot more than the base no question and and he played the whole game right. I mean great. He was a great outfielder. He could run hits the threat on the basis of his his. His base running alone was amazing. You know amazed I mean. He played every aspects and also importantly made his teammates much better. It was a wonderful teammate. Yeah exactly what I got. I got to play golf with him. A couple of times and And he was a great teammates. Golfie and I play these my drummer Bill Gibson and Bob Barr is no longer with but And I mean maze was into it like ten. You know he was so great and he was pumping me up and we're talking and I mean it was. It was like it was like the last game of the world series are little golf game and mammoth you fine. I mean and this was late in his life and he was just just fun as as I'm sure he still is. He's he's always been a kid you know yeah and was this at Pebble Beach Share Nights. Okay San Francisco. Yeah well have a poll beach story. They'll be it I I have. I've played in the world series in this. I'M GONNA give my pal John Richter shout here. Who's the big giants fan lives in Britain Marantz and is golfing friend of mine and he and I were playing at the world series of Golf Sick? It's called the Pebble Beach and we're pretty with Don Robinson because the caveman back in the day the picture and and pitchers and And John Rector says was caddying for me just because we're having fun down there he says all candy for you and so we're pretty down. Robson and John says the Dan he says. When was the last time we talked out? Rose and he says Oh. I haven't talked to him in a while but I'm going to have to next week. Is You know we're going to get fired up again for spring. He says when you met when you when you talk to them mention Dave Righetti because Righetti was playing out his last year with the Yankees. And he's The bay area boy he says and I knew that because Righetti had come to early Huey Lewis a news. Gigs in Palo Alto and we. You know we're we're kind of fans as he was kind of a fan of ours and so on and and That lunches Oh yeah really. No kidding says yeah Well I will then. So next thing we know Giant China Righetti. And and now I read in low cones columns. When he interviews out Rosen? They said why did you sign. Righetti wealth shoot. He's a bay area guys that I never even thought of until Don Robson mentioned it. Oh my goodness so John. Rick Bell was responsible for for rags. Coming over to the giants. That's good that's that's that's our story we're sticking to it. He was a big factor in that in that ninety three team. That won one hundred and three games does get. How manages was the pitching coach for five? Yeah you know. That's that's pretty amazing. He and Ron Wada's believable staying power. That just doesn't happen Because once a manager comes in and he cleaned house as we see right now and brings in his own guys is is loaded still there. Yeah he's only been over mid forties on that stash should date. They should make him manager. I always say yes. I remember game. When Bush got thrown out and manage the rest of the game in fourteen fifty innings and use everybody and it was a managerial coup de Gras and fantastic's and I call boats the next day what he said really know kitten voters as he could definitely manage. Hey he proved it in the minors. When you're ace. Bench coach On Championship teams Is Available and in your you know your often the next guy up but for whatever reason it didn't happen for him when they never they never they never they never go within from within they never elevates from within the always get. Somebody else seems like. Yeah not since Why is that well? It's probably because general manager might want to put his own stamp on things. I mean you could go back to dusty Baker who was a coach share before he became a manager didn't does he coach for the dodgers. All right well. He coached under Roger. Craig Okay Okay. Yeah and you go back to Roger Craig the national anthem through Acapella. Beautiful stuff over the years from candlestick to the new ballpark with the forty niners with the giants. I think you created a lot of lasting friendships with your associations would bay area sports teams but How how did you get that GIG And how how did you start doing the anthem in these parts because was classic stuff whenever you came out to the park and it was often in the postseason on a national stage as well. Yeah I mean I think the first one we did was for the AIDS and they taped it and then they then they kept playing did campaign the tape. Yeah and so And the idea and then you know we got to do it. James niners asset. And we've never done a world series though because the world series has always handled from the office in New York we always we always do the NFC championship game but when it went to the series New York would say thank you very much. We'll take it from here and you know it'd be Mariah Carey. Well were you not scheduled to do game? Four and eighty nine before the earthquake hit prior to game three. We were there but we didn't do the welcome you're GonNa but we didn't do the answer. Yeah Yeah Yeah but Yeah that was the thing about doing the anthem is. It's only you know it's nerve-racking 'cause it's hard and there's a delay and all that kind of stuff and we do it acapella which is hard also but The good news is there's only two minutes long and you get the best seats in the House. Really seemed to have fun with it and you were loose around the field and clubhouse but if I'm not mistaken you can't have had game face once it's not easy. It's not easy number one and in the park with a with a delay that comes out you saying and then you hear your voice come out like a second later. He has strange whether concerts colder than candlestick park concerts. Colder than adults per se. Oh we played outdoors Salt Lake City in the for the for the Olympics the Winter Olympics it was like twenty eight degrees. We played outside. We'll be back with more Huey Lewis right after this short break. Hey Audrey Cooper here editor in chief of the San Francisco Chronicle and we've ramped up the news coming at you from fifth emission except not the physical for the mission since we're all working at home the fifth and mission. That is our flagship news. Podcast were interviewing anyone with anything to say about the corona virus so that you have the latest information as soon as we know it so check it out. Fit The mission wherever you get your podcasts. Oo Say Star spangled That was Huey Lewis and the news with the national anthem before game. Three of the eighty seven playoff series giants cardinals at cal State Park. Welcome back to giant splash. Where speaking with you Louis and Huey Bob. Seger tweet it out. After alkaline died recently that really loved. K-line that K Line and maize were two of his favorite players. Have you had some pretty good conversations with other musicians over the years about baseball because th- There's so many folks like yourself in the industry who loved the Game Yet wrought Michael? Keaton is become a friend. We fish together. He lives in Montana to and and he's the Pittsburgh pirates fanatic. So we talk. We talk baseball a lot. There and I remember the old We remember the fires back in the day was startling. All deal out that they're great arezzo and he's he's still open they're gonNA return but Yeah but but LOT LOT MUSIC AND MUSIC. Sports are interesting to say. You know. We're a lot of like we we we spend a Lotta time in coliseums and take showers together and I always hear musician musician saying man. I love the game. I wish I could play that I hear ballplayers say man. I love the music. I wish I could play. There seems to be a real crossover. That's how we first met Joe Montana and Dwight Gooden runny Lott and and And Ricky Ellison at at at the damage at the bare musical arts once and then And they said they. I think they were there to present an award or something we met and they said. Hey looks once you let us sing on one of your songs? We'll let you think he snaps a great soap so we got him just to get. Those four guys came in sang on on. If they're the guys in the back. Yeah it was funny. Actually because you know we use those four guys and And we tripled tracked him. We did it like three times and it sounded like one hundred people and On the next record sport we had a song called. I know what I like. We wanted that same idea we would. We'd have them shout and then we put little harmonies over the top of them so it sounded like a whole big gang of people thinking you know and so we tried a next week. We have something we want to try to that effect so we did that ourselves. We went out shout out. I like but it sounded so weedy compared to the forty niners finally we had to go up to Rockland and taped them singing either like in order to get. That sounds 'cause they're big. They got big voices. You know funny. Yeah well I I imagine you grew up listening to Russ Hodges and Lon Simmons and it just on me A lot of times I used to see you guys hang out with lawn or maybe Lon was hanging out with you At least Bill Gibson. The drummer was their connection with you guys and and and lawn. Oh yeah I I was. I was Russ Hodges as paper boy. In when he lived in Shannon Shannon No valley yeah and then and then But later on we got to know lawn through. I think we first met at a golf serve but when mccovey golf tournament probably and we got real close and Spend a lot of time with him towards the end. Yeah he was. Lying was great yet all the great stories. Oh Yeah One guy and smart and funny and just such a pleasure to hang out with really fun year Baseball Career Huey. I mean you moved your family from New York in Nineteen fifty five three years before the giants showed up. You grew up in Mill Valley Strawberry Point School. Ed McGuire Middle School before they built Detroit. Who Middle School and then you went to Prep School in New Jersey and you play ball there You pitched a bit. You played them short. What was that experience like? All of a sudden you know heading east because you're so young man now is great. You know I had two great coaches growing up one in Mill Valley Clarence Bush who was From insulted from Texas and he was just a great great coach in and taught us the game properly. And then I had another great coach. Lawrenceville called Jim Wa who's WHO's also our poetry teacher English in poetry teacher and it's still alive and We convenes we convene bunch of once a year sometimes to to kind of he gives each is an English class. He does he we did. The natural was one of his favorite books. You know Madame Medicine natural and he he would teach it and as I lay dying also heavy stuff but but but he was a great great coach and And a lot of fun to play with by for I'm only played Infield shortstop but But my senior year We didn't have much of a pitching staff and so i. I volunteered that pitch at work. My way up the number two guy. Wow that's amazing. Career might be too big a word for my baseball when baseball percents. We'll come on. You had a perfect score on the math. Sat and you're going to cornell in the engineering department and you're going to play ball there but thanks cut a detoured from there. Right true to you off bummed around Europe and discover the harmonica music of US Ross. Yeah didn't didn't play it. Didn't go out didn't go out for the team when I go just joined. Bands played music. Wendy the harmonica move ahead of the glove Right then yeah and then but then of course there wasn't over because I came back to. Marin county joined clover and then we had a softball team to play your team. Jose Magnolia we have supple game some some bitter bitter rivalry we had U N. Okay now. Now let's get person you'll know that yet they do now. Yeah that was mid seventies You back yes softball that was before tournaments and leagues. I'm talking mid seventies southern Lorenzo and. Yeah you're playing. The clover band was the green uniforms and Leroy. Jose Magnolia with purple uniforms. I was seventy you know I think we. I think we you guys won. Probably won more games than we did but we drink more beer than you had more fun. No I live for times. Man That was a blast Because the name of the team was clover and that was your band at the time before the guys from clover and the guys from sound holes kind of destroyed with Huey Lewis and the news and that was that was classic Mill Valley stuff. I mean fat factory guys from the original band Johnny. He'll get some shots John Hopper still with you now. I mean. That's awesome sustainability row. Shoot I mean billy and I went to Ed McGuire at the same time because he was a year younger given class. But Yeah we we could say. We grew up together. So that was that. In those days in the sixties and Seventies. I mean everybody was in a band. That was what we that's what you did and it was live music everywhere. It's hard it's hard to fathom now but in those days you know they didn't have near the recorded. Nobody's spun records deejays. It was all live music in clubs and there. Was you know in our early days? In the late seventy mid mid seventies all through the seventies. There was five. Different clubs would have live music in. Marin County. Yeah. It was unbelievable. In fact my three older brothers played a bunch of music and still do we live up near. The CIPOLLINI is on the mountain. There Mario Your Old Bass player and your shirt from quicksilver and Alex call came out and played a couple of guys from the band Played softball with everybody. That was that was good broil park and Maguire all these fields around the county. No Pires kind of Fast Pitch. But yeah you're right. It was hardcore man. You had good players. You guys were loaded really fun. We look forward to it. Yeah well you're in Montana. Is Marin still home? Is Mill Valley still home? The partially out you know. We have the studio engineer cells. So we we we. We make our records in our our offices there and our hersal space and all that so. I still. I still get there from time to time but I pretty much stay out here in Montana where you know more cheese less rat were. Your parents into sports are baseball. I mean they were artistically inclined. Your Dad was a drummer. Your mom was an artist who hung out with poets. Your Dad was a doctor by trade but loved a big band. Jazz and dixie scenes. Never let my dad played a little ball. He was a caffeinated played. Played a little ball. Yeah I mean he played with me you got. You gave me my start. You know we bleed. Catches was a young kid. Yeah so yeah. Thanks for joining us for part. One of this giant splash podcast with Lewis. In part two we will get deeper into hueys new album weather including a video for one of the songs that features a certain giants manager who three championships and we share a bunch of stories on Hueys Childhood Idol Willie mays and a lot of other cool stuff. Stay tuned for part to the giants. Splash is a production of the San Francisco. Chronicle podcast producers King Kaufman and Allen Johnson. The theme Song Batter Up was written and performed by Lauren. Gold and Ray. Klis support the splash and all of our great journalism by signing up for a chronicle membership at SAF chronicle dot com slash pod.