It’s hard not to swoon — especially if privileged enough to experience the ’80s firsthand. It’s like a kick ass jeopardy category: “Jessie’s Girl”… who is Rick Springfield? Dr. Noah Drake on General Hospital… Rick Springfield, “Don’t Talk to Strangers”…Rick Springfield, movie star, TV star, writer, rock star and all out ’80s icon… Rick Springfield. Unnervingly handsome, talented and oddly down to earth and funny, Springfield has outlasted his decade’s predecessors by evolving musically and accepting TV and movie roles that had just enough hint of irony to make him, if possible, even more attractive. Mocking himself on the cult hit “Californication,” definitely showed a wit that surpasses an ’80s ego and hair, and interviewing him was nothing short of delightful.
Coming to the Sunset Green Lawn on Sunday, Sept. 9, Rams Head productions presents Rick Springfield live and still rocking. Springfield’s music has expanded beyond the ’80s into a bluesy, rock and roll powerhouse but he still loves to play fan favorites like “Jessie’s Girl,” “Don’t Talk to Strangers,” “I’ve Done Everything for you,” and “Love Somebody” guaranteed to have the audience singing as well. For more information go to www.keywestconcertseries.com
Have you ever been to Key West?
Yes. A couple of times, I think. Once to play and once to look at retirement living. Ok just kidding.
What can your audience expect, what kind of performance?
Loud and proud. It’s a very audience interactive show but I can’t tell you the big secret thing that happens in the show, so you’ll just have to show up.
Your music became iconic ’80’s, how has it evolved now decades later? What music/bands/musicians influence your music now?
Everything influences music. Trends, news, personal stuff, friends, enemies, new music, old music. I think I write more about what’s happening with our world these days because it’s fairly dire, but thank God sex and romance are still in there, too.
Your lyrics and music is deeper, more bluesy mixed with rock and roll on album “The Snake King” … how did that evolve?
Looking at the news and the state of our planet, I was in blues bands as a kid and it’s always been my go to jam music, so it’s kind of natural though it may catch some fans by surprise.
Are people surprised at how multi-talented you are? You are not just a singer, an actor, but also a writer. What motivates all the creativity?
Fear, just kidding. I don’t know … it’s just stuff I enjoy doing. It’s all my hobbies.
What writers do you enjoy? What’s on your nightstand?
I’m reading three books at the moment “Pet Sematary,” “Factfulness” and “The Fatal Shore.” I love sci-fi mainly,but read everything. You can’t be a writer if you don’t read.
Your acting career has had many high notes — “General Hospital’s” Dr. Noah Drake, and you were hilarious in “Californication” and perfect with Meryl in “Ricki and the Flash.” You are a natural actor, can we expect another great role in the near future?
Yes I plan on it. Just waiting for the gods to say, “Okay, NOW!”
You have been brutally honest about depression. Did you realize how important it would be to talk about it publicly?
No, I didn’t realize the stigma attached to it for many people. I’ve always been pretty honest about my depression. It helps people to understand why I can be a jerk sometimes and a good guy at other moments. I thought everyone would be interested in the wild rock and roll sex in my autobiography but the stuff about my depression is what caught people’s attention. I’m glad that it serves some other purpose than prurient interest.
Letting the public get to know you better, how has that affected your creativity?
I’ve always been honest in my songs so that hasn’t stopped with prose writing. Oscar Hammerstein said, “Write what you know,” and I know myself pretty damn well.
What’s one of your favorite things you ever created, acted, wrote or sang that makes you proud or was a great memory?
Well, “Jessie’s Girl” came out of nowhere so that was kind of a magic moment. I was an unknown musician one day and then happened to write the right song I guess and the next day was different.
On a humorous note, do you think about all the girls who date “Jessies” and most likely at some point, got serenaded by your song? 🙂
I’ve met a LOT. A guy will come up and say, “Hi. My name is Jesse,” and I’ll be like, “Ok, sorry dude.”
Sunset Green Lawn
Sept. 9, 8 p.m.
Tickets available www.keywestconcertseries.com