With the presidential primary battles settled and the national conventions weeks away, it’s a good time to gear up the Draft Daryl Hall campaign.
You might remember that alt-hip-hoppers Gym Class Heroes dubbed their 2007 tour “Daryl Hall for President,” and some of us punters have not forgotten the enticing promise of a third-party Hall candidacy.
At a time when most American politicians shy away from issues of class consciousness, we should note that Hall fearlessly took on idle, tax-loophole aristocrats in “Rich Girl,” with this eloquent turn of phrase: “You can rely on the old man’s money/it’s a bitch girl and it’s gone too far/’cause you know it don’t matter anyway.”
And rather than hearing our chief executive blandly announce that he’ll veto a telecom-immunity bill, wouldn’t it be nice to have Hall tell Congress: “I can’t go for that, no can do”?
In truth, Hall’s kiss has been on our list for some time now, and you can sense the grassroots momentum building in union halls and karaoke bars across the United States.
Gym Class Heroes are working on a Hall & Oates mashup album and invited Hall to sing on their forthcoming disc, The Quilt. Flight of the Conchords regularly drop his name and included him on a first-season episode of their HBO show. And the taller, non-pimp-looking half of the most popular duo in pop history wowed an opening-night crowd at SXSW in March.
It adds up to sweet vindication for Hall, a hit machine who always wanted more for himself. He played the hit-machine role because it came so easily to him, but he chafed at the suggestion that he was nothing more than a purveyor of antiseptic jingles.
These days, Hall is coming on like a Bolveshevik revolutionary at an auto-makers convention: wishing for the death of the music business, doing collabos with various youngbloods, and going all DIY with his new Web-only music show, Live From Daryl’s House.
Shot at his various vintage homes, this loose, unplugged series reminds you that Hall is bathing in Benjamins and that he possesses the most wondrous pipes ever to be found on a scrawny white boy from Philly. On the most recent episode, he duetted with Scottish chanteuse KT Tunstall, and I couldn’t help thinking about the fact that Tunstall’s “Suddenly I See” basically served as an unofficial theme song for Hillary Clinton’s campaign this year.
So Hall is making his political move and, fortunately, he’s not carrying around the heavy baggage of that soggy old Oates. If he starts to miss having a Sawed-Off Stache hanging around, he might want to balance his ticket with libertarian wacko Bob Barr, who can probably manage the Andrew Ridgeley-like demands of John Oates’ old job.
Barring some strange electoral snafu, we shouldn’t see Hall & Oates working together anytime soon - unless Monty Hall decides to start a game show with Joyce Carol Oates.