EVER wondered what a rock star gets up to when they are no longer constantly on the road?
Grinspoon bassist Joe Hansen became a greenskeeper when the band announced in 2013 it would be going on hiatus after 18 years.
“It was kind of weird actually,” the Sydneysider said.
“Even when we had little breaks in the past, there was always something on the horizon… but this was just like ‘oh well, that’s over’.
“We sort of had in the back of our minds we’ll probably do something in the future but to be honest, we actually didn’t know and if one of us had said a year or so down the track ‘hey guys I’ve had enough, I’m done’, we probably would have all gone ‘okay that’s that then’ because I don’t think we would have replaced anyone.
“At first it’s like ‘this is cool, I’ve got all this time off’ but then you start to think what am I going to do long-term because I’ve been in a band for 20 years and you can’t just sit around the house all day.
“I started doing a bit of work behind the scenes at various festivals and I also lived across the road from a bowling club, so I became the assistant greenskeeper for a few years, which was a bit different.
“I’d get up at like 5.30 in the morning instead of going to bed at 5.30 in the morning and I loved that for a while.
“I’m not a morning person so I quit that after a while, but it was really fun and I learnt heaps of different things.”
Thankfully the hiatus did not last, with the band getting back together in 2017 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of its first full-length album Guide To Better Living with a sold-out tour around the country.
“It was awesome because we announced the tour and we didn’t quite know what to expect and the response was really good,” Hansen said.
“That was a really exciting tour and it was really easy as well because we were doing Guide To Better Living so we didn’t need to talk about writing a set.
“We played a few extra songs at the end but that was pretty obvious too, so it was a really seamless thing to get back into it.”
Two years later the legendary Aussie rockers are preparing to hit the circuit again with their Chemical Hearts national tour.
“To be honest, it was just a desire to want to tour and play again,” Hansen said.
“I don’t know if that’s a good enough excuse or not but that’s what we’re doing.”
Though the tour will be like a trip down memory lane with all the hits and festival favourites, Hansen said fans could also expect “a few curveballs in there too”.
“I think people that know our records will get a kick out of and it’ll be fun for us to play a few different things,” he said.
Fans have already shown their appreciation, with four of the 13 shows already sold out and three more added to the list.
“You just don’t know how things are going to be received so it’s pretty cool,” Hansen said.
“It’s always nice to slap that sold out banner across the poster so hopefully a few more sell out in the near future.”
The tour will also see the release of the Chemical Hearts vinyl record, only available at the shows, that will offer a taste of the shows’ set lists.
But that’s not the only new release, with Hansen confirming there is new material in the works – their first in seven years.
“There’s been a fair bit of talk and not heaps and heaps of action but the ideas are all there and the idea to do it is there so we’ve just got to actually do it,” Hansen said.
“We’re all spread out so we need a concerted effort to get together and actually get in the same room together but that’s on the cards.
“Hopefully we can get some good new material together so next time we tour we’ll have a whole bunch of new stuff which will be pretty cool,” Hansen said.
Grinspoon kicks off the Chemical Hearts tour at Metropolis Fremantle on October 11 and Metro City in Perth on October 12 before taking it around the country.
What: Chemical Hearts national tour
October 11: Metropolis Fremantle
October 12: Metro City, Perth
Support acts: The Hard Aches, Gooch Palms, Bugs