Some musicians just play music. They're not interested in awards, gracing magazine covers or any of the media hoopla that can endanger their artistic endeavors. Although Neil Finn has had a wildly successful career - Split Enz, Crowded House and Finn Brothers (not to mention his solo career) - he has always managed to keep a low profile and go about his business of writing songs.
Writer Bill DeYoung has said that "Neil Finn's gift is for wiretapping the dark and often forbidden recesses of the human psyche, and turning their disconnected musings into beautiful - and damn catchy - pop tunes."
It's hard to fathom that Mr. Finn has been making music for as long as he has - he entered the musical landscape when he joined his older brother Tim's band, Split Enz, in 1977. For me, whenever I think about Neil Finn I'm reminded of the summer of '86 when MTV was playing "Don't Dream It's Over" and "Something So Strong" in heavy rotation.
In case you’re unfamiliar with Neil's career, here are ten things you need to know about the master craftsman:
9. When he was twelve years old, Neil decided to become a musician. He performed at family outings, prisons and hospitals.
7. The name Crowded House was inspired by the band's rental home in Los Angeles during the recording of their debut album in 1984.
6. When Crowded House broke-up in 1996, Neil Finn released two solo records, Try Whistling This (1998) and One Nil (2001). Finn and bassist Nick Seymour reformed Crowded House in 2006; unfortunately, without drummer Paul Hester who hanged himself the previous year.
4. Neil has contributed music to various film and television soundtracks: Boston Legal, Boston Public, Ant, Sports Night & Rain.
2. Neil sang backing vocals on Sheryl Crow's "Everyday is a Winding Road."