Folk Singer Ted Hawkins Opens Up About Music Career in Rare 1994 Interview

In this episode of the Essential Conversations podcast, a rare 1994 interview recorded one year before his untimely death, folk singer Ted Hawkins spoke with Ann Delisi about his journey from busking on Venice Beach to landing a record deal.

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In this rare 1994 interview, Ann Delisi talks with folk singer Ted Hawkins just one year before his untimely death.

Ted Hawkins lived a difficult life. He grew up poor, was put into reform school at the age of 12 and found himself in and out of prison over the years.

But, Hawkins wasn’t ashamed of his past. He learned from those experiences and moved on. At the time of the interview, Hawkins was looking forward to the future.

He was on a big come up in his music career.

Hawkins was a busker on Venice Beach until he was approached by Tony Berg to record his first album, The Next Hundred Years, for Geffen Records.

They rescued me from the beach. It’s hell out there!”

After signing with Geffen, Hawkins began touring his new album across the United States.

Just as he was settling into his new lifestyle as a professional musician with a major record deal, Ted Hawkins died of a stroke at age 58.

In this episode:

  • Ted Hawkins on going from street performing to recording a studio album
  • Seeking the pinnacle of artistic success to feed the hungry
  • Appreciating life’s challenges and looking toward the future

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  • David Leins is a Podcast Coordinator and Producer at WDET. He also oversees the StoryMakers program. When he isn't making radio and podcasts, David is probably on a hike somewhere marveling at the trees.