(CBS NEWS) – Years ago Huey Lewis and the News sang that it was “Hip To Be Square.” So what’s new with Huey Lewis these days? John Blackstone tracked him down for A Summer Song:
In Montana’s Bitterroot Valley, not only does a river run through it, when the fly fisherman is Huey Lewis, a rhythm runs through it.
“If I’m saltwater fishing or something, I’ll strip [a bug] to a certain song,” Lewis explained to Blackstone.
Listen closely enough and you might just hear the heartbeat of rock ‘n’ roll.
In 1983, Huey Lewis and the News hit the Top 10 with “Heart of Rock & Roll.” It was the first track on “Sports,” an album that sold more than 10 million copies.
The platinum records hang on the wall of Lewis’ rehearsal space near San Francisco. And on “Sports,” was not one hit or two, but at least four.
“Don’t embarrass me, John!” Lewis laughed.
Those hits include “If This Is It,” “Heart and Soul,” “I Want a New Drug,” and “Heart and Soul.”
Lewis is marking this 30th anniversary of “Sports” with a tour, and the release of a re-mastered CD.
While the music business has gone through many changes in 30 years, it’s meant Lewis’ fans have bought the same songs more than once — on vinyl, then tape, then CD, then download.
“Timing was very good to us,” Lewis quipped.
WEB EXTRA VIDEO: Huey Lewis talks about his love of music, and of dealing with success after years of struggle.
Not only has his music lived on since the 1980s, but so has much of his wardrobe. Lewis showed off the original “Heart of Rock & Roll” coat, “made famous through MTV,” he laughed. “I could probably get something on eBay for that!”
When Lewis had his first Top 10 hit, “Do You Believe in Love” in 1982, music videos were in their infancy.
“I thought it was the worst thing I’d ever seen, just cringe-worthy,” Lewis said of the song’s video. “It was so silly and stupid. And at the end, everybody stood up and applauded. So I thought to myself, ‘Well, anybody can do this! Let’s do the videos ourselves.'”
From then on, they produced their own music videos . . . apparently not taking themselves too seriously.
“We weren’t really concerned with our image that much,” Lewis admitted. “I mean, I don’t even have a tattoo, you know?”
And his hobbies — golf and fly fishing — don’t necessarily match the usual image of a rock star. “It’s okay, though, isn’t it?” he said, waist-deep in the stream. “I mean, where would you rather be?”