50 Bold & Legendary John Oates Quotes

Last Updated:

Which are your favorite John Oates quotes?

John Oates is an American rock, R&B, and soul guitarist, singer-songwriter, and record producer. He is best known as half of the popular pop-rock duo, ‘Hall & Oates’, with fellow well-known musician ‘Daryl Hall’ as the principal lead vocalist.

Despite Oates’ main role in the duo as a guitarist, he also co-wrote many of their top 10 record hits, including ‘Sara Smile’, ‘She’s Gone’, and ‘Out of Touch’.

Along with the duo, Oates has successfully sold more than 40 million records worldwide with 10 hits charted number one in the international music chart, most of which Oates notably co-wrote.

For his amazing works in the music industry, Oates was inducted into the ‘Songwriters Hall of Fame’ and also into the ‘Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’.

We’ve put together this collection of the best John Oates quotes:


50 Bold & Legendary John Oates Quotes

1. “You don’t want to pitch a tent and live inside the Louvre. You want to check it out, appreciate it, and move somewhere else.” – John Oates

2. “If I had to drop everything and just be a songwriter, I would be OK with that because that’s the real joy.” – John Oates

3. “When the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame decided to open up the voting beyond their inner circle, to the actual fans, that’s when I think everything changed.” – John Oates

4. “I don’t listen to music. I very rarely listen to music. I only listen for information. I listen when a friend sends me a song or a new record.” – John Oates

5. “If something that needs to be done that we don’t feel confronting, we do it through the manager.” – John Oates

6. “I love what Alabama Shakes is doing – it’s kind of like what grunge did to rock ‘n’ roll, they’re doing to R&B.” – John Oates

7. “Swimming upstream in the music business is a hard thing to do.” – John Oates

8. “My songwriting has evolved, just as I’ve evolved as a person.” – John Oates

9. “With his passing, Dick Clark deserves to take his place at the top in the pantheon of popular culture icons.” – John Oates


10th of 50 John Oates Quotes

10. “The key, I think, from a business point of view, is to learn how to be efficient in making a record that’s not too expensive, so that you’re not going crazy spending tons of money-making a product that might not ever return that money.” – John Oates


11. “We collaborate together. We work with other people. We work by ourselves.” – John Oates

12. “I don’t care if it’s a Cole Porter song, or George Gershwin, or Lennon/McCartney, or Elton John, or you know, whoever, Bob Dylan. Great songs are great songs, and they stand the test of time, and they can be interpreted and recorded with many points of view, but yet still retain the essence of what makes them good songs.” – John Oates

13. “We’ve been together since we’ve been teenagers. I can go away and disappear for two years, and when we get back together, it’s like nothing ever has changed.” – John Oates

14. “With Hall & Oates, honestly, after years and years of playing the same material, it’s easy to coast. I can coast through a show.” – John Oates

15. “You may be embarrassed about the way you looked and the wacky clothes you wore when you were young, but normally, at least it’s hidden in a box in the attic.” – John Oates

16. “I think people were just starving for good material because they just weren’t getting it on the radio.” – John Oates

17. “If you look over the years, the styles have changed – the clothes, the hair, the production, the approach to the songs. The icing to the cake has changed flavors. But if you really look at the cake itself, it’s really the same.” – John Oates

18. “In the days when regional music was very clearly defined and had a clear personality – Memphis, Detroit, Chicago, whatever – Philadelphia had a tradition that was very distinct and unique.” – John Oates

19. “If I stopped touring tomorrow, it wouldn’t change my life.” – John Oates


20th of 50 John Oates Quotes

20. “I think in music and a lot of creative fields, people’s egos get in the way of their ability of seeing the big picture.” – John Oates


21. “I think social media is so important; the young bands have certainly embraced that and used that to their advantage.” – John Oates

22. “I have a great family, I live an amazing life.” – John Oates

23. “My guitar playing is a synthesis of traditional American acoustic style and Urban Pop and R&B.” – John Oates

24. “I realized if I’m not really making an album, I don’t have to be concerned about things like stylistic consistency, pacing, a coherent mood. All that stuff goes out the window.” – John Oates

25. “I couldn’t begin to name names… in general I have found racers to be some of the most competitive people on the planet… and some of the nicest as well.” – John Oates

26. “Well, because we’re so different as people. And it’s that difference that probably also makes it easy to stay together, because we don’t get in each other way.” – John Oates

27. “I have such a wide variety of tastes in things that I like musically.” – John Oates

28. “It’s the music that brings us together.” – John Oates

29. “I couldn’t wait to grow a mustache. I stopped shaving my upper lip the day I graduated from high school.” – John Oates


30th of 50 John Oates Quotes

30. “I’ve been asked to do various types of cruises.” – John Oates


31. “I didn’t make a solo album until the year 2000.” – John Oates

32. “I may just keep releasing singles ’til I run out of music, which is kind of cool in a way – as long as people don’t go, Oh my God, not another one!.” – John Oates

33. “Maneater’ is about N.Y.C. in the ’80s. It’s about greed, avarice, and spoiled riches.” – John Oates

34. “I like playing on stage, don’t get me wrong.” – John Oates

35. “I just like playing with the band and doing what I do.” – John Oates

36. “Back in the early ’90s, I started going to Nashville to do a lot of co-writes. One of the first people I met there was Keith Follese. Keith and his wife Adrienne are both songwriters, and we wrote some songs together.” – John Oates

37. “You have to know when to strike and when to retreat.” – John Oates

38. “If anyone looks back to the ’70s, ’80s with nostalgic rosy-colored glasses and goes, ‘Well, everything was awesome.’ No, everything was not awesome!” – John Oates

39. “Sometimes, it’s just great to bring new people into the mix.” – John Oates


40th of 50 John Oates Quotes

40. “The bricks and mortar of the music business, they don’t exist any longer.” – John Oates


41. “There’s all sorts of soul. There’s Irish soul and Native American soul. If it touches you and moves you, it’s soul.” – John Oates

42. “A good mustache makes a man for many reasons.” – John Oates

43. “To me, when a great band is playing together, it’s amazing for me.” – John Oates

44. “I never finish a show without singing She’s Gone.” – John Oates

45. “I get to play with all these different players who don’t necessarily approach music always the same way that I might. So I learn a lot.” – John Oates

46. “I think it’s kind of difficult to write a good Christmas song because you have a narrow framework of references that you have to work within, and at the same time you want to do something that’s personally original and hopefully somewhat unique.” – John Oates

47. “When my song came on the radio for the first time, that was one of the heaviest things I remember.” – John Oates

48. “Personally, I’ve never really wanted to be a rock star. That wasn’t my motivation in life. It kind of happened.” – John Oates

49. “I do a lot of things behind the scenes. I do a lot of things that don’t hit the headlines.” – John Oates

50. “I’m an indie artist with major distribution, so one foot in the extreme major music business and one foot in the abyss of indie artists.” – John Oates



Thanks for checking out this collection of quotes from John Oates! Don’t forget to share them on social media with your friends and family.

Which are your favorite John Oates quotes? Leave a comment below.

Zisilia Alvsa
Zisilia Alvsa
Zisilia Alvsa is a writer for Wealthy Gorilla. Friends often call her Zii. She is a girl from Jakarta, Indonesia who currently lives in Bali. Zii loves photography and travelling.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Matthew Fox Net Worth

What is Matthew Fox's net worth?  Introduction    Matthew Fox is...

Rickie Fowler Net Worth

What is Rickie Fowler's net worth?   Introduction  As of ,...

Michael Jordan Net Worth

What is Michael Jordan's net worth? Introduction As of ,...

Austin McBroom Net Worth

What is Austin McBroom's net worth?  Introduction  Austin McBroom is a...

Willard Scott Net Worth

What is Willard Scott's net worth?  Introduction      Willard Scott...

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Net Worth

What is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's net worth? Introduction  Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is an...

Latest Net Worth Profiles

John Landis Net Worth

John Landis made millions as a director and actor in Hollywood, eventually becoming one of the wealthiest icons in the film world.

Ralf Schumacher Net Worth

German racing driver Ralf Schumacher has earned millions as a Grand Prix champion in Formula One.

Petra Kvitova Net Worth

Czech professional tennis player Petra Kvitova has earned a substantial net worth as one of the world's greatest players to ever compete on the court.

Peter Jackson Net Worth

Best known for directing Lord of the Rings, Peter Jackson is one of the wealthiest and most well-known filmmakers in Hollywood.

Peter Forsberg Net Worth

Former professional hockey player Peter Forsberg earned millions in the NHL as one of the greatest players of all time.

Pete Sampras Net Worth

As a longtime rival of Andre Agassi, Pete Sampras has earned a substantial net worth as one of the world's best former tennis players.

Steve Nash Net Worth

Steve Nash is a former National Basketball Association player, and current coach, who is considered one of the greatest point guards of all time.

Pete Dye Net Worth

Golf course designer Pete Dye was renowned for his architectural skills, and he earned millions by creating some of the best golf courses in the world.

Stefan Edberg Net Worth

Former professional tennis player Stefan Edberg has earned a remarkable fortune as a six-time Grand Slam champion.

Paul Thomas Anderson Net...

American filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson has earned a substantial net worth for directing hits like Boogie Nights and Magnolia.