Charles Hayward (musician)

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Charles Hayward
Charles Hayward in Limerick, Ireland on 17 May 2007.
Charles Hayward in Limerick, Ireland on 17 May 2007.
Background information
GenresExperimental rock
Occupation(s)Composer, musician
Years active1970–present

Charles Hayward (born 1951) is an English drummer and was a founding member of the experimental rock groups This Heat and Camberwell Now.[1] He also played with Mal Dean's Amazing Band, Dolphin Logic, and gigged and recorded with Phil Manzanera in the group Quiet Sun project as well as a short stint with Gong.[2] He was a session musician on The Raincoats' second album, Odyshape,[3] and on one occasion played drums for the anarchist punk band Crass.[4] Since the late 1980s, Hayward has released several solo projects and participated in various collaborations, most notably Massacre with Bill Laswell and Fred Frith.[1]


In 1976, Hayward and fellow musician Charles Bullen began practising with bassist Gareth Williams under the name This Heat. They began to experiment with tape loops, found sounds and keyboards on several sessions (recorded from 1976 to 1978, but not released until 1979). Finally, in 1979, This Heat released their self-titled debut album. 1981's Deceit marked the final new album from This Heat, Williams leaving just after its release. While Bullen began working as a studio engineer, Hayward did sessions for Lora Logic, The Raincoats and Everything but the Girl before forming Camberwell Now with bassist Trefor Goronwy and tape manipulator Stephen Rickard.[1] The trio released 2 eps Meridian, Greenfingers and 1 album The Ghost Trade through the Swiss Recommended label.[2]

When Camberwell Now disbanded in 1987 Hayward embarked on a solo career which has continued to the present day. He debuted with Survive the Gesture (1987), Skew-whiff (1989) Switch on War (1991) and My Secret Alphabet (with Nick Doyne-Ditmas) in 1993. Three live albums recorded in Japan followed in the late 1990s (released on Japanese label Locus Solus). In 2003 Abracadabra Information was released and 2011 saw the release of ONE BIG ATOM. In 1998, he joined Massacre with Fred Frith and Bill Laswell.[2]

Throughout the 1990s up to the present he has initiated a large number of events and performances, including the series Accidents + Emergencies at the Albany Theatre in Deptford;[5] Out of Body Orchestra; music made using sounds from the construction of the new Laban Dance Centre (now the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance), which was choreographed for the institution's official opening; music for a circus (part of the National Theatre's 'Art of Regeneration' initiative); and the full-on installation/performance Anti-Clockwise (with Ashleigh Marsh and David Aylward) for multiple strobes, maze structure of diverse textures, 2 drummers, synthesizers and your nervous system. Recent developments include the CONTINUITY evenings as part of Camberwell Arts. Over the past ten years Hayward has developed these attitudes and insights into a wide range of soundwork, both collaboratively and as a solo artist/performer. These include: 30 MINUTE SNARE DRUM ROLL,[6][7] Zigzag+Swirl, a solo song set at the drums using a system of controlled chance electronics, beginanywhere a set of songs centred around the piano,[8] collaborations with Laura Cannell,[9] Thurston Moore, Keiji Haino amongst many others. Recent work with the Islington Mill crew in the project Anonymous Bash has led to new work with many younger players, including Harmergeddon, DATA QUACK (with Ben Vince, Merlin Nova and Coby Sey) and projects for an array of new record labels including Samarbeta, Care in the Community and Unknown Gods. He also releases material on his own label CONTINUITY..... His long term relationship with the Albany continues with a twice yearly series of performances, workshops and installation, sound is sound is sound which he curates on behalf of Lewisham Arthouse.

In 2019 Whistling Arrow - a sextet comprising three members of Ex-Easter Island Head, Laura Cannell, André Bosman and Charles Hayward published an album out on 22 November via God Unknown records.[10]

As well as his solo performance, Hayward's recent projects include:

Personal life[edit]

Hayward currently lives with his wife and three children, Lewis (b. 1987), Merlin (b. 1992) and Riley (b. 1996).



  • Survive the Gesture (1987) Sub Rosa
  • Skew Whiff – A Tribute to Mark Rothko (1990) Sub Rosa
  • Switch on War (1991) Sub Rosa
  • Escape From Europe – Live in Japan vol 1 (1996) Locus Solus
  • Double Agent(s) – Live in Japan vol 2 (1999) Locus Solus
  • Near + Far – Live in Japan vol 3 (1999) Locus Solus
  • Abracadabra Information (2004) Locus Solus
  • Live At Tone Deaf 10-27-11 (2012) Otoacoustic, 12xFile, MP3, Album, 320
  • One Big Atom (2011) Continuity... Records
  • Trademark Ground (2012) Otoacoustic, limited edition single sided LP, 300 copies[16]
  • Anonymous Bash (2014) Samarbeta Residency, LP + DVD
  • Begin Anywhere (2019) God Unknown, LP[8]

12" singles[edit]

  • Charles Hayward: Wash Rinse Spin c/w Michael Prime: Osculation (2000) These Records
  • Smell Of Metal (2014) ΚΕΜΑΛ 2 x 12"

7" singles[edit]

  • Charles Hayward: Out Of Order c/w Beside (2000) Dot Dot Dot Music limited edition


  • Charles Hayward, Peter Bromley: Charles Hayward Recorded (2007) 1968 Film Group DVD-V PAL

Albums as collaborator[edit]

see also Quiet Sun, This Heat, Camberwell Now, etc...

Compilation albums as collaborator[edit]

  • Charles Hayward, Nick Doyne-Ditmas: "Where Is Chaos Now" 20m 56s, track on compilation Chaos In Expansion (1993) Sub Rosa
  • David Shea, Charles Hayward, Nûs: "the new world order, who decides ?" 8m 27s, "accidents & emergencies" 7m 12s, "no bones" 5m 02s, 3 tracks on compilation Sub Rosa Sessions Bari, October 1996 (1997) Sub Rosa

Compilation EPs as collaborator[edit]

  • Raf And O: Time Machine EP track "Time Machine" + 3 remixes include "Time Machine" (Merlin & Charles Hayward new yEAR Mix) (2014)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Spicer, Daniel (June 2019). "Song & Chance Man [interview with Charles Hayward]". The Wire. No. 424.
  2. ^ a b c Kitching, Sean (19 June 2018). "The Strange World Of... Charles Hayward". The Quietus. Retrieved 12 August 2019.
  3. ^ Women of the underground : music : cultural innovators speak for themselves. Burden, Zora von, 1968-. San Francisco: Manic D Press. 2010. ISBN 9781933149509. OCLC 701110652.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  4. ^ Steve Ignorant interviewed by Punk 77 website, 2007
  5. ^ "Obituary: Gareth Williams". The Guardian. London. 7 February 2002. Retrieved 8 January 2010.
  6. ^ Clark, Philip (24 March 2017). "Modern Ritual at Café Oto". Financial Times. London.
  7. ^ Tomson, Spenser (May 2018). "Modern Ritual live review". The Wire. No. 411.
  8. ^ a b Chambers, Jamie (24 June 2019). "Reviews | Charles Hayward – Begin Anywhere". The Quietus. Retrieved 12 August 2019.
  9. ^ a b Riley, Danny (20 January 2015). "Fragments Of Fragments: An Interview With Laura Cannell". The Quietus. Retrieved 13 August 2019.
  10. ^ Cory, Lara C (21 November 2019). "The Quietus | Features | The Lead Review | Ritual Union: Whistling Arrow Feat. Laura Cannell & Charles Hayward". The Quietus. Retrieved 25 November 2019.
  11. ^ Gill, Andy (7 March 2008). "Album: Clear Frame, Clear Frame (Continuity)". The Independent. London. Retrieved 26 December 2019.
  12. ^ "Mathilde 253 biography". Retrieved 26 December 2019.
  13. ^ Kelly, Seán (2010). "Mathilde 253 – Han-earl Park". Retrieved 26 December 2019.
  14. ^ "Monkey Puzzle Trio + Snorkel + Red Square". Time Out. Archived from the original on 16 October 2012. Retrieved 20 July 2010.
  15. ^ "Monkey Puzzle Trio | Listen and Stream Free Music, Albums, New Releases, Photos, Videos". Myspace.
  16. ^ "Moment's Notice: Reviews of Recent Recordings". Point of Departure. June 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  17. ^ "Nick Doyne-Ditmas interview for the Charles Hayward Recorded film (video clip 9m 28s)". Archived from the original on 21 September 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  18. ^ Astarita, Glenn (9 September 2007). "Hugh Hopper: Numero D'Vol (2007)". All About Jazz. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  19. ^ "Music interview: Hot Chip". 2010. Archived from the original on 23 August 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2016.
  20. ^ a b Gardner, Noel (15 July 2020). "The Quietus | Features | New Weird Britain In Review For July By Noel Gardner". The Quietus. Retrieved 1 August 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)

External links[edit]