When Colin Hay takes a long distance flight, he unexpectedly finds himself feeling a bit soppy.
"I don't tend to sleep much on planes; I'd like to, but it never happens," Hay explained in his Aussie-Scots burr.
"So I'll read for a bit and then watch two or three movies and I'll weep - I weep! - when I'm watching movies on aeroplanes for some reason.
"If there's a really sappy romantic comedy or something, I find myself weeping at those. I don't know whether it's the altitude or what it is; it's a strange thing and I just can't bloody explain it."
He may need to carry plenty of tissues because he has a fair bit of air travel ahead of him.
His national tour reaches Canberra on April 26 and there's much more thereafter as he heads back to his second home, the US, for an eight-states May tour, then across to Europe during June and July.
He returns here with his band, The Immigrants, comprising some of the LA-based members who played in Nashville on his most recent, critically acclaimed album Fierce Mercy, and of course, his Peruvian-born wife Cecilia Noel, who will also be opening for him when he comes to Canberra.
Hay's life is busier than ever.
He recently spent four months in Australia performing in the Melbourne Theatre Company's Twelfth Night to rave reviews - despite being terrified by the experience - as well as playing the ubiquitous mega-hit Down Under for the closing ceremony of the Invictus Games.
He has toured through Canberra many times in the early days with the hugely successful Men At Work, then later as a soloist, and now with his new band.
He has a legion of fans here who enjoy the fact that he is always happy to slip his old stuff in with the new.
"I will be playing songs from the old band, songs from the first record, and songs from the 12 or 13 records I have done since then," he said, over the phone from his new home in Santa Monica.
"I like to think our gigs are a pretty joyous affair. I think it's a bit of a special band this one, so I love touring with them.
"They're all great players and it's interesting just playing my music with people who are from different parts of the world."
He said coming along to a Colin Hay and the Immigrants gig was like going to a party where there might be a few surprises but that's always part of the attraction and mystery.
"It's like if you know there's people at the party you know but there's also a few strangers who you haven't met before.
"Yet by the end of the night, you've enjoyed yourself and made some new friends," he said.
His solo tour shows have a wonderfully folksy and funny narrative component but whether he will have time to tell stories to his Canberra audience, whom he knows always enjoy a good yarn, remains to be seen.
"It depends on the night," he said.
"I tend to tell less stories when it's a band show.
"I have become known for tampering with the truth in my solo shows and Canberra audiences love a good story, so there's usually some of that.
"It's a bit different with the band along but generally speaking, there's always a bit of rubbish and banter between songs."
Now in his 65th year, the Scots-born co-writer of some of Australia's most iconic pop songs finds he gets itchy feet when he stays home too long in So-Cal.
The co-founder of the hugely successful Men at Work whose debut album Business As Usual went commercially ballistic worldwide in 1981, he first moved to LA in 1989 for a few months to make his second solo album after the Men broke up, yet never imagined he would end up back there.
"After I made the record I headed back to Melbourne and for a variety of reasons, I just didn't feel comfortable there; I was getting divorced, I was drinking too much, and my record deal was back in the US so there were things pointing away from Melbourne for me at the time," he said.
"So I came here [to California] and I found it was a very welcoming place for me; it was a good place for me to be at that particular time, and I stayed and have grown to like it more and more ever since."
New places, their audiences and their music continually stimulate him. In 2018, he toured Cuba for the first time, loved the way music permeated the culture, and now he can't wait to get back there.
"Havana was a very confounding place in many ways but fantastic at the same time," he said.
"I was introduced to Cuban music through my wife. She's been over there 10 or 15 times; she first travelled across there in the 90s with her band.
"For one reason or another, it took me quite a long time to get there; I just seemed to be somewhere else. But I can't wait to go back."
A world-class songwriter, lyricist, story-teller and muso, Hay's interesting journey is detailed in the feature length doco Waiting for My Life To Begin, which can be found on the familiar commercial download sites.
- Colin Hay and The Immigrants will be playing at The Canberra Theatre at 7.30pm on April 26.