Huey Lewis Was Jogging When He Wrote Famous Lyrics

Hearing-impaired singer reflects on 'Power of Love' as he releases what may be his last album
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 17, 2020 9:50 AM CST
Updated Feb 22, 2020 1:30 PM CST

(Newser) – Huey Lewis and the News just released a new album, Weather, but Lewis himself won't be able to listen to it. And longtime fans might have to reconcile with this being the group's last-ever release—thanks to the disease that has robbed the 69-year-old Lewis of his hearing. Coverage:

  • The ailment: Lewis has Meniere's disease, an inner-ear disorder related to dizziness and hearing loss, explains NPR. "I can't hear the notes—I just hear cacophony," Lewis says. He received the diagnosis in 2018 and previously said he was "suicidal" at first.
  • Earlier problem: What casual Lewis fans might not realize is that the singer lost most of the hearing in his right ear in the mid-'80s, but he was able to carry on. “You only need one ear,” he recalls a specialist telling him at the time, per Esquire. “Brian Wilson had one ear.”
  • That song: The mid-'80s, of course, is when Lewis and his band rose to international stardom thanks in particular to the Power of Love, theme for the Back to the Future movie. Lewis and co-writers (and fellow band members) Chris Hayes and Johnny Colla tell the Wall Street Journal how it came to be. Guitarist Hayes gave Lewis the chord progression he'd written for a new song, and Lewis then came up with the main lyrics while out jogging. "I was thinking of my family," says Lewis. "I had married a year earlier and we had our first child, Kelly, in '84. Austin was on the way. I was no longer a bachelor. The power of love keeps you home at night."

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