John Oates is ‘trying to lead my best life’ with Masked Singer performance after Hall & Oates bandmate Daryl Hall accused him of trying to sell half their music


John Oates is just focused on having a good time after shocking viewers and judges when he was revealed to be the anteater on Wednesday’s episode of The Masked Singer.

The 75-year-old singer–songwriter was eliminated in season 10’s Group C finals, but he admitted that he was also ‘a little relieved’ to be done with wearing the toasty suit while chatting with People on Thursday.

His appearance on the playful competition series comes amid ongoing legal wrangling with his former Hall & Oates partner Daryl Hall.

Hall, 77, has gotten a restraining order against Oates and sued him over accusations that he had tried to sell off half of their musical joint venture while allegedly timing the revelation to ‘ambush’ him as he set out on tour.

Oates, who said in a declaration in court that he was ‘deeply hurt’ by Hall’s claims, said he’s focused on moving forward and told the publication: ‘I am just trying to lead my best life.’

John Oates, 75, told People on Thursday that he's 'trying to lead my best life' after appearing on The Masked Singer (pictured Wednesday) and getting sued by Daryl Hall

John Oates, 75, told People on Thursday that he’s ‘trying to lead my best life’ after appearing on The Masked Singer (pictured Wednesday) and getting sued by Daryl Hall

Hall, 77, has gotten a restraining order against Oates and sued him over accusations that he had tried to sell off half of their musical joint venture while allegedly timing the revelation to 'ambush' him as he set out on tour; seen in 2008

Hall, 77, has gotten a restraining order against Oates and sued him over accusations that he had tried to sell off half of their musical joint venture while allegedly timing the revelation to ‘ambush’ him as he set out on tour; seen in 2008

‘I want to do good things. I want to give back; it’s important to me,’ he continued. ‘I want to enjoy whatever’s left in my creative future.’

On his latest Masked Singer appearance, Oates said he was ‘really exhausted’ after wrapping up his performance, which included choreography in addition to singing and came after an early performance.

‘I had done the Newport Folk Festival in Newport, Rhode Island, and jumped on a red-eye and got to LA in the middle of the night,’ he explained. ‘I had to get up super early in the morning and go straight to the soundstage and do The Masked Singer, so by the end of the night, I was really tired.’

When asked why he wanted to appear on the show, he joked: ‘Because I wanted to wear a giant, uncomfortable, hot, anteater suit and show off my fabulous vocal styles for the world.’

He said he was ‘hesitant’ when asked about doing the show, but he warmed up to the idea when The Goldbergs’ Hayley Orrantia asked him to be one of her clues when she appeared on the show, as they had developed a friendship when he made a guest appearance on her series.

‘I thought, “It’ll be kind of interesting to have no one know who I am, and have no preconceived notion about me as a ’80s pop guy, or part of Hall & Oates,”‘ he shared. ‘That was what really intrigued me about it.’

He added that he thought most fans associated him with his ’80s-era hits from Hall & Oates, even though he had made drastically different styles of music since then.

'I want to do good things. I want to give back; it's important to me,' Oates continued. 'I want to enjoy whatever's left in my creative future'; seen with Hall in 1983

‘I want to do good things. I want to give back; it’s important to me,’ Oates continued. ‘I want to enjoy whatever’s left in my creative future’; seen with Hall in 1983

He said he was 'relieved' to be done with The Masked Singer and admitted it left him 'exhausted' because he had to dance in the heavy suit and couldn't see anything

He said he was ‘relieved’ to be done with The Masked Singer and admitted it left him ‘exhausted’ because he had to dance in the heavy suit and couldn’t see anything

‘They’ll live forever, and so you can’t help that association,’ he said of his most popular tunes. ‘But I’ve done seven solo albums. I’ve been working as a solo artist for almost 20 years. I have a whole life in Nashville with roots music and Americana music that I really love.’

He added that living away from Hollywood in Nashville — and Colorado for 20 years before that — was one of the secrets to his longevity in the entertainment industry.

As for playing the anteater on The Masked Singer, Oates said it was ‘fun at first’ but got ‘harder and harder’ as the performance went on, as the suit had heavy, ‘gigantic boots’ that weighed him down and were strapped onto his feet.

Making matters worse was that he had to do some choreography, but he ‘couldn’t see’ in the costume. 

‘I had to count my steps where I was walking so I didn’t walk off the stage,’ he revealed.

While speaking about his current musical endeavors, he seemed to distance himself from his Hall & Oates period by saying he had tried to ‘stripped it down to do An Evening of Songs and Stories,’ his current show, which he does without major lighting and stage effects in front of more intimate audiences.

Late last month, Oates said he was ‘deeply hurt’ by the latest claims made by his Hall & Oates bandmate Daryl Hall that he secretly tried to sell his half of their music and even timed it to ‘ambush’ him on tour.

Oates filed a declaration in a Tennessee court to reveal his disappointment that a private dispute that he had with his 77-year-old bandmate has gone public.

Last month, Oates said he was 'deeply hurt' by claims made by his Hall & Oates bandmate Daryl Hall that he secretly tried to sell his half of their music and even timed it to 'ambush' him on tour as he filed a declaration in a Tennessee court obtained by TMZ; they are seen in 1981

Last month, Oates said he was ‘deeply hurt’ by claims made by his Hall & Oates bandmate Daryl Hall that he secretly tried to sell his half of their music and even timed it to ‘ambush’ him on tour as he filed a declaration in a Tennessee court obtained by TMZ; they are seen in 1981

Oates (pictured in December 2012) declared: 'I am tremendously disappointed that Daryl Hall decided to file his declaration from our private arbitration in this proceeding and make inflammatory, outlandish, and inaccurate statements against me'

Oates (pictured in December 2012) declared: ‘I am tremendously disappointed that Daryl Hall decided to file his declaration from our private arbitration in this proceeding and make inflammatory, outlandish, and inaccurate statements against me’

TMZ obtained the legal documents which they published in late November as Oates declared: ‘I am tremendously disappointed that Daryl Hall decided to file his declaration from our private arbitration in this proceeding and make inflammatory, outlandish, and inaccurate statements against me.’

The guitarist admitted in the documents that he and Hall have ‘not seen eye to eye’ but has tried his best to improve and protect their business and partnership.

He also claimed that Hall has been tough to deal with and said: ‘Daryl has consistently and publicly been adamant about being perceived as an individual rather than as part of a duo or group.’

This comes just a day after news that Hall is suing Oates  over claims that the guitarist and songwriter tried to sell off half of their musical joint venture.

Previously released court documents indicate that Hall believes Oates timed his attempt to sell so that it would ruin his latest tour.

According to documents obtained by TMZ, the hitmaker says he was ‘blindsided’ by news that Oates was trying to cash out.

He says he only learned of his former partner’s intent two days before setting out on tour, and he think the timing was intended to distract him and possibly harm his performances.

It was previously reported that not only was Hall blindsided by the attempted sale, but he distrusts the particular firm that is attempting to purchase Oates’ stake in their company Whole Oates Enterprises (WOE).

This comes just a day after news that Hall is suing Oates over claims that the guitarist and songwriter tried to sell off half of their musical joint venture; seen together in 2008

This comes just a day after news that Hall is suing Oates over claims that the guitarist and songwriter tried to sell off half of their musical joint venture; seen together in 2008

Hall writes in court documents obtained by TMZ that Oates (pictured) informed him of the intended sale just two days before his tour was scheduled to begin; Oates seen in 2019

Hall writes in court documents obtained by TMZ that Oates (pictured) informed him of the intended sale just two days before his tour was scheduled to begin; Oates seen in 2019

The company was named after their 1972 debut album, which is also a pun on their last names.

According to Hall’s filing, he and Oates had agreed to begin the process of dividing up their assets last year.

However, Oates’ plan to sell off his half to the music publishing company Primary Wave without his knowledge seems to have thrown a wrench into the matter. 

Hall writes that Oates knew both men needed to approve the deal for it to go through, but he has no plans to sign off.

‘I have no intention of becoming partners with Primary Wave, and [Oates] cannot be permitted to thrust a new partner upon me in this outrageous fashion,’ he wrote.

The Maneater singer added that he thinks Oates timed the news to just a couple days before his tour began to ‘ambush’ him.

He alleges that the distressing news might have distracted him or led to disappointing performances. 

Hall went on to claim that Oates tried ‘intentionally to cause me the maximum amount of harm.’

He believes that the timing was meant to 'ambush' him, and said Oates tried 'intentionally to cause me the maximum amount of harm'; seen together in 2014

He believes that the timing was meant to ‘ambush’ him, and said Oates tried ‘intentionally to cause me the maximum amount of harm’; seen together in 2014

The documents also indicate that Hall is dead set against Primary Wave taking ownership of their joint venture because he believes it exploits artists after taking control of their copyrights and trademarks; seen in 2017

The documents also indicate that Hall is dead set against Primary Wave taking ownership of their joint venture because he believes it exploits artists after taking control of their copyrights and trademarks; seen in 2017

The documents also outline why Hall is so dead set against letting Primary Wave own any part of their output.

He claims that the publishing company — which in recent years has focused on buying up the catalogues of famous artists — has developed a reputation for exploiting those same musicians’ copyrights and trademarks after taking control of their music. 

People previously reported that Hall claimed Oates would have caused ‘imminent irreparable harm’ to their business interests if he sold off his share of their joint venture.

In court docs reviewed by the publication, Hall detailed what he felt to be a series of ill-advised business moves from Oates, which led a judge to temporarily block the sale while legal proceedings and a previously initiated arbitration process continued.

Hall in court docs said that Oates was seeking to make moves that would break the terms of their agreement.

Hall said he and Oates — known professionally as Hall & Oates, with hits such as Private Eyes, I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do) and Maneater — came to an accord in October 2021 for their company Whole Oats Enterprises LLP.

On November 9, Hall said in court docs that Oates had been seeking to initiate an ‘unauthorized and void’ sale of his share to a company called Primary Wave Music.

Hall called for an arbitration process to commence in regards to Oates’ efforts to sell his share, telling the court that the transaction could have been completed by November 20, causing him ‘imminent irreparable harm’ in his business and professional interests. 

The latest: Hall was previously reported to have said in the documents that Oates would have caused 'imminent irreparable harm' to their business interests if he sold off his share of a joint venture the veteran music group had come to, according to People; pictured in 2022

The latest: Hall was previously reported to have said in the documents that Oates would have caused ‘imminent irreparable harm’ to their business interests if he sold off his share of a joint venture the veteran music group had come to, according to People; pictured in 2022

Hall in court docs said that Oates was seeking to make moves that would break the terms of their agreement. Oates was pictured in Nashville this past September

Hall in court docs said that Oates was seeking to make moves that would break the terms of their agreement. Oates was pictured in Nashville this past September 

An arbitrator had not been selected in response to a November 16 motion that Hall filed in the case, the outlet reported, stalling Hall’s request for temporary injunctive relief.

Hall told the court that he requested the restraining order, which was subsequently approved, ‘so as to maintain the status quo of [their company] before there is a change in control of the partnership in violation of the terms of the Agreement.’

The company Primary Wave has had a had a business stake in the musical tandem for a timeframe eclipsing 15 years, the AP reported.

Hall’s legal team said that the ‘private dispute’ over the business should be sealed by the court, adding, ‘This is not a matter of legitimate public interest, although the parties are well known.’

Hall’s lawyers said that the interpretation of their 2021 deal is at the crux of the suit, and the deal’s terms are confidential.

The legal docs reviewed by People indicate that arbitration will be addressed in a November 30 hearing.

Hall named the co-trustees of the John W. Oates TISA Trust, Aimee Oates and Richard Flynn, in the legal filing, according to the outlet, with summonses going out November 20.

It was not immediately clear if the dispute centered on the music catalog of Hall & Oates, the soft-rock-and-pop duo who also boast hits such as You Make My Dreams, Out of Touch, Rich Girl, Kiss on My List and Say It Isn’t So. 

The duo, known professionally as Hall & Oates, have hits such as Private Eyes, I Can't Go for That (No Can Do) and Maneater. They were pictured onstage in Florida in 2021

The duo, known professionally as Hall & Oates, have hits such as Private Eyes, I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do) and Maneater. They were pictured onstage in Florida in 2021 

The soft-rock-and-pop duo, pictured in 1985, also boast hits such as You Make My Dreams, Out of Touch, Rich Girl, Kiss on My List and Say It Isn't So

The soft-rock-and-pop duo, pictured in 1985, also boast hits such as You Make My Dreams, Out of Touch, Rich Girl, Kiss on My List and Say It Isn’t So

Daryl Hall and John Oates got their start as Temple University students before signing with Atlantic Records in 1972. 

In the decades since, they have achieved six platinum albums and many more Top 10 singles with their unique approach to blue-eyed soul. 

Hall & Oates was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2014 and its latest album, Home for Christmas, was released in 2006. The duo continued to perform as of last year.

‘We have this incredibly good problem of having so many hits,’ Oates told the AP in 2021, just before resuming a national tour that had been delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic. ‘Believe me, it’s not a chore to play those songs because they are really great.’



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