‘People started walking out of my gigs’: Darren Hanlon on losing faith and moving home

Photo: Simon Fazio

Originally published in The Guardian, March 2022

“It’s kind of strange, being plonked back into your former life, as an adult,” Darren Hanlon says. The 48-year old musician is on the phone, sitting in the old housing commission home he grew up in. The story of how he ended up back in Gympie, in southeast Queensland, has a New Testament ring to it. First, his partner, Shelley Short – the US folk singer who first duetted with Hanlon on his 2010 single All These Things  discovered she was pregnant. Living on opposite sides of the Pacific Ocean, the expectant parents reunited in Portland in February 2020, when a plague spreading across the US west coast forced them to make a snap decision to flee.

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