For nearly 40 years, Tim Finn has been making music.
Whether part of the Split Enz or Crowded House (with his brother, Neil) or as solo artist, Finn considers himself a musician and a songwriter first and foremost.
"I don't really think about what I'm writing or for which project," said Finn during a phone call from his home in New Zealand. "I just write and then see if it works."
Finn said that philosophy is much removed from where his thoughts were when he first embarked on a professional music career.
"I think I was where all young boys were at that time," he said. "I wanted to be in the biggest band in the world. And when I was in the Split Enz, I really felt we were there.
"But throughout my career, especially solo, I have been under the radar," he said. "And people have accepted that."
Finn is gearing up to release his new full-length studio CD, "The Conversation." It will be released later this year in Australia and New Zealand and early next year in the United States.
"I was originally thinking of releasing a 'best of' collection and go back through all my songs," Finn said. "But a friend of mine who was at my record label, and who has since left the label, said, 'Why don't you do a new one?' And I thought, 'Yeah, Why don't I?' So I did."
Finn named the CD "The Conversation," because that's what he had in mind when he was getting the songs together.
"I had this thought in my head that an album should be like a conversation," said Finn, who wrote for roughly 10 months and recorded 18 songs.
"There are 13 that made it to the album," he said. "So there will be some leftovers for a 'rarities' disc sometime later."
Speaking of a rarities disc, Finn released an eight-track extended play CD called "Rarities/Demos/Love Performances Vol. 1" in July, which is available for download on his Myspace page (www.myspace.com/timfinnmusic).
"Some of the songs I haven't heard for more than a decade," he said. "I went into the compilation trying to find the songs from tapes that jumped out at me.
"It was great fun and a lot of memories. I'm hoping there will be a Volume 2."
While Finn was rummaging through his old tapes, he had a chance to reflect on his career."If you would have told me 20 years ago that I'd be in my mid-50s still making music, I would have laughed in your face," he said. "But throughout the years, the fans have seen the history unfold. And what has helped me is the fact that I'm not mainstream. And I just need to have one good song every few years to keep my career alive. However, it is gratifying to me that when I do tour, people are glad to see me."
If you go ...
What: Tim Finn
Where: The Paladium, 415 W. 600 North
When: Thursday, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $20
Phone: 467-8499, 800-888-8499