Entertainment attorney Craig Hayes, who represented artists such as Faith Hill and Aaron Neville as well as music business clients, passed away at his home on Feb. 5. He was 75.
In addition to being an attorney, Hayes was a road manager and a musician himself. The Arlington, Virginia native earned a B.A. in Economics and Business from Wofford College in South Carolina in 1968. After spending three semesters at the University of North Carolina School of Law, Hayes quit school to play music for seven years. He then returned to school, graduating in 1978 with a Juris Doctorate in Law. Hayes also studied copyright, motion picture television, and First Amendment law at Duke Law School from 1977-1978.
After graduation, Hayes was admitted to the State and Federal Bar in Tennessee while working as an associate at Thompson, Harris, and Leach. He left to form a new firm, Thompson & Hayes, with Robert Thompson in 1981.
In 1983, Hayes once again took a hiatus to play music, joining Neil Young’s band as a baritone sax player and creating the character “Vito Toledo” on Young’s “Shocking Pink Tour.” He also recorded with Young and Crazy Horse during this time.
Following his time on stage, Hayes formed the law partnership Zumwalt, Almon & Hayes. An involved member of the community, Hayes was part of Leadership Music’s Class of 1996.
Craig Hayes is survived by his wife Pamela Brown Hayes, a singer-songwriter who crafted such hits as “I Can Love You Better” by the The Chicks and “In Your Eyes”by Aaron Neville. Hayes is also survived by sons Luke Aaron Hayes and Samuel Clemens (Kristen) Hayes; and siblings Curtis (Jessica) Hampton, Robert (Bobby) Hayes, and Leslie Hampton-Lash.
A celebration of life for Hayes will be held at a later date.