Ever wonder what happens beyond the stage? Well we do. These roadies, managers, guitar techs, lighting directors, A&R, and even positions you may not have known about make the music you love come alive! We spoke with the hilarious Louis Bhose to get a grasp on what tricks he pulls behind the scenes of our favourite bands!
AMBY: How did you first get into your industry?
LB: I played music in school I guess.
AMBY: Explain to people what you do and which instruments you play.
LB: I work for bands when they decide that they want someone farting around with keyboards instead of a backing track.
AMBY: Which bands are you currently working with and which have previously worked with?
LB: Currently been with Bombay Bicycle Club for almost three years. Previous bands I’ve worked for include Theme Park, Summer Camp, Eliza Doolittle, Cocknbullkid and my first school band Hacksaw to the Throat.
AMBY: What is the craziest thing to happen to you while touring?
LB: I asked Joey Santiago of the Pixies if he knew Slash. I was so nervous I didn’t know what to say. He looked puzzled and said he didn’t. I laughed loudly and for too long before walking away.
AMBY: What do you do for fun while on tour?
LB: Sit in a darkened room on Facebook perving on girls out of my league.
AMBY: What is the best and worst thing about your gig?
LB: It’s hard, playing keyboards. Not the actual playing part, but what to do with your body. Instruments like guitars, basses and drums naturally lend themselves to the movements that happen in a rock show. Keyboards do not. As far as I’m concerned it’s damage control: you will look like an idiot, it’s just how much you avoid looking like a TOTAL idiot. You can’t just stand still as you’ll look like a lemon when everyone’s rocking out but rock out TOO hard and you look like you’re trying too hard. And you’ll probably bang your head on your keyboard. It’s even harder when you’re not in the band but working for them. Because people won’t go, “oh look, there’s the keyboard player Edwin/Charles/Peregrin really GOING FOR IT”, they’ll go “look at everyone rocking out, wow, what a spectacle. Hold on, who’s that guy at the back having an epilectic fit around various electronics?”. They don’t know what you look like up close, so you’re just this small figure at the back distracting them from the ROCKSTARS onstage like an extra in a movie who keeps glancing at the camera. Now, that’s not to say some people can’t pull it off. You look at the top session guys, they know how to pull it off. They sit down, they wink at each other and laugh while stretching their right arm out and making a “what are you doing?!” face at their incredibly dexterous hand. They have names like Latrell or Julius and can probably tell you what Thelonius Monk was ‘doing’ in ‘Round Midnight’. I am a short, stocky man in constant need of reassurance that I don’t look silly flapping my hair about onstage. This may sound like I’m having a gripe about my job; I’m not, and I really enjoy it. There’s sometimes free coffee at load in.
AMBY: Which three albums changed your life?
LB: I think that ‘life changing’ is a very strong sentiment. I don’t think three albums have CHANGED my life but I would say that Bruce Springsteen’s entire back catalogue, 2001: A Space Odyssey and Annie Hall are three things that inspire me with total awe in a ‘WHAT IS LIFE’ sort of way.
AMBY: Where is the best spot to eat on tour?
LB: Well, In-N-Out Burger is a pretty standard answer for this I imagine, so I’ll switch it up and say that Stalactites in Melbourne makes a lamb kebab that brings a tear to my eye as I recall it. Perfect, perfect kebabery.
AMBY:. And lastly, what’s something about you that nobody knows yet?
LB: I can’t think of anything that Jamie MacColl doesn’t already know.
Thank you so very much Louis, for giving me your answers!