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Byron Shire
July 16, 2024

Interview with Steve Banks

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Steve Banks and the Sideshow

Steve Banks and The Sidemen are the main event

Steve Banks and The Sidemen are back for an intimate, partially-unplugged show at the Brunswick Picture House in Brunswick Heads on Saturday, July 6.

The Sidemen – Jeff Burstin, Mike Mills, Grant Gerathy, Tony Slavich and Geoff Wright – are heading into a new venue, with new songs and a new format.

The show will begin ‘unplugged’ featuring Jeff Burstin – then the amps will be cranked up. Frontman Steve will open up on some of their personal stories between songs. Special guest Guy Kachel kicks-off the show and vocalist Chloe West features with the band. Seven spoke to Steve on the weekend to get some insights into the show.

It’s been eight months since we last spoke – it feels a bit like The Sidemen are becoming the Main Men – is what started as a bit of a side hustle, turning into THE hustle?

Yeah, look, it’s really heartwarming for me. I mean, I think I told you the last time we chatted, the main reason for doing this was, I met these guys serendipitously – I was a friend of Jeff Burstin from the Black Sorrows. We did an album together and we wanted to play together up here. He’s based in Melbourne and he said, ‘well, listen, we can’t bring the whole band up, so see if we can find some musos locally. Every single muso I was introduced to had a pedigree as long as my arm. I thought, ‘oh my God’, and then all of a sudden it just became less about playing songs from the album that we recorded and more about shining the light on these guys. And that’s what it’s all about. And the good thing is that now The Sidemen family is about 20 strong!

So what’s happened since I spoke to you last October?

The last gig we did was the one at Lennox. We’ve been in the studio since then recording – people keep asking for The Sidemen to play on their songs. So, we’ve been up at Bernard Fanning’s studio in Brooklet doing some recording. This will be the first gig we’ve done since Lennox because most of the guys have been touring.

Tell me what is special about this show?

The format of this one’s a little different. Because we’re at that beautiful, intimate venue at Brunswick Picture House, we’re actually doing a bit of a focus acoustically with Jeff Burstin, myself and Guy Kachel on harmonica – we’re doing some blues tunes. And we’re going through the whole process of how Jeff writes his songs. It’s going to be a lot of fun.

What do you think, for you this time, is going to be the highlight of this show?

For me, I think sitting down and playing acoustically with Jeff. Some of the most magical moments have occurred after the show, when we have a little whiskey and we sit down and we start playing and you know, it’s four o’clock in the morning and we’re still going. I want to try and replicate some of that magic on stage.

Steve, are you having enough fun?

Oh God yes! It’s the best fun ever. I get excited about it as soon as we book the venue. I just love doing it. Yeah, I love telling the stories and I love the format and it seems like the audience does too!

This will be a great show at the Brunswick Picture House – don’t miss it!

Doors open at 7pm with support Guy Kachel on at 7.15pm and the main event at 8.15pm.

Get your tickets from brunswickpicturehouse.com/steve-banks-sidemen-6-jul.

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