In a world where particular last names can get you anywhere and social media followers are the only importance in some peoples eyes, it's rare to find raw talent-very rare. So stumbling across Nader Mansour, the frontman of Lebanese blues band, The Wanton Bishops, was a breath of much needed fresh air. Thanks to a random stumble on Instagram, we've now discovered a new level of style, sound and all round coolness. The award winning musician sits down with TFH to discuss his life on and off the road.
What’s a typical day in the life of The Wanton Bishops? Wake up, clean up and suit up. Indulge in a lonely contemplative feast for breakfast then coffee and a couple of cigarettes in the sunny or rainy garden depending on the season. This ritual is essential before welcoming the musicians for a rehearsal or writing session or tackling the endless list of emails, skype calls or meetings. By half day, the headquarters are buzzing with work, whether it’s the office, or the music room. Lunch with the bunch, then back to work. People in and out, a fair amount of procrastination until happy hour is upon us. The rest is somewhat of a blur.
Where did the name The Wanton Bishops come from? Madonna was taken, so..
What’s your backstage ritual? Other than ingurgitating “reasonable” quantities of some sort of inebriating golden elixir? We tend to go in circles shouting hula hula 56 times then standing on one foot while violently banging with our elbows on anything made of wood; The backstage often looks like a circus.
Three things you cant live without? My notebook, a good book, and my phone unfortunately.
Your secret to surviving your world tours? Family time, work out, and deliberate routine when we’re not on the road. Oh, and, not seeing each other as much as possible..
What’s the proudest achievement so far in your musical career? To still be doing it, against all odds, coming where we come from.
The ultimate musician to collaborate with? Sir Robert Plant I’d say. This eternal troubadour oozing wisdom, melody and rhythms.
The best and worst part of your job? The worst would be the fundamentally crooked way the industry is built. Being the creator of a whole economic circle, the artist often ends up being the one who makes the least money in the chain. But nothing, and I mean nothing on God’s green earth can ever compare to the roar of a big audience when we first take the stage. And that, is the best feeling in the world.
One fashion item you couldn’t live without? I have a genuine problem with fashion, particularly with the intrinsically shifting aspect of trends. I stick to a classic style, with a couple of adventurous items or patters no matter where fashion goes. But to answer your question: The pocket square. It’s such an underrated item, although to me, probably one of the most important.
If you could raid one musicians closet who would it be? Nick Cave! The man has class.