Chet Faker (real name Nick Murphy) is known for having a slight problem with phones being used at his gigs, but he appears to have come to an understanding as to why most punters feel the need to snap pics, and his hypothesis centres around awkward first gig experiences.
Having now kicked off his mammoth Australian homecoming tour, Murphy dropped by triple j earlier today for a short Q&A with Breakfast hosts Matt Okine and Alex Dyson. Murphy fielded questions from fans as part of a segment called “Chet The Facts”, and gave a pretty lengthy response to a fan who asked about his tendency to politely ask fans to put away their phones.
Thankfully, Murphy saw the funny side of it, and taught us all a little bit more about ourselves.
“Some people who may have gone to my early shows would’ve seen me get kinda angry,” he laughed. “I didn’t deal with it well at the start. I was like, ‘What are you doing? Put your phone away.'”
“But then I realised for a lot of people that’s the only way they know how to experience a show, because — I’ve thought about this — when you go to your first show, everyone feels a bit awkward, you know? Like, ‘What do I do?’. A lot of people have a drink in the hand or whatever.
“But I get it now. When people go to shows and they’ll feel a bit awkward, you’ll just pull your phone out, so you don’t have to sit with that awkwardness.
“But what happens is by doing that you miss out on what other people learn, which is when you stay with that awkwardness, it goes away and then you start to move around and to feel comfortable, and that’s where you find what’s so amazing about live shows — that connection, that live thing.” That’s a far more diplomatic reaction than Ramones drummer Marky Ramone, who has a, let’s say, more combative solution for punters who hold up phones at gigs.
Murphy also draws attention to the question most concert attendees would have asked themselves at some point — are my videos even that good? “There are thousands of recordings,” Murphy said. “To assume that your handheld, wavy, blurred, distorted audio will be the best… that’s a tall order.”
Listen to Murphy field questions during his “Chet The Facts” session below — his phone theory crops up at 8:55. And maybe put your phone away if you’re catching him on tour. Just a thought.
Listen: “Chet the facts” with Chet Faker