What's on your Rider?


Steve Wall of the Walls

What's on your Rider?When our mum would come to gigs some years back, she was always amazed at the spread in our dressing room and hated seeing stuff being left behind. She would nab the healthy stuff that no one wanted, like the apples, mandarins and nuts. Now our rider is the new slimline Recession Rider. It’s mostly beers, water, a hot meal, perhaps, paracetamol, some energy drinks and chewing gum. Nothing for mums, however.

What would be on your fantasy rider?A rider our mum would be proud of. Bring back the mandarins and Stolichnaya.

What’s your pre-gig ritual/ routine?A quiet pint in a nearby old man’s pub, preferably with someone who makes me laugh.

Who is the most famous person to have shown up at one of your gigs?There have been many, but we are most proud of seeing Paul McGrath at a recent show.

Most embarrassing on-stage moment?Years ago I got a bit out of it before a big show in the Olympia and couldn’t remember any lyrics. Joe had to prompt me throughout the show until it wore off. It was horrible – I never did that again. At the same gig, someone gave us a bottle of champagne onstage, I popped the cork and tried to spray the audience but the bottle slipped from my hand and flew into the front row, hitting a fan on the head.

What’s the most you’ve ever paid for a gig ticket?Tom Waits in Phoenix Park. It was about €140. Outrageous. I only did it as there was talk he might never be back again. Those kind of prices put too much of an onus on a show to be mind- blowing. People feel they need to get their money’s worth as opposed to just enjoying it. It was a great show, but not €140 worth of greatness.

Groupies. Would you?We receive and give hugs all the time. Lovely.

Have you a special stage wardrobe?I love those shirts you don’t need to iron.

Do you like to meet and greet fans after the gig?Yes, especially the one’s who know when to stop taking phone snaps.

Any useful stage tips?Tilt your amp directly towards your ears. If it’s facing the backs of your knees then the people in the front row are getting blasted and the soundman can’t do anything about it.

What’s the worst thing ever thrown at you?Dirty mens’ Y-fronts . . . in the face.

If you could be in any other band, which one?It used to be The Bad Seeds until I saw YouTube footage of Nick Cave dragging Warren Ellis across the stage by the scruff of the neck at a Grinderman gig, because he was playing out of time or something. Disgraceful. It’d be cool to be in Imelda May’s band. But I couldn’t play like Darrel Higham, unfortunately.

Who’s invited to your aftershow party?Vincent Browne.

What’s your best tour story?Listening to Roy Keane sing Blowing in the Wind in Lillie’s Bordello after Ireland beat Holland in the World Cup qualifier 2001. We had just supported U2 that day in Slane, and ended up celebrating with the Irish team in Dublin city that night. It was a day to remember.

In conversation with TONY CLAYTON-LEA.

The Walls play Whelan’s, Dublin on Thursday