I love concerts. I love seeing the people who make my favorite music do what they’re passionate about. I love music loud enough that I feel it vibrating in my bones. I love being surrounded by people who are as excited as I am, and I love thousands of voices joining me since I normally only sing alone in my car. Everything about concerts excites me and I was really excited to talk with a podcaster that shares my feelings on the subject. Let me introduce you to Lior Phillips and her podcast, This Must Be the Gig.
Lior grew up in South Africa, which she explained to me is “in a spot, geographically that makes it very cost-consuming and difficult for artists to go down to.” That didn’t change that she loved live shows, it just meant that she had to spend a lot more money to travel and attend shows and festivals she was excited about. But the travel never stopped her, and for years Lior has been a “music journalist and pop-culture journalist. So [she’s] always gone to festivals, gone to live shows, covered the scene.” Lior is also a photographer and takes pictures to pair with what she writes. But even with all of her coverage, she explained that she is “so obsessed with live performance and live music… to a point where [she] is endlessly curious about it.” And so This Must Be the Gig (a play off of “This Must Be the Place” by the Talking Heads) was born to fill in the gaps.
The tagline for the show is “every fan has a gig that changed their life, and so does every musician.” In order to learn about those gigs, Lior offers listeners “a backstage pass to the world of live music.” Lior explained that “each and every week [she] brings fascinating conversations [she has] right from either behind the scenes at a festival or with an artist who is currently on tour or has been on tour in the last couple of decades.” Lior’s guests range from “legacy acts” to brand new artists and even people in the business of live performance that aren’t musicians, like “festival founders, choreographers, comedians, actors and anyone as obsessed with performance as we are.”
While part of the show works to “take the glamour out of” concerts by getting to what live performance is really like. Lior is interested in “finding out what these people go through when they are performing” through an interview-based format that chooses interviewees that Lior “has a personal connection… either to their story or to something that they do.” This Must Be the Gig is also a “documentary podcast because we are accumulating stories from some of the biggest acts in the world: people that haven’t been covered before, stories that haven’t been told,” she told me. But making a podcast is still a bit different from journalism, and Lior had to adjust.
“In podcasting nothing is superfluous, everything is essential,” Lior said, telling me that as lucky as she has been to talk to the people she has gotten to talk to, podcasting as a whole is a lot to learn and to keep up with. But despite the difficulty, Lior has loved having an outlet for her endless curiosity and a medium that mimics the live performances she loves. “Because the conversation is in-depth and personal, you would hear what’s been cut and what hasn’t if we chopped it up too much so most of [the interviews] are quite raw and what you’re hearing is what happened,” she explained,drawing the comparison between the raw interviews and the uneditable nature of live shows.
So, if you love music, concerts, performance, festivals, or the stories behind the major names in the industry, listen to This Must Be the Gig and leave a rating and review to let Lior know what you think!