One-man show: Chennai-based live loop artist is a band by himself
CHENNAI: As people are dancing, some even swaying to Ed Sheeran’s voice blasting through the speakers, he was lost in his own wonderment.
Even the bright blinding stage lights that illuminated their faces did not distract him. He had all his eyes set on Ed Sheeran’s looping station. For 32-year-old Troydon Netto, who is a live loop artist, the gadget was his missing piece.
Talking to DT Next about his early introduction to music, he says, “It began at the age of 11. My dad taught me a few guitar chords and I was hooked to the instrument for 2-3 years and then got bored. My interest in drums and keyboard met with the same fate. I got bored after learning them.”
After working for a management consulting firm for 7 and a half years as a graphic designer, Troy decided that he wanted to explore his music. “As much as the job offered me stability, I lost my love for it and decided I had to leave. When I quit, I had no plans; eyes closed head first. The leap of faith did cost me a bit financially, but it was worth it,” he chuckles.
Troy played for several bands as a backup artist and even did karaoke sessions at events before venturing into live looping full-time. “In 2018, I had gone to Ed Sheeran’s concert in Mumbai and when I saw him doing the work of an entire band all by himself with just a guitar and his looping station, the challenge of it excited me. I wanted to try it too.”
He bought himself a looping station and explored the equipment. After having gotten the hang of it, he put himself out there and offered to perform free gigs anywhere he had the chance.
“My parents have always been very supportive of my decisions. Knowing that they had my back in case I needed help was very comforting. But I ensured things didn’t get that bad and kept hustling through gigs for 5-6 months,” he adds.
Recalling an incident that happened to him during a live show, he says, “A patron requested me to play Piano Man by Billy Joel. Without a thought, I got the loops ready and began singing. When I had to sing the 5th stanza of the song, a sudden wave of gloominess just washed over me as I sang, ‘Bill, I believe this is killing me… Well, I’m sure that I could be a movie star. If I could get out of this place’.
“I had heard the song thousands of times. But I felt it only that day.”
“The rush of being able to play all the instruments in a song and having it ready under 2 minutes to perform, makes me feel euphoric. When I perform, seeing people who genuinely appreciate and enjoy the craft keeps me going,” he smiles.
Other than, live performances and shows on a bigger scale, what is next for Troy? “I have a collection of my own songs that I want to release. But whenever I think about releasing them, I feel they are not good enough and shelve them. So hopefully, finding the courage to release my album and continuing to amuse people through my music are on cards for me,” he smiles.
The rush of being able to play all the instruments in a song and having it ready under 2 minutes to perform, makes me feel euphoric. When I perform, seeing people who genuinely appreciate and enjoy the craft keeps me going