The Teskey Brothers' touring ingenuity

There’s a few special moves The Teskey Brothers use on tour to keep their collective heads cool and the show on the road. Liam Gough, Sam and Josh Teskey share their techniques.

Hear the story of Run Home Slow on 180 Grams, a music documentary podcast from Mushroom – listen here.

Liam Gough. Thrifty individual. Have drumkit, will travel.

Liam Gough, drummer in The Teskey Brothers
Liam Gough, drummer in The Teskey Brothers Photo credit: Jeremy Furze

Within Australia, for musicians travelling on Virgin Australia airlines, 64 kilograms was free.

The airline would double the 32 kilogram luggage allowance for artists at no cost.

Liam, with his kit that’s minimal by comparison to others, sets about trying to figure out how he can fly the entire kit safely at a total weight of 64 kgs.

It took a bit of nutting out.

“You start looking at things like cymbals which are, you know, the plates of bronze. There’s a lot of heavy parts, the hardware and drums,” he said.

He weighed each part of the kit and sourced protective cases for travel, “ because airlines are horrifically rough with gear.”

The solution?

“I ended up figuring out that I could babushka doll my rack tom into my floor tom and my floor tom into my bass drum with a series of thin bits of polystyrene and foam. They were protected and then they would fit inside a bass drum case.

“And then I built a custom case to fit the snare cymbals and hardware all packed down. It was all on wheels. And yeah, so there’s two cases at 32 kilos.”

Hear the story of Run Home Slow on 180 Grams, a music documentary podcast from Mushroom – listen here.

Sam Teskey’s portable recording setup

Sam's portable recorder.
Sam's portable recorder. Right size to take as carry-on luggage when travelling too. Photo credit: Al Parkinson

Always travelling with Sam, fitting into a hand luggage-sized suitcase, is a custom built portable recorder.

UK tour manager Tom Rogers described the home made wooden box on 180 Grams, “It’s a thing of beauty, it really is!”

“On the top there’s space for a laptop, which I think is Velcroed down. It might be on a sliding drawer that comes out.

“Two mics on clamps, one for your vocal one for your guitar that sort of stick out and then there’s a preamp at the bottom of the mic that the guitars go into and then into the laptop. It also has a power supply so you can charge your phone off it, with one power cord to run it all.

“And you’ve got your whole set-up it …it’s a wonderful thing. It really is.”

Tom’s seen Sam recording “in the van on the tour bus, in hotels, in dressing rooms. You’d stick it on the picnic table backstage at a festival and just knock out some demos.”

Sam's portable recording box
Sam's portable recording box front on with additional equipment. Photo credit: Holger Christoph

Josh Teskey, singer and resourceful hydrator

He’s a qualified plumber as well as singer, songwriter and guitarist in The Teskey Brothers.

Everyone on a Teskey’s tour carries a water bottle, but sometimes there’s a sink in the way of the tap when you need to fill it.

“This is where it’s handy to have a musician plumber.”

Here’s the how-to video.

Being a musician plumber also came in handy once when he remembered he had a pocket knife on him at the airport.

Not wanting to take it on the plane he hid it in the cistern in a nearby bathroom, only to collect it when they arrived back.

Josh also has a foldable bike that travels with him overseas. 

Waiting for the gigs to start with a few hours idle, Josh will take off around the city and explore.

Hear the story of Run Home Slow on 180 Grams, a music documentary podcast from Mushroom – listen here.

VIDEO: The Making of Run Home Slow