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Spot-lite on Teebs


As part of our celebrations for our 5th Birthday, I've been sitting down and asking the band a list of insightful questions so that you can find out more about what makes us, us.


The second interview in this series is with Teebs, our wonderful keyboard player. If you're a reader of these blogs, you might know that Teebs was originally a groom who booked us to play at his wedding in June 2022. We'd been discussing his wedding for a lot longer than usual, due to Covid delaying the happy nuptials. We'd discussed that Teebs was a keyboard player and we'd decided he was going to get up and do a little spot with us. He'd requested 'Johnny B Goode' as a special request and that was the song he got up to do. We were absolutely blown away! He absolutely slayed that tune. Needless to say, it wasn't very long until we called him to come and play again, and he's done a few jobs over the months. Finally, we plucked up the courage and asked Teebs if he'd like to go full time, and he said Yes!


And that was the start of having Teebs as a fully fledged Reggulite. We haven't looked back, and if you read this interview, it will be very clear why!



Helen: So, where are you from and where did you grow up?


Teebs: Me, I'm from a little village called Brailes which is near Shipston on Stour. Nice little market town in the arse end of nowhere.

Helen: Is it one of those places that everybody hits sixteen and tries to get out?


Teebs: No, not at all! We've got a big group of mates around there and we've all managed to stay around that area. We're all a good bunch of mates and it's a nice local community. I can't ever imagine moving out to be fair, it's great.

Helen: That's good. So when did you start playing music?


Teebs: I started playing music when I was about three years old. My Mom bought me a little Casio keyboard which had about one octave on it, and I managed to play. Some of the first tunes I used to play - it had a demo button called Venus on it and I think I started learning to play along to that, and it just went from there. I got a bit of a bigger one when I'd grown up a little bit and then just played ever since. Always had a love for it.

Helen: And you've always played the keyboard?


Teebs: Always played the keyboard. Never played anything else. No - I used to be able to play about three chords on guitar...Wonderwall. But that's about it. I've always stuck to keys.

Helen: Some people dabble.


Teebs: Yeah, I used to dabble. But I've never been able to read music either. I've always played by ear. So I can listen to something and can pick it up pretty easy. I used to have piano lessons as a kid as well.I used to look at the sheet music pretending I knew how to read it but I listened to my tutor playing it first.

Helen: You know, I actually forgot how to read music for about six years of my adolescence because I'd been playing the main tune for so long that I just kney how they all went. And then one day, Anna said to me that we should play a duet out of this book, and I was like 'I don't know how that goes.' And she was like... 'What?' 'Well I don't know I think I've forgotten.' I just completely forgot because I was just doing it by ear.


Teebs: Yeah, I used to get really nervous when I used to do me grades and stuff. I got to grade four and then that was it.

Helen: Oh I only got to Grade Four as well.


Teebs: It got a bit more technical then and you actually genuinely have to read music and I was like 'OK, this is not for me.'

Helen: And you've been rebelling against the system ever since?


Teebs: Ever since, yeah.



Helen: Can you remember what and where your first performance was?


Teebs: I remember my first proper performance. I started with the first band, proper band, I'd ever played in. It was called Renegade. And we were a proper little funk band and it was all original stuff and we played Battle of the Bands at Cox's Yard in Stratford. Oh my God, and we used to be proper little stoners and we were like, really nervous, and we ended up playing the first round thinking we had no chance and ended up being one of the better bands there. And we realised, you know what, we're actually all right. How old was I...about 15-16. And we managed to get a little cult following and stuff like that, and we kept progressing through the rounds, week on week.
The last performance we did, we got through to the final and it was against the DJ. It was more of a popularity contest. We were pretty good and we ended up winning it. So that was our first ever proper performance.

Helen: Wow, ok. So what kind of music would you say you're influenced by?


Teebs: Oh it's funny. I grew up listening to like trance and techno and all that sort of stuff. I was quite into euphoric chords and really into my synthesisers. But I'm also really into funk and soul and reggae and anything that's like got a vibe or provokes some emotion. I'll be listening to music in my car that no one would ever guess I'm into, like classical. Anything really. Anything I can take an ear to or listen to it and take influence from it. So I have no one direction. I went to like, liquid - it was more melodic and more chordage. So I was into all that sort of stuff as well.

Helen: OK, so the big question, how did you get the name Teebs?


Teebs: Right, well, it was when we first started drinking when I was about twelve years old! My mate had a caravan down the bottom of his Auntie's garden and it was where we all started getting together and drinking and stuff. It was the first place we could all go as kids and just be away from our parents. I had two bottles of Carlsberg Export and puked everywhere. And they called me Tom Bryan Two Beers, my mates did. And it slowly derived into T B 2 B and from there it just turned into Teebs. So from twelve years old all my mates called me Teebs and everywhere we went I used to get introduced as Teebs. And nobody ever knew why apart from my close mates who were in that situation with me at the time. Everywhere we went I would be introduced as Teebs, so people four times my age would be like 'All right Teebs?'. Nobody knew why I was called that. A lot of people thought that was my genuine name! Like that's a weird name, where did that come from? But yeah, it's from being a little pisshead when I was about twelve years old.

Helen: That's hilarious. OK, in your own words how did you get into The Reggulites? You had to pay your way in, obviously!


Teebs: Yeah, after playing a massive wedge after my wedding! Yeah, I got up and played a tune with them as a guest which was a bit of a surprise for everybody. I didn't really think anything would come of it and I managed to get on with all you guys and stuff like that. And you're a great vibe and I just ended up loving what you do. And then I got asked to do a couple of gigs here and there and I was happy to do that on the side and then it just grew from there. And I've never looked backed it's like the best thing I've ever done. It's brilliant and everyone's amazing.

Helen: They are pretty amazing.


Teebs: They are!



Helen: So what's your favourite song in our repertoire?


Teebs: I did like the Bob Marley one...what was the Bob Marley one we did for a while...it was a bit more rocky?


Helen: Oh, I Shot The Sheriff.


Teebs: I loved that one for ages because I wasn't massively good at playing reggae! As I've got more into it, Clive's really helped me out with learning like the KUDUGGA KUDUGGA (note from Helen - That's bubbling on the keyboard!) . I quite enjoyed Lady for a bit. That was a really good tune. And complicated. Really hard, yeah.

Helen: I think that's why we like it. It's got a lot going on.


Teebs: Need Your Love I'm really enjoying at the minute. That's a great tune. Yeah, anything you play, I love it all. I love rinsing out the clav to Last War/Come Around. And Rock Fort Rock's a good one because I love listening to you girls on the horns. I can just take a step back and listen to you girls blast it which is really good.

Helen: I've only just managed to get my b*ll***s with that tune. We had it in the set for ages and I would just do the same solo. Proper playing it safe. But now I'm just like ****ing 'av it!


Teebs: Just improvise and go with it.


Helen: Yeah! What's your favourite gig to date with us?


Teebs: I would have to say probably my wedding, because that's where it all started. And I only had to play one song. The rest I could just take a step back and enjoy it and get really really drunk.

Helen: OK, let's talk pets because they're so important. Tell me about your boys.


Teebs: They're doberman stroke collies, and they're the best boys in the world. I wouldn't ever want to be without them. Rolo's thirteen now, bless him, and Ronnie's five. He's got so much energy that we started doing agility with him of a Thursday night and he's got so much energy and so much love to give. And he's so much my dog that I just wouldn't be without him now. And they're at home on their own tonight as well, so I dread to think what they're doing. But they'll be all right, bless them.

Helen: Beautiful boyos. What's your favourite thing about the band?


Teebs: The people. Definitely. And the vibe. The music is amazing and it makes everything but it's just the people in it. Everybody's a character. Everybody's welcoming. There's just so much love and you can tell everything you do is done for the love of it. It's not done for the followers or this and that. It's just done for the fact that you purely love what you're doing. And it's great to be a part of that cause that's what I'm all about as well. So it's lovely and I really appreciate the fact that you've had me on board and I just hope we can continue to grow it. I hope this is just the start.

Helen: Well, this is actually a job interview and if you don't pass it -


Teebs: Oh is it? If this was a genuine interview I'd be out the door!


Helen: Last question. What are you looking forward to the most with the band in the future?


Teebs: I've got some foundations now and I've started learning how to actually play reggae because Clive and people like that have obviously influenced me on how to play it properly. And I think I've grown with that a little bit. Whereas before I didn't have a clue! And it's just seeing where it goes from here in terms of carrying on doing what we're doing and just having a good time. And I hope that what we're doing right now continues for the next...however long...as long as -

Helen: We can keep everyone alive?


Teebs: I just hope you'll keep having me along and for that reason I'll always stick with you.


Helen: Oh, Teebs, that was brilliant.



 

As you can see, Teebs has a true Reggulite heart. He's passionate about music. He never stops striving and learning and above everything, he loves his reggae family and he enjoys what we all do together. At some point, hopefully, Teebs will start referring to the band as 'us' and 'we' rather than 'you', lol.

We really appreciate having someone as committed and caring as Teebs in our line up, and things will only get better and better from here! We'll always stick by Teebs too, because he's family now.


We hope you enjoyed reading our Spot-lite on Teebs and we hope that you check out the interviews with the other band members when they are available.




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