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Partying: Joel O'Keeffe

Where are the best aftershows?

On the bus, cos we’ve got a bar downstairs. And everyone in the band and the crew gets on really well.

You seem open to partying with fans.

Yeah, that happens a lot. On the last tour through Europe, we were in Sweden I think, and we went drinking in this bar in town. There was a bunch of fans and they had Trooper ale [Iron Maiden’s branded beer] there, so it was lots of fans all on the piss together. Awesome!

How do you play gigs with a hangover?

As soon as the intro tape rolls it’s just like: one, two, three, go! It doesn’t matter if you’re hungover, you’re healed for the next ninety minutes.

When did it first seem like a good idea to open a can of beer with your head?

I used to bash it with my hand. One time I split my wrist open. It was bleeding. So I thought: “Fuck it, I’ll just use my head.”

Ever tried to befriend wildlife while drunk?

I did sort of try to befriend a kangaroo once. We’d been driving, and it had been hit by something, so we stopped and tried to push it off the road. It jumped up, and I was like, “Fucking hell, it’s huge!”

What do your parents make of all this?

It’s kind of a Warrnambool attitude to life. When you grow up there, there’s nothing to do other than play footie, be in a band, and everything in between is just drinking.

Would you say that true happiness is an A chord or a beer with friends?

True happiness is when you’ve been drinking with friends and then you pick up a guitar and hit an A chord.

Polly is Features Editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage) and writes a few things. She also writes for Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer, and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.