Hackney music man who worked on Oasis Be Here Now tour calls it a day

Steve Honest in the studio

Steve Honest in the studio - Credit: Archant

Steve Honest has called time on his 40 years in the music industry and left his Hackney Road Studios.

Steve Honest

Steve Honest - Credit: Archant

He was a session musician at 15, has worked with so many stars he doesn’t have room for his platinum discs and even ran his own recording studio.

Steve Honest may be about to retire, but it’s safe to say he’s had some fun. He’s worked with Culture Club, Eurythmics, Fleetwood Mac, Dizzee Rascal, One Direction and toured internationally with Oasis for Be Here Now.

Understandably the latter is the first thing that comes up when we speak. Most of it he says he can’t speak about, though some things did slip through.

“I was on the Perth flight when Liam tried to start a fight with the pilot,” he confessed. “I jumped up and said: ‘It might be a good idea to do it once we’ve landed.’ We all got arrested and we spent the rest of the tour with air marshals.”

It all started for Steve at 15, when he lived in Hoxton and “lucked into” a job as a session musician after only three years playing bass.

“I just got invited to play on some tracks for a movie about Eddie Kidd the stunt man,” said Steve, 56. “I was playing with guys 15 years older than me and I never wanted to go home. I’d do three sessions a day and hang around the studio. I wanted to learn engineering and they’d let me get involved and it went from there. It was mostly soundtrack and TV work at first.”

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Then came the touring years with the big name acts as a sound engineer, guitar technician and tour manager. He worked a lot with Dave Stewart of Eurythmics fame and also on Michael Jackson’s £125million Bad tour. Not surprisingly he never saw him – “there was 180 of us there.”

He’s got plenty of platinum discs, the latest of which was for his work on One Direction’s Made in the A.M. Most of them are at his mum’s place in Essex, though some are on display in Hackney Road Studios, which he opened six years ago. “I wanted to get classic analogue equipment from the ’60s and ’70s,” he said. “We had Damon Albarn doing drums for the last Bobby Womack album. Alexis Taylor from Hot Chip loved the 1907 Bluthner piano so much he wrote an album on it, and has now bought it.”

He’s now left the music world, but he hasn’t strayed too far. He’s just launched a vegan shoe shop – in Hackney Road.