Rob Nassif’s Hen House Live to hatch new Perth bands


Rob Nassif. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d458901
Rob Nassif. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d458901

GYROSCOPE drummer Rob Nassif knows only too well the hard work and pure determination behind a band’s success.

He started helping Perth’s musician community in 2010 when he bought RNR Rehearsal Rooms in Osborne Park, renaming it The Hen House Rehearsal Studios after the neighbouring chicken factory, and has furthered this with intimate live music space The Hen House Live, which opens on Saturday night.

“Gyroscope had rehearsed at RNR from 1999,” Nassif said.

“We had a permanent room and wrote all our albums there; it was a real dive and everyone passed it off as just being rock ’n’ roll but it’s not rock ’n’ roll to not have toilet paper in the bathroom.”

Just like he saw potential in the rehearsal studio space, which was turned into a creative haven for local musicians, Nassif has now followed his ambition of opening a 100-capacity rock ’n’ roll bar to support fledgling bands.

The Hen House Live is at 1/3 Aberdeen Street, Perth in the former entrance to Devilles Pad, which is now Badlands Bar, owned by Mark Partridge.

“I’d been organising shows at various venues called Hen House Fresh Jams, which focused on bands who have played 10 shows or less, because most booking agents in Perth don’t want to deal with those bands,” Nassif said.

“Mark knew what I’d been doing and approached me to offer the space; I thought it was perfect as soon as I saw it.

“So if you’re a band wanting to play a show, you don’t need to rehearse at the rehearsal studio, all you have to do is register on our website and I’ll give you a show.”

The Hen House Live has two two-hour gigs at 8pm and 10pm on Friday and Saturday nights.

Entry is $10 at the door, which then includes free entry to Badlands Bar afterwards.

The opening night line-up includes pop punk bands Lions and Lambs and Small Town Heroes, followed by rock acts Old Devil and Graphic Characters.

“All the bands get paid but it’s not about trying to make lots of money, it’s about making a cool, little space unlike any other live music venue in Perth,” Nassif said.

“A lot of bands might rehearse for six months to a year before they play their first show and then they struggle to know how to book it or who to speak to.

“We were lucky in the late 1990s/2000s to have a couple of rooms like this but there’s a whole generation of bands who haven’t played in this kind of venue.

“I think the musicians and music fans of Perth will really dig it.”

Visit www.thehenhouse.com.au/live to register your band or see the line-up.