Frank Gallagher: El Rio Soundman, Self-Proclaimed “Old Bastard,” and S.F. Rock Lifer

The Soundman: “President, Sound Engineer, and Bad Tempered Old Bastard,” is the title on Frank Gallagher's business card. But the surliness there and on the card's slogan — “Intimidating musicians since 1975” — is contradicted somewhat by the man's demeanor, as well as his occupation. Gallagher is the longtime sound man at El Rio; he's run the mixing board at this beloved Mission dive bar and live venue for more than 25 years. And even he will admit that you don't spend a quarter-century improving the sound of bands most people have not heard of — and will never hear of — if you don't really love it.

“It keeps you young,” Gallagher says of his work, with a gravelly chuckle. “When a band is on, and the hair on your arm stands up, you know they're doing something right, and you know you're doing something right — it's as good as sex…” [continue reading]

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