J 315 / Bertrand Chaillou / 49 years old / L’Aiguillon sur Vie / singer musician

Holidays by the sea…one of Bertrand’s favorite titles; on stage, but also in life. Hyper sensitive, thoughtful, tongue-in-cheek, generous: this is how he defines himself. He too has made his passion his profession, with one requirement: that of meeting and pleasing the public, and as a bonus the big advantage of sharing which erases the roughness of hard work. The Covid has caused a sudden stop for more than two years. Place today for recovery.

His father played the bugle, his mother, an artist at heart, helped out in the village musical garden. The notes have been part of his daily life since his early childhood. “I have a little dreamy side that made me more comfortable with the treble clef than with school”. His father aspires for him a real job, not a fun. “I followed the path of carpentry, up to the BTS. At 33, I suffered from back pain; From then on, I devoted myself totally to music”. He had never stopped, since in addition to the work, from the moment of debauchery, he swapped the carpenter’s plane to walk his fingers on the keyboard.

Bertrand is 17 years old when he plays in the SHOWYS group, his lifelong group where he forms a singing duo (as in life) with Marina. “We did concerts in cafés, then wedding balls, company parties… We don’t have a bagpipe repertoire, rather variety shows”. When he’s not on stage, he’s on the road helping with sound setup and technique. He is also the kingpin of the “Festival D-32”, a traveling festival in the municipalities of the Vendée coast. “We did four editions at Aiguillon-sur-Vie, two at Saint Hilaire de Riez and one at Saint Gilles-Croix-de-Vie”. He also participates in the charity operation ‘Les Rockeurs ont du cœur’ in Saint Gilles. “The objective is to collect toys to redistribute them to underprivileged children at Christmas time”.

Generosity, a state of mind that he shares with his wife. “Our friends have an autistic child, Victor. For his parents, it’s almost H24 without respite. He is eight years old, a real energy pump; but how endearing he is! We are undertaking various actions to give a little boost to the ASF 85 association, via the D-32 festival, or through the Gazelles raid in which Marina participated for three weeks”. Sharing, meeting are their common values. “We regularly go to Morocco, south of Agadir with friends. We help families, it’s also a great school for our children, an openness to the world. We always come back richer…”. A dental technician, Marina has also stopped working. “We live from our passion and we appreciate this freedom. We are not always together, however, especially when I work as a technician. Detachment also contributes to our balance as a couple”.

Bertrand has kept carpentry as a pleasure, in DIY mode. “I spend a lot of time with Enzo, our son, a surfing and swimming enthusiast. I realized that I was a bit like my father in wanting to attract him to music. It’s not his thing at all.” Only child, a choice guided by work. “The week at the nanny’s, the weekend at the granny’s… That’s why Marina quit her job. In fifteen years, we had established a loyal clientele. With a good dose of willpower, we managed to make music our job for both of us”.

He is annoyed by an omnipresent media world, which brings rain and shine. “I try to watch less, even if I still follow the news. It’s not worth a good walk by the sea, a sunset…”. He can’t completely let go. “Political debates…what a deplorable image for our youngest. It’s no wonder they need somewhere else. My son would like to be a shaper, to go with friends to different corners of the world; I understand “. Yet Bertrand appreciates his living environment. “We are lucky to live in a beautiful region, with a still buoyant economy. More broadly, we can see that the French are afraid, that they are a bit lost. It is not reassuring”.

Bertrand can isolate himself with his headphones to listen to concerts in streaming, but more often than not, he prefers to be in active mode. “Being in charge of the group I am the representative of or of the festival reassures me, just as being surrounded reassures me. I talk a lot ; I can be drunk. If I appear cold from the start, I am actually a big mess”. He is one of the three musicians present since the beginning of SHOWYS. “Each new musician brings his note. There are sometimes disagreements, but that is what builds the group as it is today”. The decisive professional meeting is the one with Olivier Rousseau. “A talented pianist who brought me far beyond music; a great personality.”

Dynamism is not a question of age for him. “My 82-year-old mother is still in the projects. At the moment, she is making handbags with jeans that she salvages, a project of a 20-year-old hippie; she makes me laugh. With my sisters, we owe him a lot in terms of creativity. My father is on another register, more rigid, but benevolent… I shared the bugle with him. Today he is very close with my son Enzo; I enjoy watching them”.