For a long time, it’s felt like we could be doing more to fuse the worlds of music and gaming, especially with the magic that we’ve seen made in the past when our worlds collided. Australia’s premier esports organisation, ORDER, have recognised that in spades, appointing musician Billy Davis as one of Australia’s first-ever individuals trusted with the position of Creative Ambassador for gaming. While you may know him for his music (and collaborations with Brockhampton, Amy Shark, and more), Davis has set off on a mission to shake up the scene, dispelling preconceived notions about the industry to make way for innovation. We hit the man himself up to get the skinny on where he’s coming from.
How did you get started in gaming?
My uncle was an avid gamer and pre much was my father figure growing up. He got me into first person shooter games and other assortments at quite a young age.
ORDER are doing some really exciting things in this space. What made you want to sign on with them?
To be honest, the fact that everything ORDER touched seemed to be excellent and their approach was actually affecting culture not just approaching everything like everyone else, but wanting to be a part of culture and doing something different.
They have always visualised an organisation that is more than a collection of esports teams, and from the first time we chatted, I could see where they wanted to go and wanted to be part of that. Now I’m here, I get a really cool opportunity to influence and add to that direction.
You have this career in music, but you also remain a gamer. Where do you see the biggest opportunities for music and gaming to come together?
In every space, it’s all about having fun and vibing. The social aspect of it is so important from meeting different people, organising events etc. And gaming is the new kid on the entertainment block, and reminds me so much of music – people play, watch, hang. We’ve already seen artists being put virtually in games, and we’ll continue to see artists and gamers mix their creativity to create some super cool content a long way into the future.
The art of the videogame soundtrack is very serious (with the soundtrack for Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater as the gold standard). Where have you seen this done really well?
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, Halo soundtrack is iconic.
You’ve been sharing your views on dispelling myths around gaming. Where do you see those misconceptions as being most prevalent?
That gaming is only ‘boys’ or only people who want to sit in their basement and play all day. Gaming is just like sport, just like fashion, just like music. Yes there is the professional side but gamers and content creators are also cool – gaming is cool! In a world gone mad, it’s an escape and something which people can use to simply just have fun and escape reality and hang with friends or meet new people. It’s inclusive, for everyone really.
There’s this awesome career path available to gamers now in terms of streaming and competing. What would your advice be to someone who wants to pursue gaming professionally?
Approach it just like a sport or an instrument. Times have changed and there are now opportunities to live off gaming now.
What’s your view on esports having a place at the Olympics?
100% or even having its own form of Olympics. I think there is a talent to it and a skill to it and it would be amazing and unique for people to watch.
What would you like to see change in gaming by this time next year?
Specifically, I would love to see it become more and more part of everyday culture in Oceania like music, fashion, or sport, just one of the many passions that people are into.
You can follow Billy Davis here.