Louis De Meester was born on 18 October 1904 in a Francophone, liberal family in Roeselare. From a young age he took lessons in violin and piano, as well as solfège, although he would never receive a traditional musical education. From 1923, the composer started to earn his living by playing in cafés. He also played music for silent films and for balls and parties; this would form the basis of his later interest in functional music and music for film, plays and ballet.