In this Preshow Rituals segment, the hard rock band, Coastlands, reveals what they do before taking the stage. You can check out the story, after the break.
Rituals are everything. From waking up and having that first cup of coffee or tea to watching your favorite show at night or listening to a white noise machine in order to fall asleep.
They define us and at the same time set us apart from one another. Creating art is a ritual in the same way that meditation is ritual, perhaps they are the same thing.
We need these constants in our life to help make sense of all the things in our life that utterly do not make sense. Rituals on tour will always be your saving grace. I cannot stress enough the importance of finding time for yourself to ensure you have a level state of mind. If you are better on a personal level, you will be better in a group setting.
When it comes to performing on stage, a ritual is an essential component that cannot be ignored. I’ve seen a wide variety of rituals from my years touring and performing. Some people like to sit alone, others in a group with a beer in hand. For Coastlands, our rituals have changed and developed over the years. We’ve learned it’s necessary to carve out time before a show to get in a good headspace in order to be fully present and perform at our highest level, night after night.
For me, after we unload our gear I like to leave the venue, put my phone on “do not disturb” and attempt to get slightly lost. My goal is to absorb the sights and especially the sounds of each city. I’ll usually grab a drink or a snack, walk for an hour or two, and then find a good place to sit and observe the pulse of this new space. This helps me clear my head and shrug off any anxieties from the day. Once back at the venue, closer to show time, I begin the second half of my ritual, Stretching. I’m 6′ 4″ and have constant issues with tight muscles and a generally achy body. Stretching helps align my body with the state of mind I’ve entered from exploring a new space/city. If my body is tight, my playing is rigid and it adversely affects how I feel about my performance as a whole. If I’m loose and centered, it’s going to be a great show, despite any hiccups or perceived mistakes.