In this Tour Tips segment, the indie pop artist, James Droll, gives you his tips for being on tour. You can check out the feature, after the break.
1. Towels – Just like “Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy” says, towels are so freaking useful. You bring one towel on tour (hopefully more than just one) and all of sudden you have a blanket, a scarf, a pillow, a sweat rag, a picnic blanket, bubble wrap for your valuables, and something to dry you from the shower you probably won’t take!
2. Sunglasses – Driving without sunglasses for 8 hours worth of sunlight is some kind of torture. Beyond the practical use of sunglasses, they can also be used as a tool of deception. Are you hungover? Sunglasses! Are you asleep at the merch table? Sunglasses! Does eye contact give you social anxiety? Sunglasses!
3. Where’s your WiFi? – If you’re as broke as ‘Blockbuster’ like I am then you’re not staying anywhere other than your van and huddling with your bandmates for warmth. Document what establishments have free WiFi and keep it on 24 hours (i.e. McDonald’s and Panera Bread).
4. Chinese Buffets – This one is super obvious. It’s cheap, it fills you up, and you get to feel like you actually have the money to eat at restaurants.
5. The Almighty Sound Guy – This is arguably the most important tip (other than towels). Always be nice to the sound people, always. Unless you have the money to bring your own guy with, you are at the mercy of the venue’s hired engineer. Find ways to kiss their ass without being too obvious (i.e. one of my old bands would play a ‘Foo Fighters’ cover for soundcheck). All kidding aside when you’re touring, just be courteous to the staff of every venue you play regardless of the size or success of the show.