In this Tour Tips segment, Sam Lockwood of the alternative band, The Jezabels, gives you their tips for being on tour. You can check out the feature, after the break.
Tour Tips 101 with Sam from The Jezabels
1. Stay Fresh
We’ve toured a lot over the past few years and the one thing that I must implore you to do is to stay fresh. Some people have a strong constitution when it comes to cigarettes/alcohol/other bad things. I’m sorry to say though even the strongest fall in then end. It’s difficult to maintain some semblance of a healthy diet. But you MUST. There are ways and means. I recommend having at least one decent meal a day. And drink some water. And do some sort of exercise.
2. Be Patient With Others
After a couple of months being in a van with the same group of people, it can become passive aggressive central. This is because I am a very impatient man. I’ve learnt over the years to just take a second, have a few deep breaths and look out the window and contemplate about why you’re so peeved over something so trivial. You tend to then see how silly you’re being, and it also puts you in the right mood to talk to your fellow tour companion about what they’re doing that is so annoying you. Everyone is then happy, and the tour continues in respectful bliss.
3. See The Cities You’re Playing In
There’s no better way to restart the tour-brain than to take a walk and actually look around the city that you’re playing in. A typical tour is drive, load in, sound check, dinner, show, load out, sleep, drive, load in, etc. If you have a few hours to spare, which is rare admittedly, go for a walk into town and try and see at least one interesting thing that that city has to offer. For instance, I always check out the Eisbach (Canal) in Munich where the locals go surfing. It’s nice to just sit there and relax for a moment.
4. Plan Your Clothes Washing Schedule
You start the tour with a plethora of clothing options. Cut to two weeks in and you’re wearing the same socks and underwear over and over again and your shirts and pants are covered in sauce stains. You look like a nightmare. You had an opportunity a few days prior to wash your clothes, but you chose instead to play mini golf with your sound guy. Now the next chance you’ll get to do a load of washing is in another two weeks. That is a fail.
5. Get To Know Bands You’re Playing With
Whether you’re supporting them or they’re supporting you, get to know your fellow musicians. They’re always on the same page as you and you’ll find you can make lasting friendships around the country and the world. I think that this is the best part of the job. You meet so many great people. Even bar staff. It’s your industry and everyone is working together to put a decent job on. Respect your elders and the venues you’re playing in. It’s impossible to quantify how helpful it is to your career to be a decent person wherever you go.
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