In all of our other features, we highlight bands/artists; now we want to take you into the world of the people who work for a band on tour, their crew. For this feature, we teamed up with photographer and videographer, Mike Wilson. You can find out more about Mike and advice he has for people interested in hitting the road (his “Trick of the Trade”), after the break.
Current – Mayday Parade
Previous – Cartel, Neck Deep
What positions have you held (i.e. Tour Manager, Front of House, etc.)?
Current – Photographer/videographer
Previous – Photographer, Tour Manager and Merch (Cartel); Merch (Neck Deep)
Your first touring gig:
Who did you work for?
My first touring gig was with Cartel. We were on the Sticks and Stones 10 year (round 2) tour with New Found Glory and State Champs. It was a great run and I met some great people on the road.
How did you get the gig?
I met the band during their very first tour into Florida back in 2004 before they signed to Milita Group. I remained in contact with them through the years, shooting them every time they came to Florida. One day the position opened up to do merch for them so I jumped at the opportunity!
What was (is your continued) motivation for wanting to start working for tour bands?
I enjoy being able to work with bands on the road and document their travels. As of late, I’ve been assisting with social media efforts and really enjoy that element as well. Being able to document a band’s travels around the world and sharing it with fans is really exciting.
While growing up were you involved in your local music scene? If so, how did you get involved?
I was! I grew up going to locals shows and enjoying seeing a lot of artists come through my hometown. I also put on some locals shows at a law firm that was owned by my friend’s dad.
If you could recommend one piece of advice (“trick of the trade”) to current or aspiring crew members, what would it be?
From a photographer’s point of you, don’t give up on your dream. It takes a lot of work and patience to find a full touring gig. If you prove yourself and work hard in your local scene the work will come. Don’t be afraid to talk to other photographers that come through your area or email them for advice.
(photo credit: Lupe Bustos)