In this Tour Tips segment, the dark pop duo, MXMS, recommends their tips for being on tour. You can check out their advice, after the break.
1. FOOD. The expense no one thinks about. If you get a rice cooker, you can make not only rice but all kinds of different variations of vegetables and even meat if you so desire. You can plug the unit into a medium to large size inverter in your vehicle and if you don’t have A/C power any flying J or truck stop will have a lounge area that you can plug it in to. This will enable you to eat for like $0.95 a meal. This is far from the $12 you will spend at Denny’s. It’s boring though. Also, you can make wraps before you leave for tour and put them in foil and put them in an ice chest. You can save hundreds and hundreds this way because feeding a band of 5 is instantly $60. EACH MEAL.
2. HOTEL TRICKS. How to get 5 people in one double queen room. First of all, you reserve the room for 1 person. You ask to have your room near the back door since you have “so much luggage”. Then you sneak your band in said back door. One of these band members has a twin inflatable mattress. You will need to reconfigure the room to fit the mattress and make sure that it doesn’t block access to the shower. Also, you should only use Choice Hotels mainly because they have the fastest program for earning free rooms. DO NOT stay at Motel 6’s. Even though they are remodeling physically a lot of the units, the company has a history of cooperating with I.C.E. Nazis so we avoid them at all costs.
3. TOURING IN A CAR. So you have a small band footprint and you don’t have any fly dates? LOSE YOUR CASES. The flight cases take up the most room. If you de-case everything except for guitars (unless the guitars are super cheap) you will have that ability to hide and stick things in crevices. You can get a luggage vinyl bag that will strap to the top of your car WITHOUT a luggage rack on Amazon for like $45. You can potentially use this luggage bag and the trunk and carry up to 4 people semi-comfy in a PRIUS or even smaller! This allows you to maintain that 40+ MPG while the band you are touring with is spending $300 a day in gas. Drums, however, are a nightmare. They take up all of the room. Remember ANY CAR can pull a trailer. Even a Prius. You can get the small U-Haul trailer for literally any car even a Prius C.
4. STAY ON THE SAME AIRLINE. Do not save $23 and fly on Southwest. YOU NEED THE MILES AND THE STATUS. Because when you get bigger you will be constantly flying with heavy and oversize pieces and you will have status to get several (up to three) of these items for free. REMEMBER YOU MAY TAKE ANY INSTRUMENT ON A PLANE AS A CARRY ON. This includes Bass Guitars. It’s an FAA federal law. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise. Pick either United, American or Delta and DO NOT ever fly on a different airline; even if it means flying backwards.
5. Sleep. You have to budget for this. Sleeping is how you don’t get in fights, and how you don’t lose your voice. It doesn’t hurt your voice every night to sing. Especially if you warm up. But if you are only getting 3-5 hours of sleep at night you are going to be garbage in about 4 shows. Staying at Billy the bartender’s studio apartment with cat piss on the ground doesn’t work. Budget for hotels; or stay with friends you know in advance has room. Make sure you have a blow-up mattress or two on the road with you that you can make beds out of when you are dealing with floor space.
There’s so much more but we have to get back to work now :)
J and A
me and my shadow