2018 is right around the corner and that means that many local bands will start planning (hopefully you already started doing that) to tour in the New Year. So here are some tips for first timers that are craving that touring life!
1. Create a Tour Itinerary
Plan your tour with time. Make a Tour Itinerary, it will help you out when you are on the move. If you don’t know what a Tour Itinerary is, It’s not just a list of the dates you are playing. It will also include everything you need to know on a day to day basis. Basic things to put on there would be the venue name, address, email and contact information of the booking agent of that specific venue. If you have interviews scheduled those should be on there too. Also don’t forget to include complete information of everyone involved in the tour ie. Important phone numbers, email, address, band members names, management information, driver info.
2. Plan Ahead
DO NOT! wake up each day and try to google map your journey on the fly. Know how long each trip will be from show to show. By doing this ahead of time, it will help you get an idea of your gas funds and will help you plan activities (if any) while on the road.
3. Know Your Budget
Your first your is not about getting rich, sorry to burst that bubble. Before you hit the road, run the numbers. Factor guarantees, so you know what you are earning.Estimate gas costs, food budget for each day. It is also encouraged to have a little extra saved up in case of emergencies. You never know if you run into car problems like flat tires, dead battery, theft etc. Also cut the middle man when it comes to money. Know what you are getting. DO NOT depend on your manager to do deals from across the country. You should know what you are getting before you enter that venue.
4. Look After Yourself
A healthy mind and body will keep you at peak performance every night. Touring life is draining and the after effects are much drastic. Tour lends itself to the fast food life, heavy drinking, late night parties and driving for hours! Do your best to eat well, sleep well, and move around when you can.
5. Network and Explore the new stop.
Meet new people. Don’t finish performing and leave the venue. Stay, talk to people, try to sell your merch, connect with the booking agent there and sell the idea of coming back next year. Touring is meant to introduce you to new places, new faces and create memories. Enjoy it!