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How to Stay Organized While on Tour

With summer now in full swing, musicians are hitting the road for weeks of back-to-back shows.  Blues Rock duo 7Horse is no stranger to the road, having toured extensively over the past few years, and currently on a national tour to promote their new album, Songs for a Voodoo Wedding.  In between shows, the band took a little time to count down the top five ways they stay organized on the road…

By Phil Leavitt and Joie Calio of 7Horse

Touring. Is. Hard.  Despite what your friends and family think, life on the road is a challenge even for those of us who have been at it for quite some time.  You need to stay organized—you’re running a business out there.  We’re counting down our top five tips for keeping things in order out on the lonesome highway.

5. Get a competent tour manager.

It could be a seasoned pro who lives his/her life on the road, or it could be a buddy who has some business sense.  Either way, you need someone who isn’t in the band to do some driving, advance the gigs (yes, you need to make contact with the club in advance to know when you’re supposed to arrive for load-in and sound check, and to find out if they are actually going to pay you).  And if they are indeed paying you, you need someone to collect the money.  It’s called Settlement.  Unless you’re carrying a firearm and are prepared to use it, you might want someone to act as your representative.  It adds an air of professionalism to your little traveling circus.

4. Use “Bill Pay.”

Your life is going to go haywire unless you set up your monthly bills through your bank’s bill pay.  Line it all up before you leave and then you don’t have to worry about the electricity getting shut off while you’re gone.  When you get home there’s a chance the food in the fridge will still be good and your cable will work.  You’re going to want to sit on the couch and watch TV when you get back, and not speak to another living soul for at least 48 hours.

3. Check your Daily Trend reports in your TuneCore account religiously.

Your team wants sales numbers.  This is where you find them.  When you pass this info to your booking agent, inflate the numbers by 10-20%.  Don’t act so indignant—this is the music business.  EVERYONE lies.  You should too.

2. Use the Square (or other credit card reader) at the merch table.

Drunk people will buy more merch if they can charge it.  Upsell them.  Having a hot merch girl helps.

1. Alphabetize your underwear.

It will help you stay fresh!

Got your own ideas about how to stay organized on the road?  Share them below in the comments!

  • bodytech

    Um, yeah…#1 is kind of killing the whole thing for me right there…who has the money to pay a tour manager these days?