Tour Essentials: Stuff you should bring when you go on tour

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by xCameronx, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. xCameronx

    xCameronx Member

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    I didn't know where else to post this so I'm posting it here. I'm going on my first real tour in about a week and I was wondering what I should bring on tour. I'm talking about stuff like Duct tape, extra cables, strings, tools, etc. I think I have all I need to survive all the shows but I was wondering what you think I should bring on tour.
     
  2. jazzfromhell

    jazzfromhell Member

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    Depends on where youre going. If youre touring cities with decent music stores you can always pick up stuff along the way, but rule no 1 is always bring a backup to everything you use. In some cases double backup.

    A POD or something like that can be a lifesaver if you cant bring a 2nd amp.
    Of course bring all the tools, strings, picks you need.
     
  3. willyboy

    willyboy Member

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    Bring backup for virtually everything gear wise including guitar, amp, extra cables, tubes if you play a tube amp, fuses, strings, picks and tools for fixing stuff including soldering iron, screw drivers, etc. In the 5 year period that I was on tour doing mostly 6 nights a week, I had to fix almost every piece of gear I had at one point or another, and it was not uncommon for something to go wrong in the middle of a set. When you tour, not playing or cutting the night short is not an option. Prepare yourself for anything and everything and make sure you don't have to depend on someone else fixing your stuff or needing to be near a music store or other for supplies. Being as self sufficient as possible (unless you have a tech on tour with you) and being prepared for the worst case scenario means you can spend your energy and focus on creating music, moments and putting on a show rather than stressing over whether your gear holds out.
     
  4. Voodoo Blues

    Voodoo Blues Member

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  5. Class5

    Class5 Member

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    Take a pair of flip flops and wear them while showering so you don't catch tinea from cheap motel bathrooms.

    (Im not kidding)
     
  6. xCameronx

    xCameronx Member

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    Check
     
  7. xCameronx

    xCameronx Member

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    Didn't think of tubes and fuses. Thank you.
     
  8. Wootie

    Wootie Member

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  9. arem

    arem Member

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    I posted this in a similar thread last year:

    I haven't toured in 15 years, so a lot has changed, we didn't have the internet, cell phones, or GPS navigation which would have made things about a million times easier. Still, these things are probably still true.

    - I never liked using a credit card for gas, too easy to run it up with other BS. Use gig money for gas and save the card for a potential emergency.
    - Check your equipment really well before you leave, replace anything even slightly worn out, and buy two of anything critical.
    - If you can, do a practice load in of your van before you leave so you can find the most efficient way to get everything in there. Once you have it figured out, do it the same way every time, make a chart if you need to. This way you also know if something is missing after a gig.
    - Make a complete tour book prior to leaving and get a copy to all band members/homeslices. The tour book should have contact numbers of all everyone on the tour, contacts back home, dates, venue names and contact numbers for all shows.
    - Make sure everyone helps load in/out every gig. Slackers always cause bad vibes.
    - Bring: Aspirin, Rolaids, Condoms, Alka Seltzer, Earplugs (for in the van, not just onstage), cheap Sunglasses, iPod/music player, and books to read.
    - Leave: Anything you would be bummed about losing, expensive sunglasses/watches, pets, and your relationship problems. No one wants to hear you fight with your GF over the phone multiple times a day.
    - Bring a frisbee or a soccer/basketball. There is a lot of waiting around to do, these are a good way to kill time.
    - Get away from your bandmates when you need to. They are going to get on your nerves no matter what. Give yourself some breathing room when they do.
    - Don't eat ****ty food too often. It will affect you more than you think.
    - Unless you are have REALLY secure parking, make sure someone sleeps in the van with the equipment. Rotate this responsibility.
    - Have a as much fun as you can. People envy you doing what you are doing, enjoy it to the fullest.
     
  10. Waxhead

    Waxhead Member

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    at least 5 groupies :p
     
  11. circusinthesky

    circusinthesky Member

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    We used to put the first layer of amps, drums, cabs, etc down, then outline it with tape on the floor. It goes back in the same spot every time.
     
  12. WhoJamFan

    WhoJamFan Supporting Member

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    Immodium and Mylanta/Pepto Bismol/Antacid. After eating crappy food and being stuck in a van, your bowels will turn into mush and you will need the Immodium to turn off the faucet, and the others for sour stomach. Beano and/or Gas-x pills can help keep you all from killing each other! You will have tons of downtime-bring books and other things to do. Try to eat at lest 1 healthy meal a day, there is a Subway in almost every truckstop and many gas stations.
     
  13. WhoJamFan

    WhoJamFan Supporting Member

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    Oh, and check IDs, be an awful shame to find out you just got with the local Sheriffs 16 year old daughter!
     
  14. kevingcp

    kevingcp Member

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    We found it cheaper to buy food before hand that was non perishable, canned food was our friend. We also brought a camping stove and cooked meals instead of eating out, it was a lot cheaper that way.

    Mind you, we were all 19 and 20 years old touring in a 1983 RV and none of the appliances worked, so we were eating mac n cheese, pasta, and burgers a lot.
     
  15. xCameronx

    xCameronx Member

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    This was extremely helpful. I noticed that I made some mistakes that you mentioned on one of the weekenders we did once, I lost an awesome Metallica shirt thats somewhere in Florida. And I'll bring earplugs incase everyone in the van starts to have an American Pie singalong.
     
  16. Lolaviola

    Lolaviola Supporting Member

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    "...Awesome Metallica shirt," heh heh heh
    I suggest to take along Airbourn tablets, a mini flashlight, and a pocket handkerchief.
     
  17. rickenbackerkid

    rickenbackerkid Member

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    Spare - Picks, fuses, tubes, leads, strings, essential pedals, a POD (even a nasty old one) incase your amp goes down.
    Pack - basic tool kit, lots of socks and underwear (laundry is hard to get done some times) first aid kit. Keep a desperation money stash hidden away and only use it if you truly have to.

    Stay in shape - get some exercise on drive days. What ever you do, get some healthy food in to you. Sick on tour is awful, and you need to be on top of your game. For the same reason, no drugs, minimal alcohol.
     
  18. xCameronx

    xCameronx Member

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    Oh yes a flashlight! I couldn't tell how many times I had to use my phone as a flashlight to see what ohm the cabs we were using were. Thanks.
     
  19. S. S. Bender

    S. S. Bender Member

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    So very true!

    As silly as this sounds, hand sanitzer, plus vitamins C & D can both go a long way toward keeping you healthy on the road. (And at home too)

    I used to get 2 or 3 colds and/or the flu per year before I retrained myself to never touch my eyes, nose, or mouth with my bare unsanitized hands. If you have to scratch or touch those areas, and have no tissue or hand sanitizer available, lift your shirt or coat at the neck line, and use the interior side of the fabric as an insulator. It might look a little weird, but it's better than giving cold and flu germs a super-highway free-ride into your body.

    Taking vitamins C & D religiously will give you an extra layer of protection.

    It's worked for me. I haven't been sick in years.
     
  20. JxD

    JxD Member

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    Books saved my life touring across Canada. After a 21 hour drive, people get sort of talked out, so they're a nice time-kill. Also, if it's an option, pita places are awesome to eat at. They will stuff a pound of vegetables into a wrap. I generally felt more comfortable eating that than Subway, which is consistently mediocre. I would also suggest bringing something dark to wrap around your face to make sleeping easier. I used speaker cloth that I had left over from putting in a cabinet at last minute (probably should have used grill cloth, but I couldn't wait for it). My band slept in Walmart parking lots overnight (which is free and you get to stay with the van, so no break-ins), which are lit-up like it's daytime, so that kind of thing helped.

    As far as bringing back-ups (amps, guitars, pedals, etc.) goes, I don't know if I can get behind that. I spent a lot of time worrying that my gear might get stolen and I only brought the bare minimum. You might be better off contacting some of the other bands you'll be playing with ahead of time and asking if you might use their gear if something were to go wrong. You might make a lot more friends that way too, which is one of the reasons why touring is great.
     

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