road trip!!


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01-16-2007, 07:13 PM
ok so, my band is curently recording an ep/full album and we are looking to tour a bit around the local area for about 2 weeks to a month once we finish recording and take a brake for a week or two. so i have a few questions for going on the road.
#1. the PA, so most bars have a pa but what if they don't? is it worth bringing a pa with you and if so, how big should it be?
#2. transportation, we are thinking of using my truck but i'm wondering if it has enough room and if it is a good idea to put gear in the truck bed? it's a new tacoma 4 door and we have a 3 member band (drums, guitar, bass) and i am worried about things gettign damaged in the back. so should we just rent a van or is it not worth it?
#3. do you guys have any advice for going on the road? we are planning a small trip now and then in the summer we will go for a while. so what are some good tips for guys that only played local gigs a few times a month?
thanks alot for any anwers we want this to go well.

01-16-2007, 07:35 PM
Most bars I have played at DON'T have their own PA and require bands to bring their own. I know we use a Mackie 808M as a power amp along with another 1,000W power amp and that goes to a Yamaha 16 channel mixer. The drums have a Behringer mixer which I hate and we just run 2 xlr cables out of that. We then have 2 JBL speakers and POS monitors. This usally holds a 200-400 person room. If you can, check out the room you will be playing in and see what other bands use there. There are some places where you wil want to use less equipment. Also make sure you have more than enough cables, mics, duct tape, stands, etc.

I would take 2 trucks. You should be able to fit plenty in the Tacoma.. stuff is going to get damanged at some point on the road.. that just happens. Unless you want to get real serious and buy cases for everything. I would have the drummer at least put his kit in his own vehicle. If you are going on a long road trip where you will be out of town for days... you could get a trailer. As far as renting a van, I think you have to be 25 to rent from a rental car company. Check with your family first.

The biggest question you need to ask yourself before going on a "tour" is .. are you ready for a tour? This answer will depend on this question:

Have you out grown your local area? It usually works in these steps:

Local- Your city, a few surrounding cities

Regional- Depending on how big your state is.. 2-3 states. I'm from Maryland and our neighbour states are close.. so I consider the Mid-Atlantic my region (Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Virginia)

National- The U.S. (Start with 2 time zones or major cities)

International- Get your passport

I remember someone in the music publicity business saying that if you don't return to a place you gig within 2 months, you have wasted your time. So keep that in mind. Make sure you bring some stuff to sell and add people on myspace before you play there.

I was once in a band where one of the band members had a connection to someone who was in another band and booked gigs out of state. He wanted us to play at a rock show at a church in Pennslyvania and we had nothing recorded and no merchandise to sell. They seemed to want to play just to get "exposure" and play out of state. I told them that was stupid.

Why the hell would I want to drive 5 hours to play for 30 minutes and have nothing to promote? People at those shows usually won't remember your name unless you are selling mad merchandise and put on a great show. Luckily that show got cancelled, so I didn't have to argue with them anymore.

Also make sure you each agree on how you are going to pay for gas, food, hotels, etc. We once had a guy in our band who was always broke and never had any money for anything. Why would I take this person with me on tour?

Also be sure you make listings of music stores near the cities you are traveling. You never know when you might forget something or need to buy something in emergency.

01-16-2007, 08:03 PM
wow great thanks alot. can i get the info on what monitors and stuff you use in a bit more detail?

01-16-2007, 08:42 PM
I don't know all the specs and I hate the monitors. All I know is they have 15" speakers in them. If you are semi-strapped on funds, check out music ads in the paper. Often I see people selling their entire rigs because they get new stuff, if it was good enough for their band.. it's probably good enough for yours. If you have rich parents (which i'm assuming you considering you are driving a new tacoma) then go to the music shop and the guys there will hook you up. You can usually ask them to knock the price down a few hundred if you buy the entire rig at once.

01-16-2007, 08:50 PM
thanks man, i'll definantaly do that and research some stuff before i go looking for it. that 808m looks pretty good too. and my parents aren't that rich, it's my grandparents lol.