I'd Rather You Marry Rich Old Men On Their Dying Breaths
I have had 19 to 20 years of living with my mother I dont even know where to start. I'm twenty two this year and an only child. It is like opening a deep festering wound. It took me awhile before I had decided I should post this. The topics branch out too, so I will just reveal everything related to this title only. Since she doesn't regret anything she has done and even think she's always right and everyone is lower than her, I shan't be afraid to reveal.
"Baby girl, your mother isnt happy in her marriage. We don't love each other anymore. I want to divorce him, what do you think? If we manage to divorce, I will be taking you with me. We can start a new life abroad with the money and you will be happy. You want to go overseas and study? Your father is a cruel person and you probably won't survive even a day under his roof." My mother said this to four year old me.
At that time I couldn't think about anything other than bawling my eyes out crying asking my mother why the love was gone, I didn't see my father being cold towards her, and definitely not towards me. I kept asking her while in tears why she wanted to divorce and she said she flat out said she wanted to go abroad taking me with her as she felt that there's no chemistry left between them. I told her that my father was good to us and that she shouldn't just simply leave. And told her I love my father and didnt want to leave him.
Years later, she blamed me for her marriage, saying I was the one keeping her in this marriage and that I'm a heartless person to trap her in and I made it even worse by crying loudly when I was a baby, didn't play my violin well to impress him whenever he's at home, did not get good grades consistently and that according to my mother, my father didnt like it and he began to come home really late.
Ever since I started nursery class at four years' old, my mother has been calling me "Little University student" in Chinese. At that time I felt happy as I thought she wants me to study hard and get a degree.
A year passed and she began looking for violin teachers for me. She found one, an old man who has a singer for a wife and his son is a viola part in an orchestra. The old man was friendly and patient at teaching, his wife offered me sweets every week we go to their condominium. His son usually shuts himself in his soundproofed room to practise.
That's when my almost daily canings and beatings started. If I played a couple sour notes she would storm into my room holding the cane and told me to be very in tune and in perfect rhythm. I only had a couple lessons before she did that. Sometimes I felt really fearful of her and hid under the table in my room. The table didn't give any solace either as she would swiftly swat the cane under the table around to get me. Once I couldn't take the pain anymore, I relented, crawled out and did what she wanted me to do.
When I was about seven, I wanted to call the police against her but she took the receiver from me and told me if I call to report against her, I would be considered unfilial and asked me who would report on their parents, anyone who calls the police on their parents are bad kids. She then took the phone away.
At eight years old, I wanted to jump off from my 20th story apartment building but stopped myself at the ledge, telling myself that dying won't solve anything and that I should try to live for myself and there will always be a better day tomorrow.
As for studies, 1 mark away from 100 when I was in kindergarten she would be extremely upset and she would ask me whether I was retarded/idiot and she would compare me to all of my cousins saying I am a shitty daughter who embarrasses her in front of her maternal family due to my grades. Why can't I be like them in terms of studies, why I can't be obedient and listen to her every instruction and do what she says.
Every school day I have to go straight home and if I was late for about 10 mins or so, she would question me where I had went and caned me telling me not to play outside. Told me she herself could take me to shopping so I don't have to waste time.
Of course, in other aspects we compare and "compete" too in my mother's eyes. My mother has 3 siblings, 1 elder sister, 1 older brother and 1 little sister, all divorced and only have one child each. Whenever she hears or asks her siblings about their child and they tell her they aren't doing well, she would gloat at home laughing at her siblings commenting that they aren't as capable as her. When she hears the progresses on their musical instruments improve or asks me about my progress and she can't deliver, she would have a vicious look that I "will get it when we reach home" all the way home and told me to practise more or else she will lose face in front of her siblings and family.
Even vacation trips were compared too. At the age of nine, due to me topping my class in two subjects out of four in school, I simply wanted to go to Disneyland, which Disneyland didn't matter, so my parents bought tickets to Hong Kong (we love Cantonese and Macau food too) and even booked the resort hotel in Disneyland. After coming back from the trip, she boasted to the family about it when they had a gathering again.
Her little sister, I will label her Little Aunt, LA in short, who was at that time well to do due to her husband (she doesn't work just like my mother), looked pissed and jealous and the very next day LA and her daughter announced over the phone that they were going to the Disneyland in Japan and that they had already visited USA's Disneyland.
After hearing that news, my mother cursed that LA went to a further Disneyland to spite her and in that I need to practise more before they come back to shoot it back right at them proving they wasted time on their Disneyland trip. Sometimes a family gathering from the maternal side feels like a palace harem meeting.
Other than canings at home, I was bullied since I was seven till I graduated from my GCE O'levels because of my eczema condition. My skin on my entire body was constantly broken, leaking pus and blood and the sultry weather didnt help either.
Turns out that I had alot of allergens in my body causing it to react and raised my body heat temperature. And constipation. My mother thought it would be a good solution to add a small amount of what I was allergic to into my food. She believed my body should be pushed to the limit. I did not know about this after years later my father told me that she told him and I was just in shock. I have always thought my mother, who cooked all meals for me since young would look at the ingredients instead of feeding me stuff that could cause a severe reaction.
My mother would often compare my body curves with my cousins. LA's daughter, I will label her as little cousin as LC.
"Your LC's butt is so big that it is bursting at the seams, why is your buttocks still so flat?" then why dont you take LC as your daughter then?
"Your rashes are caused by your unfilial piety towards me, so if you want to recover, you should listen and obey me at all times."
"Your breasts are too small for rich men to notice, here, use my bust enhancing cream from one of my treatment sessions."
She pinched my breasts with both of her palms almost everyday making them extremely sore and painful, the creams do work for a certain period of time, after that, they will shrink to its original size.
"Rich men love girls with big breasts and huge butts. How are you going to attract them with your figure like that?"
My mother wanted to name me as LC's name but LC got born first. She blamed LA behind her back for giving birth to LC earlier so that she can take the name she wanted to name me, which LA was not aware about as they had not discussed that my mother wanted to reserve that name for me.
She would often purchase short dresses and skirts that were alittle revealing since I was about ten. When there were random dancing competitions for kids on the streets when we encountered them, she would tell me to go up there and dance. All the songs and dance moves I knew were Britney spears, Lady gaga, Ke$ha and Katy Perry's moves as that's all I was listening to at that time. She chuckled when I won first prizes even though my panties were showing to the crowd while dancing.
My mother wanted to play the violin too, so she brought a half sized violin with her along with my 1/16th violin. When she asked my first teacher (the old man) whether she can accompany me and learn the violin, he didn't seem to mind.
My first violin teacher often invited my mother and I to perform in various locations such as old folks'homes and hospices. If I didnt do well to her standards (perfectly in tune and rhythm), I will receive a death glare telling that I will "get it at home".
Soon after the son took notice of me when I was about nine and took me under his wing. My mother was not allowed to learn the violin with me as it was strictly one to one lessons, but allowed her to sit near me and watch. (It was also individual lessons with his father, but he was too nice not to reject my mother's request.)
Everytime we finished the violin lesson for the week, she would take me to airports and places where she thinks where rich people hang. Some guys would approach her and talk to her. While I usually stood behind her listening to what my mother and a guy who approached her. When they talked for too long or going to a topic that might put my father in a bad situation, I dragged my mother away by the arm. She would tell me the guys she talked to admired her and that they were interested in her. She did not forget to mention that they claimed to be more well off than my father and that she is sacrificing her life and wasting her time in this marriage.
She often said she was sought after and when she was young, a man who has a huge empire in Indonesia, which is near my birth country wanted her to be his wife but she rejected and married my father instead. Sometimes she mentioned she regretted marrying my father as he's not rich.
Fast forward to thirteen year old me, when I started my first year in Secondary school a.k.a. Junior high in US. My mother further "elaborated" what she meant by "Little University student". I hear these sentences on a daily basis other than demanding more monthly allowances from my father, whom I was isolated from by my mother throughout my childhood. She told me he was evil and cold hearted, I won't survive under his roof and all the extreme worst case scenarios she described to me making him seem like a monster.
"Go to university my daughter, you will land rich guys in there. You play the violin, an instrument of high class and rich people love them."
"Don't waste your time making useless friends in primary, secondary school and high school. You are superiors than others because not many people plays the violin."
"You see these kids playing Parchabel and Paganini at the age of five? Why can't you be like them? You are thirteen and you cant even play Czardas well."
"How are you going to get a rich guy and support old me? You need to be filial and support me when I'm old or you will go to the lowest level of hell, the 18th level for unfilial people. Unfilial people go to the worst hell. Do you want to go to the 18th level of hell and receive eternal torture?" (Shows me pictures of different levels of Chinese hell, eg. Level 1 Chamber of tongue ripping, 2nd level Chamber of Scissors, 3rd level Iron cycads, and many others, knifes, steaming, boiling oil, hill of ice, glowing hot copper columns, sinking in putrid water while holding a heavy stone on top of you in one level, hell fire, dismemberment, constantly getting pulverized and crushed by a stone mill, sawed in half constantly, etc.)
She also convinced me from young that everyone around me including my father except her are bad people who are out to get me and her and that I can't trust anyone except for her and I can only rely on her for everything to be safe. Police cannot be trusted and I was encouraged to lie to everyone except for her.
"You can lie to everyone in the world except for me. Even the police. I'm your mother. Mother is always right. We should stick together."
When I finally graduated my GCE O'levels at sixteen, I met a guy in Canada. My mother saw it as an opportunity to live abroad and convinced my father to give her extra money due to currency exchanges and took me to Canada to see the guy. I am not going to delve into the details unless you want them on another reddit post as it's another dark chapter in my life.
At the age of 17, I started high school. Broke up with the guy and I applied for a collegiate at high school in Southern Canada. She applied for an aesthetics diploma. Because of the extra cost, she asked my father for more money again. How does one even spend 3k in a month? And that's when she revealed that she has been saving part of her monthly allowances to her private account.
My jaw dropped. So...when I asked for a laptop to learn my schoolwork she said she's penniless. Totally not making sense at all. Not to mention she had secretly auctioned off almost all of my father's vintage coins and kept all the money to herself and told me if I told my father any word about this she would punish me for betraying her told me I would go to hell for doing so. She said God is looking down from the sky on us on everything we do. So if I betray her God will definitely know. Every quarrel between my parents, I always hear my mother using me as a means to getting more money.
"VH (my username) has more violin lessons now, you need to give me more so that we wont starve."
I only have 1 lesson per week.
She sometimes uses huge sums of money for her spa treatments and bust enhancing treatments
"Didn't I gave you 1k extra already?" My father sounding pissed.
"No we spent that already." She would pressure and press my father until he finally relents and gave her some money to shut her up.
Because of my grades, I managed to enroll into the city's best university. I picked the violin performance major and started classes in in the summer to get more credits. My mother graduated and started working as an esthetician. She began to tell me to mingle around with rich guys in university and loiter around where high class people and rich people hang. Didn't take her advice because I dont have time for that, also sounded like she wanted to whore me out. I couldn't stop her from saying, so these just went in one ear, out the other. As time passed and I didnt bring any rich guys home to introduce, she said something which I will vividly remember as she said these on a daily basis:
"If you can't land a rich guy to support me and you, I suggest you look for rich old men on their dying breaths, yes, make sure they are really old and frail, but must be filthy rich, seduce them to make them marry you, and then when they die you can get their fortune and pensions."
"Who needs love when you have a ton of money to make yourself happy? Love doesn't fill a stomach or pay bills. Only money can. When they die, we can go to other countries again."
"You suck at saving money and your bank account isnt secure enough, so I will have to safeguard it in my account."(My bank card was always with her until I terminated my account as it was stripped clean by my mother)
"Of course, you will get some too. I'm old and you will have to support me or else you are a heartless person who doesnt practise filial piety to her parents and shall go to the worst hell. You are supposed to take care of me."
"You still owe me the medical bills that were paid for your birth, I did not have anesthesia when I birthed you so you can imagine how painful that was. Hence you owed me since your birth, you are mine. "
Once I spent about a few thousands online that were stretched over multiple purchases that were essentials and furniture, she gave me a beating and told me I am killing her and she wants to kill herself as I had "stolen" her money when apparently every single cent she has was given by my father as she never worked. Yelling at me that if I give birth to my first born child she will take it and sell it to recoup her money. Thinking of nothing to rebut her from this insult, I asked her, what if it is a stillborn, she said
"Then good, your womb will rot along with the dead fetus in it."
Again, I can't argue with her or else she will raise her voice or even scream and yell to drown my voice so I just sighed. She kept asking and hitting me where is her money every single day. My accident compensation fees were gone to her and she wasn't happy. She said it was all for my own good when she took the cheque and put it in her bank.
Finally, I couldn't take it anymore at the age of 18 I was also dating a down to earth guy who is a realist, loves me very much and treats everyone the way he wanted to be treated (thankfully) whom in turn became my husband when he knew about my situation, he looked stunned, told me I need to get out of that, then a few days later he drove across the border with my now mother in law for me. I packed my passport, my essentials, everything I had owned and left with him. Before leaving for the last time, I wrote a note to her saying I will be traveling in Europe and that she does not have to worry about me before slipping my set of apartment keys under the door.
That day when she came back to an empty apartment which only consisted of only her possessions. According to my father's account, she called him during one of his classes (he is a science teacher) and was in hysteria, saying I was gone and stuff. He told her calmly that this was bound to happen and hung up.
As I was still in contact with her through LINE, she began to calling me repeatedly and writing messages telling me to pick up. Firstly she sounded sweet, then when I did not call her, she messaged angry messages and then threats. She kept calling until I couldn't use my phone without constantly minimizing the call interface as I didn't want to pick up and hear her voice for awhile, then I finally gave up and picked up. I showed the conversation to my husband and he decided to sit beside me while I facetime her, helping me to defend against her torrents of accusations. She said I was unfilial and that I will go to the deepest pits of Chinese hell. She even accused him that he influenced me to turn my back against her and tried convincing me to come back to her to Canada. She acted sweet and when my husband exposed her motives, she screamed like a lunatic trying to shut me and my husband up but it didnt deter my husband who saw through the bullshit.
Apparently, once I was gone, my father reduced her monthly allowance to 1.5k and she wanted me to be with her so that she wanted her old monthly allowance back. By that time I was done. Once she finished all of her insults, I hung up on the verge of tears in disbelief and my husband comforted me throughout these ordeals.
Till this day I rarely speak to my mother for fear she would actually come knocking on our front door to let her in and then making a place for herself in our house. Or even take our first child to sell.
Update: As I haven't talked to my mother for months, to check whether she is still doing alright in Canada, I called her afew days ago on LINE and she kept insisting to facetime me but I refused. She sounded sweet at first, but gradually made it a pity party by sobbing telling me I'm unfilial to leave her.
Knowing that she wanted 200k+ from my father to open a shop after I talked to my father, I asked her about it and she told me she hadn't been pestering my father about it. (She has been bugging my father for that amount as she claimed that he had owed her throughout all these years because of his investment in stocks, she didnt mention she did stocks that usually failed and that my father had to pay for her losses.) Upon knowing I was doing great with my husband, she in turn told me to open a shop. I told her I dont know how to operate one or even have the capital for it but she kept insisting that I should.
As I had thinning eyebrows these few months due to stress (still recovering back thankfully), I told her about it and she told me that's because I left her alone in Canada showing that I'm unfilial and God is punishing me with my brows and that I should return to her side in order for my face to be restored. She told me I am already one foot into the 18th level of hell when I ran away from home, so I should atone for it by coming back to her or let her have access to me.
submitted by VestaHearth
15 Essentials for Going on Tour: What I learned from 100 shows on the road (By a Musician, for the Musician)
In 2019 I played 100 shows on the road as a freelance bass player. It was not my first tour by any means, but it was the first year with that much volume of touring, which required me to build routine and follow through on healthy habits on the road. This is what I learned: 100 Shows On The Road
Organize your Tour like a Traveling Business
Designate a Tour Manager
The Tour Manager
, or TM, is the director of all of the artist’s business and professional activity. Tour Manager responsibilities include answering the phone, reading contracts, recording income and expenses, logging mileage, resolving crisis on the road, and making sure the band shows up on time. Tour Managers will act as the liaison between the band and all other parties involved in the tour, such as the venue production & hospitality, the Booking Agent, and the Artist Manager.
Google Drive is your new best friend
Personally, I recommend that your Tour Manager operate a Google Drive Account that everyone in the band can access. Google Drive is a widely accepted and cost-effective option for cloud storage that can be immediately accessed by band members and management alike. Any .PDF, .CSV, or .Excel file can be imported and viewed on any phone or computer. I recommend using a G Drive account for things like Day Of Show Itineraries
, Driving Schedules
, and General Show Data
. Additionally, your booking agent (if you have one
) will provide the TM with their spreadsheet for booking and routing.
Collect & Consolidate Show Data
Your TM or Manager should be up keeping a Google Sheet to reflect your business expenses and incomes on the road. The example below is hypothetical, but the more data you are able to collect, the easier it will be to see your progress and (hopefully) growth as a band and as a business. Hypothetical Show Data Example
In the Show Data example above, I have collected data from each date on the tour and included information about the venue, the city, the performance fee & type of Deal, the # of Tickets Sold and the ticket price, as well as general notes. When collecting your own Show Data, you could also keep track of things such as:
- Where you are sleeping that night + Contact Info
- Expected attendance vs Actual Attendance
- Notes about the Performance
- Notes about the Hospitality
- Merchandise Sales
- All other Band Expenses
Create a Driving Schedule:
Driving schedules are not essential, as every band has their preferred driving routines, but creating a driving schedule allows everyone knows how far away the next venue is (and will keep someone sober after the show…
). This is just an extra step in being prepared and organized on the road. If you decide to make a driving schedule, here are some things to consider:
- How long is the Drive from Point A to Point B?
- What time is load-in at the next venue?
- Plan on Traffic — Big cities add at least an hour
- For every 3 hours it takes in Google Maps, add another hour. (3 hours = 4 hours)
- Are there time-zone changes?
- Where do we park for Load-In/During the Show?
Perform a Day-Of-Show Advance
Advancing the Show is the process of confirming the details of your performance with the venue or the promoter in advance of the show. Day of Show Itinerary for Band, the Band!
There are two stages in the Show Advance: The first Advance is when you sign the Performance contract. This will be the time to review and negotiate things like the Hospitality Rider and the Performance Contract. The 2nd Advance, or Day-Of-Show Advance
is a courtesy from band management to venues and production staff. This is the time to double-check concerns like parking and any last minute hospitality needs. You should use this data to build a Day-Of-Show Itinerary.
This is your opportunity to keep the ship sailing as smoothly as possible — so keep everyone on the same page about load-in times & location, parking, doors & soundcheck, set time & length, hospitality such as wi-fi & dinner options, and venue contacts. Of course, you should stay in touch with the next venue on your tour if any thing changes in your timeline, such as being stuck in traffic & arriving late to your Load-In.
Don’t forget to get the money
If you do not have a Tour Manager, make sure the band designates someone who, every night, performs the Settlement process. Settlement
is when the Promoter of the show/Venue Owner goes through an itemized list of income and expenses with the Artist and then pays out the remaining balance.
Lets break down a settlement sheet together: Hypothetical Settlement Sheet for Band, The Band!
This is a 90% of Door Deal, with a $300 Guarantee for the supporting artist. This settlement sheet is broken into 3 sections: Ticket Sales
, and Split of Total Net
For this show, tickets were priced at 3 tiers: Advance
), Day of Show
), and VIP
). Note that the Sales Tax (8.9%
) is taken directly out of the Ticket Sales Gross
before any expenses are factored in. Expenses
generally include Overhead and Production fees (included here in Room Rental), as well as Marketing, Hospitality, and Police expenses. In this example, the Direct Support has been chosen by the Venue. If the Headlining Artist brings their own support, the $300 guarantee would be taken out of the Artist’s 90% Net instead of listed as a Venue expense.
For the Total Net
, the deal is divided up 90% to the Headliner and 10% to the Promoter. If this show did not sell any tickets, the Promoter would be on the hook for covering all venue expenses, including the Direct Support Guarantee and Room Rental. Luckily for this show, everyone walked away with a little bit of money!
If there is a problem with the money, Settlement is the time to address it. Do not email a venue 2 weeks after your show because you were paid less than you are owed because of negligence during Settlement. Lastly, do not take an IOU from the Promoter.
In my travels, I have been approached by a promoter who did not sell enough tickets to recoup the cost of putting on the show and could not pay us. In this situation, remember that they have signed a performance contract that legally obligates them to pay you and not a penny less! If this is a concern of yours, there are many non-profit legal teams that will represent artists in civil cases. Since I live in Georgia, I can recommend the Georgia Lawyer’s for the Arts Organization.
If you want to learn more about Deal Structure and Negotiating a Deal with a Promoter, click here
Take out a Musicians Insurance Policy
Some homeowner, renters, or automobile insurance policies cover musical items that are taken out of the house, but this is generally not the case. Musicians Insurance covers your instruments, recording gear, sound and light equipment, computer hardware, and various audio accessories. (here is a very detailed article from my friends at Performance Magazine about choosing Musician’s Insurance
) Additionally, standard insurance providers might not recognize the actual value of your gear. And in the event of a large claim, like a break-in, car accident, or venue fire, you will hit a per-category limit on your insurance and you might receive much less than what the gear is worth. You can take out a basic policy for up to $12,000 worth of gear for a little over 10$ a month. I’m not going to suggest any particular insurance company, but regardless of who you choose you will need to make an itemized list of all your gear. Definitely do some research and get some insurance. Hopefully you won’t need it but if you do, you will be glad you have it.
Purchase some Cases for your Gear
I know that road cases (I’ve used Georgia Case Company many times — their customer service is exceptional)
are expensive, but the cost of the case is usually less than the cost to repair. The road is a vulnerable and dangerous place for your gear. There are a lot of things that can go wrong and protecting your equipment is paramount! Car accidents, trailer problems, sketchy load-in, sketchy neighborhoods, Gear bouncing around and crashing into each other on bumpy roads. Many times you will have to leave your instruments, pedals, and accessories in less than ideal places, like mop closets, dark hallways, or even stacked against a venue wall for extended periods of time. If you are involved in a fast changeover on stage, you might not even be handling your own instrument. Without your gear you have no livelihood. If money is tight, I recommend checking your local pawn shops, who are known for having an excess of musical cases. Also check Ebay
for custom sized cases.
Create and Distribute a Tour AdMat / Poster
Industry standard size for a tour poster (check out this link for 60 gorgeous Tour Posters)
is 11 inches by 17 inches. Your tour poster should have all of your dates with your name/logo displayed prominently. Here’s the catch, venues don’t care about other shows on your tour poster, which is why the artist is also expected to prepare advertising materials to the venue. Ad Mat
is an abbreviation of Advertising Material and is usually a derivation of your tour poster. Except, instead of all of your tour dates listed, the poster has empty space for the venue to write in their own information. Venues prefer to write all of this in themselves, and that’s a good thing because this way you only have to prepare 1 Ad Mat to send to each venue.
Create a Band Debit Card & Bank Account
This is mostly for accounting purposes at the end of the year. Almost every expense on the road can be written off on your taxes (ESPECIALLY if you are a freelance musician, like I am
). Also, being able to look at a list of every expense at the conclusion of a tour will help you build a better budget and see in what areas you need to do better (such as eating out vs buying groceries, hotel expenses, and so much more
). On this note, it also means you can deposit cash on the road. You don’t want to have your van broken into or get robbed and lose $4,000 in cold cash sitting in your glove box. Regularly putting money into your bank account reduces the risk that you take by being on the road significantly!
Create An Effective Merchandise Table
Your merch table should function like an in-person marketing funnel (here is an excellent article that breaks down the concept of the Marketing Funnel
). When someone walks up to your merch table, that is a pivotal engagement between you and a potential customer! And so you need to make it as easy as possible for your fans to give you their information, make a purchase, or generally connect with your brand.
A couple tips about the Merch Table:
- Collect information for whichever platform you are most comfortable with. Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Email marketing. Whatever you choose, make sure you are using their information to your advantage. Invest in some art or decorations for your merch table, such as a fancy price sign, tablecloth, suitcase, etc. You want your merch table to be so beautiful that people take pictures and put it on Pinterest!
- Quick transactions! Invest in a POS (Point Of Sale) system that can quickly process debit card transactions and keep track of inventory.
- Order at least twice as many mediums and larges as you order smalls, XL’s, and 2XL’s. (In general, be aware of how much you need of what item on the table! Whether this means keeping an inventory log or just using intuition.)
- For more tips, check out this DIY Musician Article about Merch Tables!
The secret to selling a shit-load of merch is to understand that the merch table is where consumers buy accessories to the experience. Your consumer often doesn’t really want or need a shirt or as a lighter, or a pair of sunglasses, the consumer wants to take home a piece of the band with them, and so they decide which format of that experience they like the most and then they buy it. Your job as the band is to project the experience of your music into material items that can be manufactured and sold at a 400% margin. You get bonus points if you have things on your merch table that folks actually need, such as ponchos at a rainy outdoor show.
Stay Healthy on the Road
Do some Exercise and Watch What you Eat!
- Every time your van stops, get out of the van and stretch. Remaining in stasis (not moving) can be really damaging on your body and mental health. Keeping your blood moving while on a long drive to your next show is actually incredibly important. Don’t be a lazy bum and nap the whole ride. Hop out and do some jumping jacks or do some stretches. 10 years from now, you will thank yourself for it.
- Invest in a gym membership for exercise on your off days or some clean showers
- Cocaine is a hell of a drug
- Beer does not count as a meal (neither does coffee)
- Gas Station food is NOT worth it
- Group Stretch for morale
- Warm up before EVERY show
- Bring a Cooler to save food — this lets you stop at grocery stores instead of gas stations
Take care of your teeth
Health Insurance is unlikely in the cards for you, so make sure you are at least taking care of your teeth. (I recommend wrapping your toothbrush in a paper towel in a Ziploc bag so it stays clean on the road!
) Dental Hygiene is no joke. Not only is it a form of preventative healthcare but brushing your teeth in the morning and before you go to bed becomes a routine. Consistency can be hard to find on the road, so the act of brushing your teeth is actually a form of commitment to the longevity of your career as a professional musician. And to be honest, if you can’t handle brushing your teeth on the road then you are not going to make it very far in this industry.
I had the pleasure of sitting in on a studio session of some old-time legends… I’m talking like, 70 years old plus doing a special radio set in town. After the show, I asked them all for a piece of advice and their biggest musical regret. One of the guys said “I wish I brushed my teeth” and gave me a big smile full of GNARLY teeth… I’ve been brushing twice a day since!
Sleeping is important!
- Sleep in clean underwear
- Bring a Clean Pillow
- Try to get at least 6 hours of sleep
- Cots are significantly better than Air Mattresses
- You can always say NO to the after-show party. For the audience — this is their escape night. For you — its a job. Treat it like one!
- Bring Extra Earplugs (in case you have some noisy band mates)
Take care of your touring Vehicle
- Keep all of your receipts and log your mileage for tax purposes. When you write off your taxes (in the US), you actually get more money back if you log mileage instead of gas charges, so keep a log of mileage at the beginning and end of your tours. You will also need to know mileage to calculate the depreciation of your van at the end of the year (another tax write-off).
- Keep a toolbox and some gloves in the van or trailer for any side-of-the-road repairs… it’s gonna happen!
- Clean your vehicle before you leave for tour
- Always have a spare tire
- Change your transmission fluid every 50,000 miles (even when they tell you 100)
- Keep a toolbox handy for any side-of-the-road repairs
- Create multiple sets of Van Keys
- Try your best not to park illegally and get towed/boot
A Few other Tips:
- If they don’t give you a limit on your food buyout, order as much as you can
- Invest in an Unlimited Data plan for entertainment and work in the van
- Perform multiple dummy checks
- Things to keep somewhere in the van: Tums, Ibuprofen, Febreeze, Vitamin C, Gold Bond
- Be honest with your band mates
- That girl is probably not into you, or worth your time
- Talk to your fans — they are the reason that you get to play music all over the country
- Don’t get arrested in Texas, Florida or Kansas
- Don’t forget to have fun
This Article is from the “2019 Music Industry Success Series”. This eBook is Free! You can grab a copy here. You can also check out my Podcast, Website, or email me at [email protected]
submitted by nowimalamp