This past weekend was spent closing out a number of "in-progress" items on my tour checklist. It feels like 90% of the logistics necessary to plan before we leave have been accomplished, and my checklist keeps getting shorter and shorter as I knock items off the list.
Excitement and bit of exhaustion are creeping in now that the cannon has been pointed and we're getting ready to light the fuse.
I'm a firm believer in lists. I would forget half of what I need without them.
Here's a sample of what mine looks like today:
Jim’s Running List of Things To Do
Keyboard stand, case, and laptop extension- DONE, 88 key case- DONE
Notify work peeps- DONE
Notify other work peeps- DONE
Notify family - DONE
Notify Facebook, Different Skies, etc - DONE
Get sound replacement for June 13 folk show- DONE
Gear insurance - DONE
Stencils for cases - DONE
Pedal board - DONE
Dentist Appt- DONE
Get Sensitive Chaos CDs made- DONE
Make Sensitive Chaos signs for merch - DONE
Stage clothes - DONE
Get case for printer/supplies - DONE
Set up iPad - DONE
Road playlist - DONE
Reading material - DONE
Get Merch box together - DONE
Config Pelican Case - MOSTLY DONE
Set up road laptop - IN PROGRESS
Back up Kronos and copy into Dropbox too - DONE For Files. Still need samples.
Pack - IN PROGRESS
Decide what food/drink to bring with
Read the above as investment, both in time and money, into preparing for this tour.
Personal investment, ala time off from work, using vacation time, rehearsal time.
Equipment investment in cases, keyboard file backups, and insurance to protect my gear, as well as a few items to make sure I sound good and can set things up/tear things down quickly and reliably for the now 16 performances we'll be playing.
There's clothes investment to be comfortable and project the right image on stage.
I'm attempting to sell a few of my solo Sensitive Chaos CDs, so needed to press up a few and a case to demo and present.
There's being able to communicate and accomplish business stuff on tour. And promote our progress to family and fans.
And there's lots of down time, so things to read, things to listen to, things to document all the places we're traveling to as well as the people we'll meet, and our own experiences performing, and what to snack on during the drives.
I was discussing all of this with a friend last Friday and her comment was "nobody knows this is what you have to do for this kind of touring." And each individual in the band has there own list. And Kim and Tracy's list is larger because they've been taking on the larger share of booking shows, booking hotels, booking vans, dealing with road managers and promotion people, etc.
We have no managers, no roadies, no equipment techs. So it's truly a very DIY experience, for better or for worse. Mostly for the better, but definitely for more work. And we own the outcome, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Which means it will be authentic if nothing else.
I'm glad I got started when I did. I think I'll just be able to check everything off my list before hitting the road.