I haven’t done a tour in the Rock’n’Roll business for over twenty years now so what you are about to read is definitely ancient history.
When I started in the business in the early 1970’s none of us really had any clue what we were really doing, there were no colleges teaching audio courses or how to be a roadie.
We were just a bunch of hippies who thought that been in a band or even working as a roadie was actually better than working for a living.
We were basically making it up as we went along.
A few years earlier I’d taught myself to play drums and I also taught myself how to be a sound engineer, although with no drum lessons and no electronics background my technical abilities in both sports were somewhat limited, and still are.
I think I was a half decent drummer and a pretty good sound engineer (so I’ve been told), but I still can’t say I know much more technical about the job than when I first started doing it.
Although I haven’t toured with a band for twenty years, I’m still in the business and I know what is required of engineers in this day and age.
There is less money thrown at the job, the parameters of the job are different and there is definitely more competition for the jobs.
The pioneer days of rock’n’roll touring were from 1969 onwards and the next twenty five years or so were to mould the business we see now.
There are two schools of thought that the rock’n’roll business as we know it started with the Woodstock concert in 1969, others say that the rock’n’roll touring business started at the end the last chord of the last song of The Beatles concert at Shea Stadium in New York in 1965, such was the chaos to that point.
I just feel so lucky to have been part of that first twenty five years of history in the rock’n’roll business.
It was wild, it was wacky and it was weird and sometimes it was just downright wrong, but I’d like to share some of it with you.
It all starts very quietly in the North of England.