Hello! Let’s talk about tour routing today.
Know what’s beautiful for people that are new to the industry?
Others than came before you have already done the work for you! I’ll explain…
Let’s say you are a hardcore band looking to go on your first tour. You have zero idea of which markets are beneficial. You don’t know the first thing about touring. All you know is that you want to drive to new locations and play.
Where do you start?
Routing a tour means going and figured out the exactly path you are going to take, or want to take. In my limited touring experience I can absolutely tell you, if you are a smaller level band, you’re plan for a route will be changed. Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a plan though.
The tour I am planning right now will start in Fort Myers, FL and we are looking for it to end in Louisville, Kentucky. In just three weeks of working on it, I have changed the route about four different times. Not major changes, but maybe the bands play one surrounding city instead of another. That’s how it will change on you. You want to play Pittsburgh but you play Dover, PA instead.
So where should you start? Look at your favorite bands tour route! I often look at Warped Tour, see the cities they are hitting, and go from there. Why do this? Because a tour as big as Warped Tour has done their research. They will not play in a city that does not have a sufficient rock presence. They determine this by looking at number of factors, one of the largest being a rock FM radio station. See, FM radio stations can tell a lot about a city. I used to live in Fort Lauderdale. I lived there for seven years. Only until the last year and half did they have a rock station. Otherwise it was country, EDM, hip-hop, top 40, etc. As a result of the rock station, more bands started to plan their trip down there.
That’s pretty much it. Work smarter not harder right? Someone else has already done the work for you. Take advantage of this, and get to planning!