The 5 steps to make sure your tour is kickass, according to The Snowdroppers

The Snowdroppers are one of those band who sell tickets to shows on their reputation alone. If you haven’t seen these gentlemen doing their thing on stage then you’re in luck. The band are embarking on their Gluttons for Punishment tour in February, so if you love your rock n’ roll shows raw and loud get yourself a ticket. As connoisseurs of the stage, the band decided to impart some sage-like wisdom to anyone wishing to put on their own kick ass rock show.

The Snowdroppers guide to rock

The Snowdroppers eat rock n’ roll for breakfast, so who better to ask for the ultimate guide to putting on the best rock show? Hint; there’s a lot of grog is involved.

Drink In Moderation

Sure, have a few before you go on stage to get you into a nice, greased-up, relaxed-but-still-slightly-anxious zone – but getting so frothied up that you forget how to play your instrument, speed up to a million miles per hour and have to take a piss half way through the gig is a classic Rookie Mistake. I mean – Cookie Mistake. Which is what we call Andy “Cougar” Cook, our drummer. We call him Cookie. Sometimes.

Get triple J Rotation

This one, as the Americans say, is a no-brainer. triple J is the national youth broadcaster, and as such, has unrivaled reach into the prized 18-24 youth demographic. All across this great nation, from Fremantle to Cape York – if you have a song on triple J rotation you will get a very substantial boost to your live audience. All too often I see local bands (usually metal bands or experimental acts) pull only a handful of punters to their shows, and I always say  “Give triple J a call – that’s what they’re there for!” If you’ve got a new album coming out, call them up and get them to feature it as Album of the Week as well – as we say in show business, “there’s no such thing as bad publicity”.

Respect Your Fans

The Snowdroppers have had the pleasure of sharing the stage with acts far more popular and beloved than ourselves, and it always disappoints me beyond measure when the headline act, having finished their show, disappears into the night without so much as a “Thanks for Coming, Dunnydoo” to their adoring supporters. The Snowdroppers, however, have always taken pride in spending as much time as possible mingling amongst, drinking with, and just plain-old getting to know the range of people that make it all possible in the first place – the fans! It disgusts me that not all bands extend the same courtesy. Especially, I must say, due to the fact that the vast majority of our fans are absolutely appalling individuals. Bereft of the most basic standards of decency, sobriety, or respect of bodily integrity.

Get Absolutely Wankered Drunk

So you’ve been doing the same thing for almost ten years with these three other guys to the point where you can actually answer the age old question “who farted in the tour van?” without a second guess because your nose has been smelling the same combinations of odour molecules for so long. Much like a master sommelier who can tell which vineyard a fine wine heralds from, that part of your brain has been instead been used up recognising which of three rear ends has farted, and the occasional variation, “Oh God, Who Sharted?“. And then some jackass has the hide to tell you not to drink too much before you go on stage? Oh yeah? Well I don’t see anyone ELSE lining up to do this job! Why don’t you go play your own tour, and I’ll come and be YOUR manager and tell YOU you’ve got a problem, Jason!

Play to a Big Audience (see also: Festivals)

A big crowd means more energy, more ticket sales, more money over the merch counter – all of these things help contribute to a tour being kick ass. Now, it’s not enough to simply get booked onto a festival – as there’s a vast amount of festivals that just aren’t organised properly. It boggles the mind but we’ve played many festivals where, right up until around the time The Snowdroppers have gone on stage, there’s a big crowd – we start playing – and then tumbleweeds! As our manager’s always explained, this is due to Piss Poor Logistical Planning. Not enough public transport or festival infrastructure to support a larger crowd that late at night. Especially worrying, because to the average punter it looks like the band’s fault. Over the years, we’ve managed to leverage our bargaining power to go on earlier and earlier in the day at most festivals to avoid that kind of amateur hour stuff.