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View Full Version : How do Sirs Paul and Richard (Ringo) keep up such a concert schedule?


Uncle Fred
6th Apr 2018, 22:10
Or for that matter any musician?

Now that Ringo has been invested I know we should call him Sir Richard...but I assume that Ringo would still do?

I was looking at his schedule for this summer (to be found here: Upcoming Dates | Ringo Starr (http://www.ringostarr.com/tour)) and noticed just how many concerts he gives one day after another.

I have read that up until a year or so ago that Sir Paul was giving 100 concerts a year--to include the Europe, the U.S., and Japan.

Ok...I understand that this is what they do and they have the material down pat so that one concert is like another, but good heavens--flying knocks the stuffing out of me and I enjoy a good few days off a month. There is no way I could do a week of this.

For you musicians out there, how can someone as wealthy as these gents, and at their age, put themselves through the grind of a concert one night in city X and then another one the next evening in city Y and so on? I am quite a bit younger than these men and I would be laid flat after the third night?

Do they travel through the night or get up early and then fly/drive before the next day's concert?

Why not build a few days off in between dates? They can certainly afford it.

Again, before someone tells me that just because they are who they are or that you do not like their music or about all the money that they have that this should be expected...I just can't see how they can keep from falling over or their voices going completely blank.

Anyone with experience in working this field? Oddly, I have never thought about what they put themselves through.

Of course they put themselves through this and then can write songs about how tough life is on the road!

gileraguy
7th Apr 2018, 03:20
I recall an interview with Bernard Fanning of Powderfinger fame where he stated the reduced revenue from music sales has forced the band back to the road to derive income.

"Your albums are just posters advertising your concerts now" (or words to that effect).

It must be because of the interweb downloaders not paying for the music.

So perhaps the Sirs are making hay while the sun still shines...

Ascend Charlie
7th Apr 2018, 07:39
You want a tough tour schedule, have a look at what Buddy Holly and his cricket team were doing - galloping back and forward across the snowy North American winter in an unheated bus, a gig in every hick town, drive all night to the next town, and so on.

No wonder Buddy decided to jump in a plane to cut the travel time, sadly the little lighty didn't get through the snowstorm.

sitigeltfel
7th Apr 2018, 07:51
The net worth of many "artistes" is reported in hundreds of millions, but that doesn't equate to cash in the bank. For many, touring is the only way to keep the wolves from the door and the ex wives and hangers on fed.

RAT 5
7th Apr 2018, 09:34
You want a tough tour schedule, have a look at what Buddy Holly and his cricket team were doing

BB King was the ultimate touring professional. (Sounds like a golfer). He did very little studio work, but pumped it out on stage. I suppose being a King he didn't need a knighthood.

funfly
7th Apr 2018, 10:37
I think that in the case of the group the royalties went mainly to the song writers rather than the performers, thus Ringo received less than the others.

cattletruck
7th Apr 2018, 12:22
I asked the same question to a colleague who was given tickets to see the Paul McCartney. The reply came back.
1. The crowd sing his old songs.
2. The crowd take a toilet break when he sings his new songs.

ShyTorque
7th Apr 2018, 14:21
Paul McCartney uses a stunt double these days.

I've heard him, he can't sing for toffee!

:oh:

Rush2112
8th Apr 2018, 04:29
In Macca's case it's why, not how.

SnowFella
8th Apr 2018, 08:05
What's even more impressive is how long the sets are, better half recently went to a McCartney concert here downunder and it was a solid 2+ hours with 40 songs played.

B Fraser
8th Apr 2018, 08:13
I see we are discussing the best drummer in the Beatles. Ringo also gets a mention.

Uncle Fred
8th Apr 2018, 09:57
What's even more impressive is how long the sets are, better half recently went to a McCartney concert here downunder and it was a solid 2+ hours with 40 songs played.

Indeed. YouTube has a 2013 or so Tokyo concert that is well past the two hour mark.

Tankertrashnav
8th Apr 2018, 10:31
Bernard Fanning of Powderfinger fame

Who he?

Who they?

:confused:

meadowrun
8th Apr 2018, 10:52
Drugs.


They worked out the right balance years ago, Lucy.

goudie
8th Apr 2018, 11:40
The big bands in America from the 30s to the 50s had a gruelling tour time table, all done on a coach. They would finish one show get on a coach and travel through the night to the next destination. A few hours kip, rehearsals and on with the show. If they were lucky some bands would be signed up for a season in a smart hotel resort.

rotornut
8th Apr 2018, 18:28
Our own Gordon Lightfoot still does a bit of touring at 79:
https://frontrowtickets.com/Gordon-Lightfoot-tickets.aspx?gclid=CjwKCAjw-6bWBRBiEiwA_K1ZDQdpSV1UY2fvp6tNGGPefHCXdmFn-NS47qwFtdOA6NI5Sfp19_AjhhoCHtIQAvD_BwE

Uncle Fred
8th Apr 2018, 23:51
The big bands in America from the 30s to the 50s had a gruelling tour time table, all done on a coach. They would finish one show get on a coach and travel through the night to the next destination. A few hours kip, rehearsals and on with the show. If they were lucky some bands would be signed up for a season in a smart hotel resort.

That had to have been a grind. I can understand if one were a poor struggling musician trying to get a foothold in the business, but it must have been hard to put a good face on it night after night when all one probably wanted at that moment was a good meal and a sleep. How many times can one hear the same song before the magic of it starts to fade?

Monkey Boy
9th Apr 2018, 12:14
A more simple answer could be that perhaps they just enjoy performing? I know a lot of musicians who aren't in it for the money or fame, and when going on tour they have the time of their lives. It's not all about $$$

Flyingbadge
9th Apr 2018, 14:24
we saw Ringo and his All Star Band in Vegas a few months ago.
He took a few strategic breaks during instrumentals but otherwise was just a man enjoying his music. Didn't move around a lot on stage, but he is 77 so i'll give him that.
Was really nice to see how well received he was by the fans, genuine affection, who ranged from 40's to 70's.
Also saw Blondie last month...surprisingly energetic for 72....put a real shift in!

Hempy
9th Apr 2018, 16:16
It must be all the sex and drugs and rock’n’roll.

At the time this was recorded Brian Johnson was 62, Angus Young was 54, Malcolm Young was 56, Phil Rudd was 55 and Cliff Williams was 60. I only wish I’ve got this much energy at that age, although that crowd would get anyone up and about :ok:

3tOKYFR4Rzg

wiggy
9th Apr 2018, 16:59
siti..

The net worth of many "artistes" is reported in hundreds of millions, but that doesn't equate to cash in the bank. For many, touring is the only way to keep the wolves from the door and the ex wives and hangers on fed.

Or another option is as the late Leonard Cohen found out: one of the "hangers on" ran off with the money..

https://www.billboard.com/articles/news/magazine-feature/7580545/leonard-cohen-embezzlement-career-comeback

ethicalconundrum
9th Apr 2018, 17:59
Years ago, in a place far, far away I was both a recording engineer for A&M records(glorified coffee-getter, but I did do tuning, mic setup, and mixing), and also a roady for YES. Here's how it goes: The 'talent' does literally nothing except sound check and performance. They do not do their own meals, travel, or anything other than the music set they plan. Once the concert is over in one town, they get in a limo/helicopter, go to the hotel and sleep through the night until 9-10 the next morning. From there, food is ready, the plane is ready, everything is ready, and they hop on a private plane to the next venue within 1-4 hours arriving by about 4PM. Sound check, and set list is done from 4:30-5ish and then they go on at 8PM after a light dinner.

Literally EVERYTHING else is done by the road/travel crew. There are at least two full sets of sound/musical equipment, and they hopscotch each other to the venues. Sometimes there are three full sets, or two full sets, and some personal equipment that moves with the talent. Travel managers job is extremely stressful, and they get burned out in a matter of years, or months. The talent works from about 4PM to 10PM which is a full time job of course, but the reality is, that after the sound check, everything sits for 3-4 hours and then the show goes on.

I toured with Springsteen a couple times, and the road crew back then had tons of fun. It was a hard job, for young healthy kids, but we found plenty of time for alternative entertainment and goofing off. Bruce was pretty distant except for the stage manager. They would talk constantly, and the stage mgr would give out directions, and get stuff done. Bruce didn't have time for anyone but Bruce, and I guess I don't blame him. I recorded Blondie(Debbie Harry) in LA a few times she came out for voice-over work. Her boyfriend had some kind of kidney, or liver problem and he was in and out of Cedar-Sinai hosp regularly. She did comm for many products and I got to know her pretty well. Aside from being a stoner, she was pretty nice in the mid-80s. At least when we were working on comm voice stuff.

Uncle Fred
9th Apr 2018, 19:29
Years ago, in a place far, far away I was both a recording engineer for A&M records(glorified coffee-getter, but I did do tuning, mic setup, and mixing), and also a roady for YES. Here's how it goes: The 'talent' does literally nothing except sound check and performance. They do not do their own meals, travel, or anything other than the music set they plan. Once the concert is over in one town, they get in a limo/helicopter, go to the hotel and sleep through the night until 9-10 the next morning. From there, food is ready, the plane is ready, everything is ready, and they hop on a private plane to the next venue within 1-4 hours arriving by about 4PM. Sound check, and set list is done from 4:30-5ish and then they go on at 8PM after a light dinner.

Literally EVERYTHING else is done by the road/travel crew. There are at least two full sets of sound/musical equipment, and they hopscotch each other to the venues. Sometimes there are three full sets, or two full sets, and some personal equipment that moves with the talent. Travel managers job is extremely stressful, and they get burned out in a matter of years, or months. The talent works from about 4PM to 10PM which is a full time job of course, but the reality is, that after the sound check, everything sits for 3-4 hours and then the show goes on.

I toured with Springsteen a couple times, and the road crew back then had tons of fun. It was a hard job, for young healthy kids, but we found plenty of time for alternative entertainment and goofing off. Bruce was pretty distant except for the stage manager. They would talk constantly, and the stage mgr would give out directions, and get stuff done. Bruce didn't have time for anyone but Bruce, and I guess I don't blame him. I recorded Blondie(Debbie Harry) in LA a few times she came out for voice-over work. Her boyfriend had some kind of kidney, or liver problem and he was in and out of Cedar-Sinai hosp regularly. She did comm for many products and I got to know her pretty well. Aside from being a stoner, she was pretty nice in the mid-80s. At least when we were working on comm voice stuff.

Thank you Ethical. That is a great explanation and exactly what I was looking for--how it unfolds in a 24 hour frame. Sounds as if the talent even has time for a kip sometime before the show even if they did not get a good night's sleep the night before.

Sounds like a tough job for the manager and crew though. Sure a lot of fun but hard work nonetheless. Such is youth I guess!

For all the stories of sex, drugs, and R&R it sounds as if it is just yeoman's duty on the road. For the performers, the studio must be more sedate but then there must be something to having thousands of people who are the just to see you...for many that must be quite the addictive high.

I read that Slash said that he only got in real trouble when he got bored so maybe it was best to keep many of the acts moving.

Again, good recounting of your experiences.

goudie
9th Apr 2018, 20:59
I saw a documentary a few years ago about The Rolling Stones. To unwind after a performance, Ronnie Wood and Keith Richards had a hotel room completely blacked out, on the table would be booze and probably substances of their choice. They would sit and ‘jam’ until the adrenaline had subsided and they could eventually catch some sleep.
Drug fuelled or not, for their age The Rolling Stones still exhibit amazing energy.

ethicalconundrum
9th Apr 2018, 22:06
Thank you Ethical. That is a great explanation and exactly what I was looking for--how it unfolds in a 24 hour frame. Sounds as if the talent even has time for a kip sometime before the show even if they did not get a good night's sleep the night before.

Sounds like a tough job for the manager and crew though. Sure a lot of fun but hard work nonetheless. Such is youth I guess!

For all the stories of sex, drugs, and R&R it sounds as if it is just yeoman's duty on the road. For the performers, the studio must be more sedate but then there must be something to having thousands of people who are the just to see you...for many that must be quite the addictive high.

I read that Slash said that he only got in real trouble when he got bored so maybe it was best to keep many of the acts moving.

Again, good recounting of your experiences.

No prob, happy to help. As for studio, things have changed massively since I was in the biz back in the early 80s. Back then, video was just getting started. What A&M did was cut the tracks with the talent, and we might do 3-50 takes. We could also mix in, and splice different sounds into the master, and dub, and other stuff. Once that was done, if the producer wanted to pay for it, we would do a studio mix with the talent cleaned up, and studio somewhat cleaned up, and the video on.

I did almost all studio work, and much of it was for regular voice commercial stuff. I changed shifts to afternoon/night once I got into eng school nearby. From then on, it was all big name acts(for A&M anyway). Some people spent their studio time efficiently, some wasted it like it was water. Back then, we charged about $800-1400/hr for studio and eng team in the evenings when the 'talent' showed up. If we had to work with a vid crew, prices went up over $2000/hr. Of course, not all acts rated, or would pay for video, but some did.

The song 'Video killed the radio star' was about the coming of the age of video, and how it was killing the actual musical talent that was so prevalent in the late 60s through the 70s. Acts like Janis Joplin, and Rod Stewart(he was roundly hated for no talent but good looking) would never make it in the modern video era. Too weird, too focused on looks rather than ability.

The nicest guy to work with in the industry was Micheal Nesmith of Monkees fame. He was one of the most talented guys I ever came across. Few know it, but he was a 'song doctor', much like a script doctor who fixes TV/movie scripts. Producers would bring him some rough tracks, lyrics but with a catchy mix and he would arrange it and put in backing vocals, or instruments and really turn it around. He's got writing credits on some of the biggest songs out there from 76-90s, but he's not on the label because of his history with the Monkees. In another weird turn, Nesmith was one of the early adopters of video, both music and for pre-recorded media. He foresaw the future of MTV long before it was a reality.

rotornut
10th Apr 2018, 01:01
Hey ethical.......,
This is fascinating stuff. Anything you can say about the music industry will certainly get a lot of attention.

Uncle Fred
10th Apr 2018, 01:10
Good stuff ethical. Must have been interesting work.

SnowFella
10th Apr 2018, 06:26
Guess that's unless your name is Bruce Dickinson and you regularly do some pretty darn large gigs and then usually straps yourself into the pointy end of the transport plane to fly to the next location. :ok:

Jhieminga
10th Apr 2018, 08:53
I doubt if Bruce can do that every time as he needs to be well rested before hes legal to fly.

Clare Prop
16th Apr 2018, 03:43
Bruce Dickinson is a legend, just finished his book "What does this button do?" It's a cracking good read.

Ethical, must be nice to work with musicians who go back to the hotel after the show, most of the ones I've TM'd for have been in their 50s and 60s but can still party like there is no (5 am lobby call) tomorrow...! It's very difficult to "come down" after a great show.

You have to keep the momentum up on tour, the less days off the better, plus the cost of accommodating and feeding the band and crew for a non revenue day and the risk of them getting into mischief. Hard work, yes. One tour I realised I hadn't eaten or slept for six days and was running on pure adrenaline, lost 10kg in a week. Yes it's fun too, among the work and rolls of gaffa tape there are practical jokes and stupid songs for when people start getting tired and grumpy and sick of the sight of each other and you have had a Spinal Tap day. (One tour we had the Ying Tong Song as our theme tune) Getting mistaken for Fleetwood Mac is one of the weirdest things that happened to me with a band at Sydney airport, but we signed some of their albums anyway....:}

I often wonder if the famous Tommy Lee stuck upside down on their last show was the road crew making the most of their last chance to play a huge, unforgettable prank on him? :D

tucumseh
16th Apr 2018, 06:48
Bob Dylan is 76 and has a huge schedule. Has had since 1987. 30 years constantly touring. Before that it was only about 6 months a year. Couldn't take the pace as a youngster.

Uncle Fred
19th Apr 2018, 11:30
Clare you make a good point about best keeping things moving.

Someone made the point that the artists probably very much enjoy it and seeing that clip of Macca belting it out for two and a quarter hours it is clear that he must be having a good time...but ethical and Clare, don't they get tired of performing the same songs over and over and over all the time? Mustering the enthusiasm as if that particular crowd was the best one they have ever encountered?

Of course I have never stood before 20,000 screaming fans so maybe that is the key, but I would think that they would get bloody tired of certain songs after a bit. Maybe it is just the personality. I find a lot of music, irrespective of the genre, gets tendentious after a short while.

I recently watched Ron Howard's film Eight Days a Week and it is clear that by 1965 the lads had had enough. So much so that they were just phoning it in at that point.

ethicalconundrum
27th Apr 2018, 16:27
Clare might have better insight on the burnout issue than I did. Mostly I was in the engineering side of things. I'm sure that some acts really get sick of the same performance after 400 or more shows. I went to see Roger Waters about 4 years ago, and near the end of the second set he did DSOM. Although the crowd was pumped up, and screaming he didn't seem all that into it. Or - it may be that DSOM is not a uplifting, joyous story, but concerning a friend of his going quietly insane. We would know by the middle of the second set(after the break) if the artist was going to do an encore. Waters did NOT do an encore that night. After the final beat of DSOM he waved his hand a few times, and walked off.

Also, every artist and every group have a dynamic. Springsteen always does an encore because it's baked into his contract. However there are some artists whom would do one for the adulation I'm sure. I watched as Edgar Winter played until they closed the place down around him. There are acts that love to perform, but I'm pretty sure that most acts eventually get sick of the same stuff. One of the good things is that big acts which have been around for 40 years have a huge catalog to choose from. This was apparent when I saw Sir Paul a while back and part of his set was Sexy Sadie, and and Fool On the Hill. He did not do Yesterday. Some songs don't lend themselves well to huge crowds and big auditoriums. Frex, Yes never does Siberian Khatru on the road(when I was there) because it was a complex and hard song to do on the road.

jindabyne
27th Apr 2018, 19:11
Money --- And good luck to them.