I don’t expect the casual music fan to understand the economics of being in a touring band. Instead, I’ll throw out some common scenarios to which most of us relate:
Jesus Christ, the cost of gas keeps rising!
This fucking piece of shit car needs another fucking repair.
Holy shit, my food bill keeps going up. So does my phone bill, my energy bill and all of my other bills! Hey assholes, I’m trying to make a fucking living here!
Fuck me, will there be a year when my taxes *aren’t* raised?
Our business is growing, which is great, but goddammit, it’s gonna cost me *that* much to hire more employees?
I don’t have health insurance. I might as well just die if I get sick. Fuck off, America!
Now I’ll throw out some scenarios that are a little more band-centric:
No one buys our album, not because it isn’t good but because they just illegally downloaded it. Do they think we’re Bon Jovi or something?
People come to our shows which rules, but then they buy a couple extra drinks instead of a t-shirt or a record. Yo, we fucking love beer but it doesn’t put gas in our van!
In addition to making a small living for ourselves, we might have to pay a publicist, a tour manager, a booking agent, a merch dude/dudette, a tech or all of them. Or we could just do it all ourselves, spread ourselves too thin and not be good at anything as a result. Anyone can be Fugazi, right?
Kids, if art enriches your life in any way, be a patron of it. Don’t act like an entitled shithead, because if you keep doing that eventually bands are just going to stop touring, which I know sounds crazy, but think about how many bands scale back their operations or only tour regionally now unless they’re on a package bill because they lose money every time they go out. It’s a whole lot.