Most people will never understand the thrill of being on a stage because, actually, they have never been. That complex array of mixed emotions, gut feeling and embarrassment which sometimes spawns some of the World’s greatest awesomeness may be related to travel in many ways.
As I previously wrote , by bringing an instrument on your travels you may enhance the chances of casual encounters with locals, volunteer opportunities, earn some money as you go and many other serendipitous experiences making a trip much more worth remembering.
But… what about those people who are actually travelling by playing music? What about the touring artists? They do get to travel, yes. A lot. And the best part is… they get paid for it!!
The role of the musician in today’s society is generally misunderstood, placed on a superior level, a better niche, and is generally perceived as something we may never get to attain. Well… deadly wrong, my friends. Playing music and get to travel is easier than you would think, if your expectations remain in the realm of realism. Because Woodstock and the 70s, unfortunately, are long gone in the sands of mythology and times…
I decided to start writing a series of posts to help those with a musical penchant to analyze their skills, organize them into a musical product, and take it out on the road by touring… and consequently get to travel the world in an amazingly different way.
How many times have you wandered the streets of most European and American cities, visiting different bars, and asking yourself how could that terrible guitarist get to strum those elementary notes on a stage, drunk, and just plain mediocre? If such people get a chance to express themselves, why should not you, a skilled, enthusiastic musician, get to do the same?
Because you do not know how, possibly. Because the music business still remains one of the least accessible cast systems in the show business… possibly alike to literary circles, but with a bigger emphasis on the egos, the booze, and the mayhem. And most times, believe me, when you get into those circles, you will understand that you CAN DO much better than most of them.
So, if you have dreamed about packing that guitar/ukulele/flute/keyboard/saxophone and taking it out on the road, driving long distances in vans crammed with people, sleeping on the floors of total strangers who have become your new best friends after a night of musical entertainment – and possible drunk mayhem -, getting to know the insights of the World’s furthest corners’ youth cultures, and making a lot of friends –and boy/girlfriends – along the way… well, if you really DID dream about this, tune up your RSS feed on Vagabonding because from this week onwards, and sometimes sporadically, you will find a wealth of useful information.
Now, go back to the bed, and keep practicing on the guitar!!! Because nothing in this World comes without effort… and this is the bottom line of this introduction, and Lesson Number One.