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How do you family guys handle playing on the road?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by jamestown94west, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. I finally got an awesome offer from a professional band, after having a rough summer of bar gigs. This new opportunity will have me on the road 3 days a week, every single week. I have three kids, a fiance, a farm, and a day job. I'm considering taking this gig because the money is excellent, it pays better than my day job. I need to keep my day job, so I'm concerned I will get burned out from constantly working, and not having time for my family or my farm.

    I need advice from people who have been there and done that.
  2. I've turned down so many gigs since getting married and having kids that I no longer get asked.

    Personally my wife was never ok with the idea, and that's how it goes! I chose to be with her and that's what I lost out on. and I want to be there for my kids, but I understand the (a) desire to take the gig, (b) pride in getting a great gig and (c) the joy in touring, along with (d) the money!

    So I too wonder how it can be done for some folks - I'll be interested to follow this thread.

    I hope there is some helpful advice here! My own is only that imho it can't be done in a typical relationship, but there are those with some pretty generous and forgiving spouses and kids who may be able to pull it off for a while.

    Now if I was offered a million bucks then my wife and kids would possibly be ok with it for a while LoL...
  3. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Every single week for how long? Is this a specific tour, or a regional band that's just out on the road playing every single weekend till the cows come home? If this was a fixed thing for a month or two I would go for it, but not an open-ended commitment.
  4. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    I say go for it until you burn out. Then you won't sit back and say "what if...".
    I've done it a few times when I was younger. It was fun back then.
  5. I did it then too but I wasn't married with kids.
  6. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I just need to get one thing straight before I can really help. You stated that you have a day job. And you also stated that this gig would pay more than the day job. So, you are saying that to make ends meet you have to have more than TWICE what you are currently making? And does your farm MAKE any money? I'm just thinking that either you need to simplify your lifestyle or find one job that pays more than the day job, the farm, and the gig put together.

    Honestly, it seems to me as though you are trying to serve too many masters. You must love the farm. You must love the day job. You must love your family. And you must love music. I think you are trying to juggle chainsaws. You might do it for a little while, but eventually you will get cut..... or drop a saw.

    I am perfectly willing to admit that I based that opinion on very little information and could be 180 degrees wrong. Best of luck either way.
  7. Lonnybass


    Jul 19, 2000
    San Diego
    Endorsing Artist: Pedulla Basses
    Just gave my two months' notice to my band because they were all ready, willing and able to commit to weekend shows every 2 to 3 weeks.

    With two little kids, a wife who works full-time and a demanding full-time job myself, there was simply no way I could commit to that kind of schedule without making sacrifices I didn't want to make.

    At the end of the day I think you need to be prepared for the high likelihood of feeling overwhelmed and wishing you weren't as overextended after giving it a shot for a while. I think you should make some decisions about what's most important to you and how you want to make sure those important things don't suffer somehow.

  8. I gave up regular gigging for the family. I still have some local action, but I don't miss missing out on everything my family does because I had a gig.

    Decide what matters in YOUR life, and go from there.
  9. wmheilma


    Jan 5, 2010
    My $.02 is I don't tour any more. I work as a side man for a lot of bands near home. My kids need me around even if I am working a day job M-F and gigging two nights a week. The road and the girls out on it spelled the end of my first marriage. Don't lose your benefits from the day job either. Health insurance for the family is a lot of dough! I was paying over $600 a month for bad coverage! Plus I have vision and dental for the family now.
  10. I have a mixed livestock hobby farm. It does make money, but only every so often, and not enough to really count on. I don't need a second job making a ton of money, but we are planning on remodeling our house in the spring, and we are also going to buy a new truck. Pulling on the extra money from the gig for awhile would help tremendously. I could also pay off our current vehicle, pay down my student loans, and build our savings back up. I would do that working at a job I would love...at least for a while.

    My boss at my current job was supportive and said he would work with my schedule to make sure I could do both jobs.

    I'm starting to lean towards not wanting to one look back and say "woulda coulda shoulda". My family is all supportive of me doing it, so long as my kids and fiance are taken care of, and the farm doesn't get neglected.
  11. WaldoNova

    WaldoNova Having fun yet? Supporting Member

    Jun 14, 2009
    Mt Vernon, NY
    Sounds like a great opportunity. You could try it and see if you enjoy it. You might have trouble finding time to sleep and relax. If your boss and your family are supporting you on this then it seems like a no brainer. Go for it. Good for you. If I had this opportunity I would do it in a heartbeat! Especially if the other band members are cool and you get along with them reasonably well.

    Good luck!
  12. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    How old are the kids?
  13. Green Light. It sounds like it’s a done deal - good luck.

    TIP: Don’t party, eat good, and get to bed/sleep.
  14. Once or twice a month was too much?
  15. No amount of money or fancy cars ot house could take me from my kids. When the chips are down, you don't miss your car.

    How old is your car? How old are your kids?

    It sounds like you understand your priorites.
  16. Right now I don't own a good farm truck. We have a full size SUV that we use for all of our family hauling, plus all our farm chores, and its taking its toll on the vehicle big time. I have a little truck that I need to get running so I can drive it to work, and run errands economically, but we have a legitimate need for a full-size pickup truck. Nothing fancy or expensive, but nice enough to haul animals to the sale barn with the kids in the back seat, take the horses on a trail ride, with room in the cab for everyone that's going to ride with us, etc. I also haul hay, and that is NOT something you need to be doing with a Durango.

    My kids are all boys, ages 1, 5, & 6
  17. Someone asked if this was a fulltime on the road gig.

    It is, but its only three days a week, and its focused on the cities in the state we live in. Two of the cities are close enough to my house that the travel would amount to a half hour drive tops. The third city is 3 1/2 hrs away, and sometimes I will be in that city all the days of the work week, and thus away from home 3 nights and 2 1/2 days.
  18. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    OK, here's where I get all up in your business, which is none of my business....... but since you asked.

    "My family is supportive."

    Nope, your fiance is supportive. Your kids have no idea what you are talking about. A 1 year old has no concept of anything you brought up. The 5 & 6 year olds may have said something like "Go for it Daddy" but their attention span is about as long as one episode of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. They aren't supportive of jack squat. They just want their daddy. When you get off the road at 4 billion o'clock in the morning, and they wake up a couple hours later, they are going to want their dad. They don't care that you got to play rock star last night.

    Honestly, with a farm and three young boys at the house, I don't think your fiance has any idea what she has agreed to either. But she is grown. If she agrees to be mom, dad, and farm manager for three days a week then that's on her.

    But your statement about the family being supportive is a metric ton of BS. Those boys haven't agreed to anything. They are too young to enter into the discussion, much less give you the green light to be away from then for days at a time. And when they want their daddy, and you are either on the road or in the bed a high noon, they won't understand.

    You do what you want. But please don't bore us with this being about your family..... or remodeling...... or a car you "need". This is about you. This is about your wanting to take one shot at being a musician. Fair enough. I'm not here to judge. But don't try to lie to us (or yourself) about it. Just be honest with yourself.

    "This is going to suck balls for my kids, and I am dumping a dump truck full of turd in my fiance's lap, but MAN I really just want to try it ONE TIME." THAT is what this is all about. The old "I don't want to be sitting in a rocking chair at 85 wondering what would have happened if I had tried it" routine.

    Best of luck either way.
  19. When I said my family was supportive, I meant my fiance, mom, future father in law, etc. I did talk to the boys about it, they didn't really have an opinion. They weren't against it, but I don't think they fully understood.

    I am considering this gig because of the money. If I wanted to pursue a job as a fulltime musician, I would. I don't expect this gig in particular to last forever. I wasn't looking to hit the road, I've just been looking for another bar band that gigs locally 1-2 times a month. This offer to play for a ton of money (to me) was offered and I wanted to pursue it. I do think it would be fun, I do think it'll be cool to have said I did it. But its also not something I have to do.

    At this point I've not made any commitments to anything, because honestly, I'm not sure if I'm going to do it. Thats why I brought it to talkbass. I wanted to get some feedback from some people who've been there, and done it.
  20. rULE #1..........

    Don't join a band that'll rat you out. Then, all should be smooth sailin' from there.

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