Rhythm's Top Ten Tips: Gigging In Comfort

Getting your gear through the gig

is important, but what about yourself? Once you get into the moment your body might take a few knocks too. Use these pointers to make sure you get through the show relatively unscathed too!

1. One or two changes of shirts/vests for when you come off stage soaking wet. A warm fleece in the winter is essential.

2. Again, a roll of gaffer tape. It truly has a thousand uses, most of them useful for music.

3. Plastic bags to stash your soaking gear after the gig, locking it in that smelly cocktail of Tobacco smoke and sweat. Saves an unsavoury drive home!

4. Your own personal portable floor fan with a very, very long extension lead.

5. Plain water close to hand but where you can´t knock it over. Investigate the many companies who are selling stand mountable drink holders or simply attach a bicycle style bottle-holder to a stand.

6. A Maglite, one of those small indestructible torches to negotiate dark backstage areas, alleys, car parks etc.

7. Counting in and tempo aids such as Tama´s Rhythm Watch or Yamaha´s ClickStation. And don´t forget spare batteries.

8. Ear plugs. Essential for all but the softest of gigs these days. Your drum store will carry various types and will happily advise you on the wide range available.

9. A basic first-aid kit. And plenty of tissues, wipes… and toilet paper!

10. Directions to the gig. Print a map off of the internet - detailed and free maps cover most places in Europe and the USA. Getting the gig in one piece, and on time means you'll still be in the band to play the next one!

Chris Barnes

I'm MusicRadar's eCommerce Editor. It's my job to manage the buyer's guides on MusicRadar and help musicians find the right gear and the best prices. I'm a guitarist and a drummer and I've worked in the music gear industry for 18 years, including 7 years as Editor of the UK's best-selling drum magazine Rhythm, and 5 years as a freelance writer working with many of the world's biggest musical instrument brands including the likes of Roland, Boss, MusicRadar and Natal.