Set to “Mistress Addiction” Prophets Of Addiction
The following blog contains what I feel are some helpful tips for setting up a tour
The 2011 UK / Italy Prophets Of Addiction Tour went off as a huge success. Of course there were numerous problems along the way, but it is the way you work through the problems that matter in the end. The tour was mostly arranged by me and most logistics were done on my end as well. Because of my past in the music business and connections I took these duties on. In the following paragraphs I will break down the steps leading up to and finalizing the tour.
The first step was to confirm the dates that we would be supporting 80′s Sunset Strip legends LA GUNS, now this wasn’t always easy because of the politics involved there was more to it than asking some old friends to be on the shows. There was to be a local area band that would provide LA GUNS with their back line (equipment) that band ended up being Damn Dice from London, a great group of guys. So now there are already two bands on the bill before we even get started. So at this point I am in contact with LA GUNS both on a personal level and through their agent ARM Entertainment. They say its all good however now I have to deal with and get into contact with the different venues and promoters which is not always all that easy. So here I am grinding away waiting for responses sending electronic press kits, doing Google searches basically not giving up until I find a contact for the venues in name. After it was all said and done some of the venues already had a local band they wanted on the bill which I understand. They already are familiar with that band and know how many people that band may draw and a local band is always good to help (if they are doing their job) with promotion, so yes I get it. There were several venues very receptive of us playing and because of my past that helped as well. So when it was all said and done we had five tour dates with LA GUNS and a lot of holes to fill on the tour.
So next I had to try and find venues / promoters to fill the remaining dates all the while trying to calculate a time frame to let the promoters in Italy know what dates will fit our schedule. I had a commitment from the Italian promoter for a while it was just a matter of time until we could make it fit into a schedule. So from there I did everything in my imagination contacting people from the past, asking friends and fans and basically sending out hundreds of emails. The thing is you cannot send one email and wait for a response you have to be on top of it just “grinding” these people to get results definitely not a task for the meek. So after countless hours hundreds of emails I managed to fill most of the dates available. The guarantees were of different prices some shows we negotiated hotels into our contract but the bottom line is when you are out there you have to keep playing. Now everything has to make sense as well as far as routing goes( not always easy and usually impossible) as to the best of your capabilities.
Once the tour dates are set this is the perfect time to approach manufactures for endorsement deals. At this point a band from the USA touring Europe makes you look legit, it creates a perception that something is going on for the band, and in reality it is. So what I did was type up a great letter with all of the pertinent information on the band along with tour dates and the electronic Press Kit and sent it to everyone that I would be interested in endorsing. Again this is something that you need to keep on and sending many emails, making phone calls is even a better way to break the ice with the company’s A&R person ( the company’s “Artist Representative”). Remember you are selling your band to them and it is what you have to offer them that will determine what they will offer you. Basically the higher profile situations you will be in gives them a higher profile situation for the said company to get their name out to would be fans, musicians and in more print situations.
Once I secured endorsements for the tour I had that big problem of equipment out of the way. Orange Amplification supplied us with an endorsement deal therefore taking the cost of shipping gear overseas or renting once we arrived not necessary. I can not say enough nice things about the A&R for Orange Amplification and those amps sound AMAZING. Remember any cost cutting and proper planning will allow a band to stay on the road not just for the current tour but the future as well. Extravagant spending is just asking for trouble and more unwanted stress in the end.
Next was to hire ground transportation so once again, emails to friends etc. This ended up being real easy a really cool guy named Mikey with a rental co. Ferox Van Hire…. Great guy great rates.
Flights were next once everything was confirmed, no big secret here shop around.. Just wondering were you all aware of this? A flight for example right now to the UK is $800 – $1,000…. However only like $265 is the cost of the ticket the rest is all taxes & fees now that seems a bit crazy…No wonder the airlines are broke, costs to much to travel and they only make a ¼ of what the ticket costs and that is before you calculate their costs to operate.
Passports: of course every member of the traveling party will need a valid passport.
Work visa’s…… You must always check with the countries you will be entering what their requirements are to come into their country to perform. An easy way to do this is by asking the promoters or checking the said countries website. In our case we had to get work visa’s to enter the UK and the way you do this is by having one of the venues or promoters “sponsor you” In our case I contacted the London venue The Underworld and they helped out with all the paperwork however it did cost us 250 GBP. But this assures no problems or setbacks when entering a foreign country. A work visa to enter Italy was not necessary however.
And this is all before hitting a note or promoting…..The bottom line is they key is to not give up the more messages, calls etc. the more you increase your odds at something happening for you. You may send out 50 emails and only one is returned and actually works out for you consider that a success. Also consider this if you sent out only 10, would the one that worked for you be one of those 10? No way to know so yes it is a numbers game.
The Prophets Of Addiction Tour was a great success, did what we needed to do to open up more doors for the future. The reception we received from the fans, industry and the press was overwhelming. I want to give a big thanks to everyone and anyone that was there for us both abroad and rooting for us back in the USA. THANK YOU to you all.
Made it home after hours on a plane or in an airport…First we flied from
Venice to Rome, Italy with like a 4 hour layover, Then off to London where we waited for 8 hours to fly into Chicago and then go through customs then wait 4 hours to fly back into Seattle. Had to through customs at each airport and or security….I am glad the flying is over. We had an amazing time and I will have a re-cap up soon after I rest a day or two and collect my thoughts…Thanks for reading.
Well the tour is done and I will be doing a whole tour wrap up coming soon on the blog. Now just a lot of flying to do. For today I have a little business to take care of here in Italy before we fly out tonight back to London and then back home after a 6 hour wait at London’s Heathrow Airport. I will be meeting with promoters and doing some press. This whole tour has been a wonderful and productive experience. Thanks to everyone that helped along the way. I got the chance to meet so many cool people both business wise and fans. I had the opportunity to see so many cool places and learn some history of these foreign countries that is nothing like i could have learned out of a book. The stories of the history told to me directly by the people that have lived here their whole lives. Once again thanks to everyone….I will see you all real soon. And for those back home I’m on my way.
Last night we did our last show in Italy…. At a place called the Haiti Bar we did an acoustic set followed by myself playing a solo set of songs that I have as well. The place was packed and very appreciative, we were very well taken care of by the staff they kept bringing out the food and drinks all day and night. Again the main purpose of the show there was that the owner puts on a huge festival in the summer months and it was more of a showcase. Again we passed with flying colors. He and everyone there was very impressed with our music, sound and professionalism. In this day and age the promoters are not wanting to deal with bands that are a bunch of fuck-ups those days are long gone. As with the entire trip there was a master plan set forth and we executed with skill and determination it is only up from here.
Outside the Haiti Bar, this place was small but very cool…with fog machines and laser lights throughout. The crowd as seen would pour out onto the streets in front as you are allowed to drink publicly on the streets here in Italy.
This bar and many places in Italy come complete with one of these to go to the bathroom in…. And you have to use this for whatever form of relief you my need so what I am trying to say is, its not so bad when you have to take a leak but when you gotta S**T be very careful and aim well…..Good luck
A shot from inside the Haiti Bar during our acoustic set. Actually something that is pretty popular here and in some other European countries, so if you have a band and are looking to fill some off days never hesitate to put together an acoustic set to keep you working, fed and a place to stay…
There I am with the Tower of Pisa…. Amazing….. This whole trip and seeing everything I have seen and the different cultures I have experienced has just been an amazing addition to my life. Something I will never forget and to say I did it all while performing music is just a blessing.
More photos….I am not going to say anything words mean nothing just asorb the beauty.
Just hangin’ in Pisa
Another shot I took just look in awe as i did. Here is some history:
The Leaning Tower of Pisa (Italian: Torre pendente di Pisa) or simply the Tower of Pisa (Torre di Pisa) is the campanile, or freestanding bell tower, of the cathedral of the Italian city of Pisa. It is situated behind the Cathedral and is the third oldest structure in Pisa’s Cathedral Square (Piazza del Duomo) after the Cathedral and the Baptistry.
The height of the tower is 55.86 m (183.27 ft) from the ground on the low side and 56.70 m (186.02 ft) on the high side. The width of the walls at the base is 4.09 m (13.42 ft) and at the top 2.48 m (8.14 ft). Its weight is estimated at 14,500 metric tons (16,000 short tons). The tower has 296 or 294 steps; the seventh floor has two fewer steps on the north-facing staircase. Prior to restoration work performed between 1990 and 2001, the tower leaned at an angle of 5.5 degrees, but the tower now leans at about 3.99 degrees. This means that the top of the tower is displaced horizontally 3.9 metres (12 ft 10 in) from where it would be if the structure were perfectly vertical.
Construction of the tower occurred in three stages across 177 years. Work on the ground floor of the white marble campanile began on August 8, 1173, during a period of military success and prosperity. This ground floor is a blind arcade articulated by engaged columns with classical Corinthian capitals.
The tower began to sink after construction had progressed to the second floor in 1178. This was due to a mere three-metre foundation, set in weak, unstable subsoil, a design that was flawed from the beginning. Construction was subsequently halted for almost a century, because the Republic of Pisa was almost continually engaged in battles with Genoa, Lucca and Florence. This allowed time for the underlying soil to settle. Otherwise, the tower would almost certainly have toppled. In 1198 clocks were temporarily installed on the third floor of the unfinished construction.
In 1272 construction resumed under Giovanni di Simone, architect of the Camposanto. In an effort to compensate for the tilt, the engineers built upper floors with one side taller than the other. Because of this, the tower is actually curved. Construction was halted again in 1284, when the Pisans were defeated by the Genoans in the Battle of Meloria.
The seventh floor was completed in 1319. It was built by Tommaso di Andrea Pisano, who succeeded in harmonizing the Gothic elements of the bell-chamber with the Romanesque style of the tower. There are seven bells, one for each note of the musical major scale. The largest one was installed in 1655. The bell-chamber was finally added in 1372.
After a phase (1990–2001) of structural strengthening, the tower is currently undergoing gradual surface restoration, in order to repair visual damage, mostly corrosion and blackening. These are particularly pronounced due to the tower’s age and its exposure to wind and rain.
- On January 5, 1172, Donna Berta di Bernardo, a widow and resident of the house of dell’Opera di Santa Maria, bequeathed sixty soldi to the Opera Campanilis petrarum Sancte Marie. The sum was then used toward the purchase of a few stones which still form the base of the bell tower.
- On August 9, 1173, the foundations of the Tower were laid.
- Nearly four centuries later Giorgio Vasari wrote : “Guglielmo, according to what is being said, in [this] year 1174 with Bonanno as sculptor, laid the foundations of the belltower of the cathedral in Pisa.”
- Another possible builder is Gerardo di Gerardo. His name appears as a witness to the above legacy of Berta di Bernardo as “Master Gerardo”, and as a worker whose name was Gerardo.
- A more probable builder is Diotisalvi, because of the construction period and the structure’s affinities with other buildings in Pisa. But he usually signed his works, and there is no signature by him in the belltower.
- Giovanni di Simone was heavily involved in the completion of the tower, under the direction of Giovanni Pisano, who at the time was master builder of the Opera di Santa Maria Maggiore. He could be the same Giovanni Pisano who completed the belfry tower.
- Giorgio Vasari indicates that Tommaso di Andrea Pisano was the designer of the belfry between 1360 and 1370.
- On December 27, 1233, the worker Benenato, son of Gerardo Bottici, oversaw the continuation of the construction of the belltower.
- On February 23, 1260, Guido Speziale, son of Giovanni, a worker on the cathedral Santa Maria Maggiore, was elected to oversee the building of the Tower.
- On April 12, 1264, the master builder Giovanni di Simone and 23 workers went to the mountains close to Pisa to cut marble. The cut stones were given to Rainaldo Speziale, worker of St. Francesco.
There has been controversy about the real identity of the architect of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. For many years, the design was attributed to Guglielmo and Bonanno Pisano, a well-known 12th-century resident artist of Pisa, famous for his bronze casting, particularly in the Pisa Duomo. Bonanno Pisano left Pisa in 1185 for Monreale, Sicily, only to come back and die in his home town. A piece of cast with his name was discovered at the foot of the tower in 1820, but this may be related to the bronze door in the façade of the cathedral that was destroyed in 1595. However recent studies seem to indicate Diotisalvi as the original architect due to the time of construction and affinity with other Diotisalvi works, notably the bell tower of San Nicola and the Baptistery, both in Pisa. However, he usually signed his works and there is no signature by him in the bell tower which leads to further speculation.
History following construction
Galileo Galilei is said to have dropped two cannon balls of different masses from the tower to demonstrate that their speed of descent was independent of their mass. However, this is considered an apocryphal tale, its only source being Galileo’s secretary.
During World War II, the Allies discovered that the Germans were using the tower as an observation post. A U.S. Army sergeant was briefly entrusted with the fate of the tower and his decision not to call in an artillery strike kept the tower from being destroyed.
On February 27, 1964, the government of Italy requested aid in preventing the tower from toppling. It was, however, considered important to retain the current tilt, due to the vital role that this element played in promoting the tourism industry of Pisa.
A multinational task force of engineers, mathematicians and historians gathered on the Azores islands to discuss stabilisation methods. It was found that the tilt was increasing in combination with the softer foundations on the lower side. Many methods were proposed to stabilise the tower, including the addition of 800 tonnes of lead counterweights to the raised end of the base.
On January 7, 1990, after over two decades of stabilisation studies, the tower was closed to the public. The bells were removed to relieve some weight, and cables were cinched around the third level and anchored several hundred meters away. Apartments and houses in the path of the tower were vacated for safety. The final solution to prevent the collapse of the tower was to slightly straighten the tower to a safer angle, by removing 38 cubic meters (50 cubic yards) of soil from underneath the raised end. The tower was straightened by 45 centimeters (18 inches), returning to its 1838 position. After a decade of corrective reconstruction and stabilization efforts, the tower was reopened to the public on December 15, 2001, and was declared stable for at least another 300 years.
In May 2008, after the removal of another 70 metric tons (77 short tons) of ground, engineers announced that the Tower had been stabilized such that it had stopped moving for the first time in its history. They stated it would be stable for at least 200 years.
Two German churches have challenged the tower’s status as the world’s most lop-sided building: the 15th-century square Leaning Tower of Suurhusen and the 14th century bell tower in the town of Bad Frankenhausen. Guinness World Records measured the Pisa and Suurhusen towers, finding the former’s tilt to be 3.97 degrees. In June 2010 Guinness World Records certified the Capital Gate building in Abu Dhabi, UAE as the “World’s Furthest Leaning Man-made Tower”. The Capital Gate tower has an 18-degree slope, almost five times more than the Pisa Tower; however the Capital Gate tower has been deliberately engineered to slant. The Leaning Tower of Wanaka in New Zealand, also deliberately built, leans at 53 degrees to the ground.
An elevation image of the Leaning Tower of Pisa cut with laser scan data from a University of Ferrara/CyArk research partnership, with source image accurate down to 5mm. This elevation shows the interesting quandary facing the campanile. The circular shape and great height (currently 55.86 m on the lowest side and 56.70 m on the highest) of the campanile were unusual for their time, and the crowning belfry is stylistically distinct from the rest of the construction. This belfry incorporates a 14 centimeter correction for the inclined axis below. The siting of the campanile within the Piazza del Duomo diverges from the axial alignment of the cathedral and baptistery of the Piazza del Duomo
- Elevation of Piazza del Duomo: about 2 metres (6 feet, DMS)
- Height from the ground floor: 55.863 metres (183 ft 3 in), 8 stories
- Height from the foundation floor: 58.36 metres (191 ft 47 in)
- Outer diameter of base: 15.484 metres (50 ft 9.6 in)
- Inner diameter of base: 7.368 metres (24 ft 2.1 in)
- Angle of slant: 3.97 degrees or 3.9 metres (12 ft 10 in) from the vertical
- Weight: 14,700 metric tons (16,200 short tons)
- Thickness of walls at the base: 2.4 metres (7 ft 10 in)
- Total number of bells: 7, tuned to musical scale, clockwise
- 1st bell: L’Assunta, cast in 1654 by Giovanni Pietro Orlandi, weight 3,620 kg (7,981 lb)
- 2nd bell: Il Crocifisso, cast in 1572 by Vincenzo Possenti, weight 2,462 kg (5,428 lb)
- 3rd bell: San Ranieri, cast in 1719–1721 by Giovanni Andrea Moreni, weight 1,448 kg (3,192 lb)
- 4th bell: La Terza (1st small one), cast in 1473, weight 300 kg (661 lb)
- 5th bell: La Pasquereccia or La Giustizia, cast in 1262 by Lotteringo, weight 1,014 kg (2,235 lb)
- 6th bell: Il Vespruccio (2nd small one), cast in the 14th century and again in 1501 by Nicola di Jacopo, weight 1,000 kg (2,205 lb)
- 7th bell: Dal Pozzo, cast in 1606 and again in 2004, weight 652 kg (1,437 lb)
- Number of steps to the top: 296
About the 5th bell: The name Pasquareccia comes from Easter, because it used to ring on Easter day. However, this bell is older than the bell-chamber itself, and comes from the tower Vergata in Palazzo Pretorio in Pisa, where it was called La Giustizia (The Justice). The bell was tolled to announce executions of criminals and traitors, including Count Ugolino in 1289. A new bell was installed in the belltower at the end of the 18th century to replace the broken Pasquareccia.
Last night we rocked the Blue Rose in
Milan, Italy (here they pronounce it Milano) another great show. I
have not had much access to the internet the past few days so the
updates are a little hard to post the hotel we are at is experiencing
trouble with the WI-Fi. Let’s get back to the show tonight… a
crowded room with great response and as to keep to our plan we
showcased for some more festival promoters and again they loved us. I
would like to say thanks to the guys in the band for another job well
done. Some of the gear tonight was not the greatest (it sucked) but
we stayed professional and did what we had to to overcome the
obstacles and put on a great performance anyway. Tomorrow we play in
Pisa so I hope we rock so hard that we straighten that tower….Talk
at ya soon.
There is the front entrance to the Blue Rose in Milan…A very cool little punk rock type club. http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=1467717606 The owner was very cool and took care of us well plenty of food…I went back to the hotel early but evidently the owner took great care of the guys keeping the drinks flowing until all hours. Tonight was great I had my own hotel room while the others shared. Just what I needed to rest my voice and get a little time to myself…That’s my modern day party these days..What an old man I have become. They tell me that is being professional.. Without rest and proper diet and plenty of water you can not perform up to your potential… Works for me these days and I am loving it…