This past weekend I went on a weekend trip with the husband, or I should say, following the band around. It was a hot, exhausting, and very fun weekend full of great memories and friends. Yes, another weekend trip away, this time with The Husband. I left the kids at home and hit the big city. I am getting the hang of these rush out of work, get the kids set up, and hit the road trips, all the spontaneity has my head reeling. First, up north, now to the west side of the state, maybe one day I will make it out of the state. In all reality, though, the band trips are not always what they are cracked up to be, I finally got a taste of what the guys go through and it wasn’t a walk in the park. There are a lot of stereotypes out there and for all the musician typecasts there are ones for us band wives. It hit me as I was standing in a sweltering line outside of one of the venues, with my ticket in hand when I ran into a friend and they were astounded that I, the wife of the band, would have to stand in lines, let alone buy a ticket. Most people have a very misconstrued idea of what a band wife is. There are so many stereotypes of us, from Yoko to your average groupie. To be honest, they get a little annoying and leave me somewhat self-conscious of how everyone views me and these blogs. I hope to shine light on some of these.
“I’m with the band” is a joke. Sure, we get to go in the back during set up time, carry a guitar case or two, we might not even have to stand in a line, but it is a very rare occasion when they don’t charge the “support staff”. I pay the ten to twenty dollars to get my wristband and get in the door at least every other weekend. We may get dibs on the first tickets but we are paying full price and the bar is no different. Nothing sets us apart from any other fan, and I am OK with that, because for every ticket sold is one step higher they go, for every ten dollars we pay, they get two back. We are not just there for emotional support, we help fund the broken-down RV they just bought and the CD’s that need to be printed. Paying for a ticket beats paying out of pocket for the band needs, because what is his is mine, and what is mine is his and what is ours goes to the band.
“You get to go on tours, sight see, and spend all that travel time with your husband” How about not. Let me walk you through my romantic, touristy weekend with The Husband. First, I rushed to the Friday night show, where after packing up, heading to the store for hotel snacks and drinks, and getting home, our heads hit the pillow around two a.m., six hours of sleep later we were up and ready to hit the road. We arrived at the venue at eleven because that was when they said to be there, which these places are never on time. I don’t know who runs these joints but get it together already! We then were stuck in the parking lot of a strip mall (with, literally, a strip club) waiting, all day. We had an SUV attached to a huge trailer fully loaded with an immense amount of band gear, we were not driving it down town to sight see. They don’t put these rock places near any landmarks, nice parks, or museums, they are on the outskirts, the other side of the tracks, with the strip clubs and the dollar stores. Cities like to hide their riff raff. Thank God for the Five Guys or we would have starved. It was miserably hot all day, I felt sick from the lack of sleep and healthy food (OK, and maybe just a touch of hangover, but I blame all the hotel water I drank that morning). This is touring, it is not glitter and gold, it is hard and tiring. This was only a short trip in state. If anyone thinks I am going on a cross country trip, getting into that busted ass RV with five stinky, sweaty, over partied and under slept dudes for weeks on end you are sorely mistaken, Dear Sir’s. Touring is not a vacation. I really can’t complain (though I just did), I was with The Husband, and as you all know, I will always take what I can get. We were in great company and made some hilarious memories, so the weekend trips I will do again, but I will stay out of the guy’s hair during the long hauls.
The Yoko Effect. I can guarantee that ninety-nine percent of us are not trying to break the band up. I know we can seem a little too involved at times (probably an understatement for me, I tend to get real involved) or we can get a little bitchy from time to time, but it is hard when our only time with them is usually shared with band mates. I know what I am in for but it won’t stop me from whining occasionally about him not being around. We don’t always want to be there but we love them, and when you love someone you want to share all their passions, and when there is music involved their passion is most likely one tracked. It becomes a fight or join scenario. It is very challenging for us to be with someone who is always on the go, and if the only way to get quality time is to follow the band around, damnit all, I will! The person I love the most is in a band, and I want to see him successful, happy, and proud; I want to see the band flourish. I guess you can call me a groupie if you so wish (but only for my husband), but don’t ever call me a Yoko!