Tuesday, May 10, 2011

No Paid Sick Days

There are no paid sick days while on tour. In fact, being sick is costly and I figure that the flu has cost me several hundred dollars on this tour.
Rio Grande Gorge in Toas, NM. 
Though this tour has been my best planned and routed tour to date, one can't plan around the potential of getting sick. In a typical job, there is the security that if you get sick that you'll be able to rest and recover at home, while still being able to maintain your budget. This is not the case for a touring musician. The show must go on unless it is absolutely not physically possible, for instance, if their primary instrument is lost. In my case, it is my voice.

I had to cancel two shows, but if I could have, I would have canceled a few more. I ended up performing three shows during the incubation period of the flu, fulfilling  a few three hour performances while my nose was dripping like a faucet and my sinuses were seismic. I was able to pull off the first two shows because my voice was still intact. But the last one was a mistake. I didn't know until I started the performance that my vocal range was down to a few notes and I had to adjust my singing style over the course of the evening to where I was mostly rapping through my songs. While the melody was lost, I wanted to make sure that the lyrics were salvaged at least. A couple of guys came up after that show and told me that they really liked my style. I don't know if they were trying to boost my spirits or what, but they may be disappointed when they listen to the CD that they bought when they find out that I'm not a rapper.

These shows were anchor dates with guarantees that I didn't feel I could miss, especially after I had already driven hundreds of miles and paid a small fortune to the oil companies. I also didn't want to let down the venues who gave me a slot that could have gone to another performer. 

I'm on the upswing I think, and I am planning to be back on track after a couple days of rest.
I jumped the border into Colorado yesterday
Other than this hiccup, the shows have gone very well. Audiences have been very kind and generous. And Ruby continues to  defy planned obsolescence.
Ruby looks brand new after a car wash. Her new solar panel is working
marvelously and has been a topic of conversation wherever we stop. 

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