BEHIND THE SCENES: WARPED TOUR EDITION (MOLLY TORRES)
One more day until Warped Tour officaly starts! Here’s another ‘Warped Tour Edition’ of my series ‘Behind the Scenes’ with a Warped Tour veteran to try to get an idea of what really happens, and what really goes into working this very long, very hot, tour. This will give you some tips on what to wear/ where to eat/ how to get involved with the festival/ the do’s and don’ts of Warped Tour and some bands you should check out while there.
Here is Molly Torres, to give you some great insights to this magnificent summer festival!
Tell us a little about yourself (name, current job title, ect)
Hello, my name is Moly Torres and and in the past I have worked for bands such as We Are The In Crowd, Ramones, Set Your Goals, All Shall Perish and many others. This summer I am stoked to say that I am working for the wonderful Sumerian Records as their Brand Rep!
Position(s) held when on Warped Tour:
2009- Ramones and CBGB- Brand Rep/ Assistant TM (full tour)
2010- Girlz Garage (Sponsor)- Merch girl/ Blogger/ brand Rep (full tour)
2011- Middle Class Rut- Band Merch (5 weeks)
2012- Sumerian Records- TM/ Brand Rep (full tour)
How many summers on Warped?
4 years and counting
How did you first get involved with the tour/ any previous experience?
I started off my touring career from the bottom. I was a Merchie/ TM for a few local bands doing DIY tours in between school breaks. When I turned 21, I sent my one page resume (and short one minute video showing my personality) to Atlantic Records, who was looking for someone to work for the Ramones as a brand rep on Warped. Two hours later I had a job, two weeks after that I was on Warped, and I haven't stopped since!
Describe a typical day working the tour:
As a sponsor the day is a bit different than working in Band World, but not that different. Wake up at 6:30, be out by the trucks at 7, wait for the loaders to pull your gear out of the trucks, grab your tent/ table/ chairs/ boxes could take up to an hour. 8-10 set up, count all your merch, hope that everything runs smoothly so that you can have a little break before doors. Doors at 11. Work. Work. Work. Hustle. Hustle. Hustle. Maybe squeeze in a Band Signing or 2, then at 6-6:30 Count out, break down, pack up. 7 run to the showers to beat the rush! Do all the paper work. Then SLEEEEEP, wake up and do it again.
Survival tips for Warped Tour (for both crew and fans):
DRINK WATER, wear sunblock, and DON'T wear new shoes! Biggest mistake I see is crew/ fans wearing new shoes that they don't break in and blisters on top of blisters! People underestimate how much walking is involved with Warped tour!
Do’s and don’ts of Warped Tour:
Do- Spend time walking around, go see a band you have never heard of. Stay hydrated! Bring sunblock. Go in with a good attitude and with friends with similar music tastes as you!
Don't- QUIT BITCHING! The biggest thing that bums me out is there is always those few groups of friends where I hear the all-out yelling match of "OMG I don’t want see that band" or "Do you HAVE to do that RIGHT NOW" Don't be the negative nancy! You don't want to waste your Warped day because Nancy was in a bad mood! Also, be polite to the Merchies! They are out there working their bums of to make you happy and the least you can do is say Please and Thank You, trust me, to us that means A LOT!
What to wear/not to wear:
DO- Wear something you are comfortable in! Light cottons, shorts, dresses comfortable shoes.
DON'T- Flip Flops! Every day there is that one person sitting on the cement crying because they broke or lost a flip flop during the set and then they have to go the rest of the day barefoot! You wouldn’t believe how many kids I see in Jeans, beanies and hoodies! Warped is not the time to dress in layers, that is a great way to get a one way ticket to the hospital!
Best and worst part about working Warped?
Best- I have worked with a lot of different bands/ crews so warped is like the high school reunion!
Worst- The heat! Arizona- Vegas- Florida are my enemies!
Was it/is it what you thought it would be like?
Far more difficult. It is hard to convey on paper what my summer is really like.
Favorite city and/or best venue Warped Tour stops in:
San Francisco- Nothing like a great hometown venue
Best place(s) to eat while being out on the tour:
On normal tours we Yelp EVERYTHING! That is how you find the hidden gems of each city, whether it is Snooze in Denver, or Melt in Cleveland. Yelp is my best friend!
Favorite Warped Tour memory/ story/experience:
Ditching out on a BBQ with a few of my bus mates to go see LFO play in NYC. We ended up being late to bus call and as our bus was leaving the grounds we had to run and jump in the moving bus, because our bus driver wanted to teach us a lesson. Since that day I have never been late to bus call.
Advice for first timers (for both crew and fans):
Crew- Be genuine. No one cares about whom you know or who you think you know. If you are good person and work hard you will shine like a light house!
Fans- DO EVERYTHING- Get their early, go to the water slides, walk around the sponsor tents (there is always something cool going on!) Crowd surf for the first time, listen to those bands who are hustling the lines (Mayday Parade hustled the lines following Warped, wouldn't you want to hear the next Mayday Parade and be able to say "I remember when..."?!) Warped happens ONCE a year, LIVE IT UP!
If someone wanted to work on Warped Tour how would they go about it?
Know someone. It is all about networking. Keep in mind this is the most coveted tour to be on, and you will be up against season pro. Be persistent and be prepared for lots of "Maybe next year."
If you're going to be on tour this summer, what are you most looking forward to?
Seeing all my friends. I am haven't seen some of these people in 2 years because our tours don't meet up, or we skip their hometown. I just can't wait to hug everyone!
Anything else you’d like to share?
Come say hi to me at the Sumerian Records tent all summer and follow me on twitter (@Molly_Texeira) for all signing info, bands set times and all things Warped!