BEHIND THE SCENES: WARPED TOUR EDITION (CHRIS JOHNSON)
VEGAS- THIRD DAY OF WARPED TOUR! 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. Let the countdown begin!
Tell us a little about yourself(name, current job title, act)
Chris Jonson, Tour Manager for Matt Toka
Position(s) held when on Warped Tour:
Tour Manager/ FoH
How many summers on Warped?
How did you first get involved with the tour/ any previous experience?
My first warped was with Artist vs. Poet in 2010.
Describe a typical day working the tour:
7am wake up, load in, help set the rest of the stage, grab set times, schedule press, print day sheets, wake band up that’s all before 10:30. From there it’s getting to stage, back lining gear, playing the set, getting to press interviews, checking in on merch, checking on the band, loading gear out, packing the trailer, working on the next day’s day sheet, reviewing merch sales, merch inventory communicating with the driver on the next day’s events etc...
Survival tips for Warped Tour (for both crew and fans):
Water. Beer is tempting for all parties but it dehydrates you. Which means you won't have a good time!
Do’s and don’ts of Warped Tour:
Drink tons of water. Come to support the bands you want to see. And check out artists that you don't know. Mike Posner, Katy Perry were all on this before they were who they are today!
What to wear/not to wear:
Shorts. Tank top/T-shirt and shoes you don't mind getting dirty or throwing away.
Best live performance(s) you have seen at Warped:
Polar Bear Club was my favorite from 2010.
Favorite in years past was Paramore on the Hurley Stage back in like 2008 or something like that.
Best and worst part about working Warped?
The community and diversity on the tour is awesome. You tour with bands and people that you normally wouldn't. It awesome making friends from all different parts of life.
The daily grind is tough. Its a tough tour and not those for the weak of heart. Up early, and going to bed late.
Was it/is it what you thought it would be like?
Favorite city and/or best venue Warped Tour stops in:
Stoked for Vegas stop this year. Had an awesome time on our day off there in 2010 but stoked to play there!
Best place(s) to eat while being out on the tour:
Catering. Those people are the unsung heroes of the tour. They work extremely hard and have a very overlook able position.
Favorite Warped Tour memory/ story/experience:
I can't share those!
Advice for first timers (for both crew and fans):
Be prepared for long day(s). Hot sun and good music.
If someone wanted to work on Warped Tour how would they go about it?
Couple ways: Be in a band, work for a band, work production for warped tour, work for a sponsor.