We Need to Address the Roadie Shortage -- And Soon

Today's read ...  6️⃣ minutes

Headliner Michael Hendrix is listening to Summer Dresses by R.M Hendrix

Red Rocks prepares to open this month, Eric Church begs you to take shots with him, and our Headliner explains how musicians have always been the leaders for reinvention PLUS gives readers the chance to win his new book!

You’ve got to get needles in arms.” Eric Church is using his platform to help motivate music fans to get vaccinated.

Now that events are finding their way back, all unemployed workers are ready to go, right? Maybe not. Some roadies have changed their professional paths, potentially leaving the industry at a shortage.

The sponsorship and branding department of Danny Wimmer Presents is breaking off into its own standalone business called BrandMark Agency led by DWP’s Executive Vice President, Maureen Valker-Barlow.

Dead & Company and CID Presents are ready for more Playing in the Sand as their event is slated to return January 13-16 of 2022 at Moon Palace Resort in Cancún, Mexico. They are working with sustainability company, REVERB to make the event entirely climate-positive.

Having cancelled their 2021 event, Glastonbury organizers have planned a livestream event called Worthy Farm Live for May 22 which will feature Coldplay, HAIM, Wolf Alice, and more. Tickets are on sale now.

Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre will open at the end of April at a reduced capacity of 2,500 people.

California will allow indoor gatherings, including concerts, to return April 15 with limited capacity. See the breakdown of COVID-19 limitations for different types of events.

Live Nation’s stock price reached an all-time high this year, despite the huge losses from a year without live music. Read why the biggest live music promoter is still on the rise.

France entered its third nationwide lockdown following the increase in COVID-19 infections, but Disneyland Paris is hoping to help by opening as a vaccination site.

Dust off your pilgrim cosplay. Comic-Con will be returning in-person for a “Special Edition” Thanksgiving weekend, despite the cancellation of their July event.

Lineups, Confirmations, and Hopes for the Summer

  • Bonnaroo scheduled for September 2-5, 2021 just announced their lineup featuring Tyler, The Creator, Foo Fighters, and the festival’s first female headliner, Lizzo. Megan Thee Stallion, Lana Del Rey, and Tame Impala are among the other acts on the impressive list to take the stage on the Farm. 

  • Typically taking place in June, Delaware's Firefly Music Festival will run September 23-26th of this year instead.

  • On the West Coast, the Hard Summer festival announced their lineup for their event on July 31 and August 1 of this year. Future, 2 Chainz and Dillon Francis are among those to perform.

  • Primavera Weekender, by the same organizers of Primavera Sound, will take place this November with tickets on-sale today (April 6) and a lineup to come soon.

  • At Fort Lauderdale Beach Park, Tortuga Music Festival will take place on November 12-14 this year and will feature Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Tim McGraw, and more.

COVID-19 Safety Announcement

  • Reading and Leeds Festival organizer believes that some sort of COVID-19 vaccine passport or proof of negative test will be required for entry to the event, but cannot officially announce safety precautions for the event at this time.


  • Hours before attendees were supposed to arrive, the Byron Bay Bluesfest canceled their 2021 event scheduled for April 1-5 out of fear of a COVID-19 outbreak. Organizers say they are working to reschedule the event for a later date this year.

  • The Winnipeg Folk Festival announced the cancellation of their 2021 event, but might hold smaller, in-person events in August.

The Test of Rapid Testing -- Is it Reliable?

Spain is finding their road to recovery following the 5,000 person test concert using rapid testing. Gustavo Dudamel conducted a Bavarian State Opera production of Verdi’s “Otello” at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona for 1,000 attendees. Everyone arrived at staggering times, was temperature checked, wore masks, and was not offered any refreshments or physical programs. However, rapid testing does not seem like the answer for others. New Zealand, with its limited community transmission, is not utilizing the same procedures. 

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Michael Hendrix is a designer, author and musician. His gigs include Global Design Director at IDEO, professor at Berklee College of Music, co-founder of the Open Music Initiative, and co-author of TWO BEATS AHEAD—What Musical Minds Teach Us About Innovation.

Role Models of Reinvention: How Musicians Lead the WayOver the past several years I’ve interviewed artists, producers and managers for my book, Two Beats Ahead: What Musical Minds Teach Us About Innovation. While Grohl’s story of resilience is exceptional, it’s certainly not the exception. I’ve learned first hand that musicians, and the music industry, are role models for reinvention. Sometimes this constant change is a choice. Think: Miles Davis, David Bowie, or Lady GaGa. And sometimes the change is forced upon us. Think Gloria Estefan’s bus accident or Dave Grohl breaking his leg. Or perhaps you’re thinking of yourself during this pandemic. Whatever your mental model, I’m certain it’s a story of trial and success. Why? Because that has been the story of this industry. 

CDs didn’t kill music. Naptster didn’t kill music. Spotify didn’t kill music. COVID won’t kill music. The well-honed creativity that writes the songs and plays the songs, is the same creativity that drives the industry to adapt and overcome. We each have this gift inside.

Dave Grohl is better: 


58% of BOH readers' favorite festival go to is a fannypack or backpack. 

▶️  Bandsintown PLUS is looking for a full-time, remote Marketing Account Manager to lead strategic planning and execution of a portfolio of artist-driven, direct-to-fan marketing campaigns for upcoming shows.▶️  Apply to be SeatGeek’s Customer Service Event Expert in Portland, Oregon.▶️  Go West Creative is seeking a Producer and a Senior Producer in Nashville.

▶️  Locker Room, a Clubhouse competitor app, has just been acquired by Spotify.▶️  Consequence of Sound is having a “Protect Live Music” livestream benefiting independent music venues in their ongoing recovery efforts.▶️  Let’s head to the merch table! Check out these 25 creative ideas for band merch.

April 12: Music Business Association is holding a webinar on The Shape of Business to Come, a roundtable discussion on how COVID-19 has affected the industry.April 15: Join us for Back of House’s Festival ALL CALL on Clubhouse as we dive deep into what it actually takes to mitigate COVID on-site at events.April 22: The Sustainable Events Forum is hosting an Earth Day for Event people. Join your fellow event professionals for a celebration of the beauty and diversity of the destinations in Canada where we host our events. April 27: The Vendry presents the Future of Event Marketing, a conversation about how they're looking forward to the opportunities ahead in a post-pandemic world.April 28: The Event App Bible LIVE. Ask experts what you should consider when investing in events apps for your upcoming events, how senior planners are thinking about event apps in 2021 and beyond, and which hot features really make a difference and what’s on the top providers’ roadmap.  

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