Our kids have two categories that they like to put people in, “Corporate” and “Road Dog”. My wife and kids have spent much of their lives traveling as artists so they feel a sense of pride tagging themselves as “Road Dogs“. I on the other hand have spent the bulk of my life working on the business side of music in marketing and as an artist manager so they tag me as “Corporate”. The big difference in the two is that “Road Dogs” can supposedly adapt to any travel conditions where “Corporates” need a well organized schedule and comfortable place to rest. While I am definitely up for a good “roughing it style” camping trip, I do like to rest well and comfortably while traveling. I normally don’t rest well in the bunk of a tour bus as I’m a bit too claustrophobic and have seen the Metallica bus crash on VH1’s Behind The Music too many times. However, last week I decided to try the “Road Dog” thing for a short run with Circleslide, a band we manage. I figured a short little run to Atlanta in a van couldn’t be that bad?
A mile out of town, I realized I forgot my pillow. Bad start but I wasn’t going to have the band turn around and take me back by the house. That would be a little embarrassing? Turns out that I did fine without my pillow. The trip was different as I wasn’t in control of driving and the stops we made, so I had to regulate myself for food and bathroom breaks. After some adjusting, it actually was kind of nice having a road manager in control of our schedule and someone else driving. Normally, I do all of the planning, driving and thinking when I travel, but now I had this wonderful road manager, Debbie, planning everything. My mind was able to take a break! We played musical trivia with an iPhone while I tested the youngsters knowledge of 80s pop metal. A little Ozzy Osbourne, Metallica, AC/DC, Van Halen, Winger, Bullet Boys, Cinderella, Motley Crue and of course Autograph! We then moved onto Southern Rock trivia with Molly Hatchet, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Blackfoot, 38 Special, and The Outlaws. By this point, I was realizing that “Road Dogging” is quite fun! After the show that evening, came the down side of “Road Dogging” which consisted of load out, leaving the venue at midnight and arriving home at 4am. That pretty much killed my productivity for Monday as I am a man who needs eight hours of good sleep in order to function well.
My conclusion on “Corporate vs. Road Dog” is pretty simple. As a “Road Dog”, you get to turn your brain off while driving down the road and that is actually quite nice. “Road Dogs” have to adapt to a much different time table for sleep but they don’t seem to mind. While I thoroughly enjoyed my “Road Dog” experience , I think the sleep thing and my age will prevent me from ever becoming a permanent “Road Dog”. It’s probably best that I remain “Corporate” for now and leave the “Road Dogging” to the professionals!