Planning for a backpacking trip for leisure takes quite some preparation. Now put in traveling as a musician, and the complexity of planning and executing the trip goes higher.
You not only have to pack everything you need for a normal trip, but you also want to consider carrying your music gear and choosing a destination that will work best for you as a traveling musician.
The idea is not only to travel but also to get your name out there. If you are planning a backpacking trip as a traveling musician and are at a loss for ideas, this guide offers tips for the perfect trip, so keep reading.
Plan Your Trip
A backpacking trip succeeds or flops with planning, so don’t just hit the road. Take your time to think about where you want to go. For example, you could consider the popular music genres in specific regions and plan your trip around towns and cities where your music will get the best reception.
You may also want to consider the cost of traveling and upkeep for the places you intend to visit to see if they fit into your budget.
Another thing to consider is the laws around performing in the places you want to visit. For example, if you are into busking or street performances, you will want to establish where you can do it legally and where you cannot.
Get Packing Essentials
Backpacking means traveling light. So you want to ensure that you choose what to carry carefully. Otherwise, your travel can be a nightmare because of the weight of the stuff you carry.
Don’t overdo clothes; carry only as much as you need. Luckily technology has helped make musical instruments pretty portable. The largest will probably be the guitar, but you can choose a lightweight guitar.
As for a keyboard piano, you can go for a small-sized keyboard that fits in a small bag or a roll-up keypad. A portable audio recorder, laptop and production software are also invaluable when on a backpacking trip for recording music while on the go.
Head to Dream Destinations to Experience Live Music
You only stop growing when you stop learning, and a backpacking trip can also be a great learning moment.
So consider traveling to destinations with a rich musical history from which you can learn. One such destination is Mississippi, the home of delta blues and popular artists like Elvis Presley, Lester Davenport, Charley Pride, and BB Kings.
You can attend live events to experience live music in Mississippi, which would also be an excellent way to learn and grow in the art of live performances and the Mississippi music scene.
Research Performance Opportunities
Researching performance opportunities should be among the first things you do before heading out because the only way to get known is to perform to audiences in the places you visit. But knowing everything before you leave is not always possible, so you can still research performance opportunities once you are at your destination.
The best way to discover such opportunities is by connecting with local musicians at events you attend. You could also use online platforms to connect and find local promoters to help you get performance opportunities.
Sometimes these opportunities may not give back much, especially if you are not as popular. Still, they can be the best opportunities for showcasing what you have to offer and open the door for more rewarding opportunities.
Get the Most Out of Your Trip
You can do many things on a backpacking trip as a traveling musician. But it is up to you to pick what you will and will not do. The best approach is to do everything to get the most out of your trip.
So, you may need to step outside your box. For example, if your preference is live performances, trying out other opportunities that are not on your list of preferences, like busking, would be a great idea. This way, you will have something to do when a live performance opportunity is not forthcoming.
You can also do karaoke and open mics. You never know who will be listening, and it could be your opportunity to showcase what you have to the right person. So grab every opportunity that presents itself and see what comes out of them while enjoying yourself.
Document and Share Your Adventures
You may not have so much of an audience in the places where you travel to. But if you have an audience elsewhere, it would be excellent to take them on your adventure by sharing them on social media platforms.
Luckily you do not need to carry additional gear to document your adventures and performances. Your smartphone is all you need, but if you can, you could invest in a quality compact camera to help you with the documentation.
Video editing software can be an added advantage if you know how to use it. But using one shouldn’t be so difficult. You can learn the basics for free on YouTube, which may be all you need.
Sharing your adventures with other audiences not only helps keep your fans up to date on what you are up to, but it is also a way of making money through your platform.
Prioritize Your Safety and Well Being
Your safety comes first when backpacking, so you may want to identify areas and hours where your safety will be at risk in a given destination so you know the proper steps to take to avoid getting hurt or robbed.
Your well-being is equally important. If you stay on your trips for a long time, you should make plans to ensure you do not compromise your well-being. For example, you will want to pay attention to what you eat.
Go for meals that offer you a balanced diet rather than snacks. You can also consider taking supplements to compensate for what you do not get in food.
Exercises are also quite important. But since you are backpacking, there is a high chance you will do a lot of walking already, which may be enough exercise. If not, fix exercising somewhere in your schedule to ensure you get enough exercise on your trip.