How To Get Your First Roadie or Concert Technician Job... 20 Replies

Depending on the size of a live concert tour, many "roadies", also known as "techs" or "Concert Technicians"  are employed behind the scenes to produce a successful show. Have you ever gone to a concert and wondered, "how do they get this whole stage set up, and torn down in one day?" Typically, a live concert production arrives at the venue between 7 am and 12 noon and is ready for showtime at 7 pm. After the show, the entire production is loaded back into trucks and is headed off to another…Continue

Tags: tech, drum, guitar, backline, roadie

Started by Roadiejobs in Advice For Aspiring Roadies. Last reply by LK Hunsaker Oct 18, 2009.

Roadie Job Search Ideas... 10 Replies

Here are a few larger companies with areas of their websites dedicated to roadie related jobs such as event production, crew jobs, audo and lighting AV jobs, and cruise ship roadie jobs. These are employment pages where you can browse jobs, and send applications or resumes. AEG LIVE JOB SEARCH - Sports and entertainment promoterCIRQUE DU SOLEIL JOB SEARCH -…Continue

Tags: Roadiejobs, Jobs

Started by Roadiejobs in General Discussion Forum. Last reply by Speedy May 13, 2013.

Can You Describe An Average Day Working As A Roadie In The Concert Touring Industry? 13 Replies

What is your average work day like?Working in the Concert Touring Industry, you probably have one of the most interesting jobs in the world.  Let's hear about yours! Looking forward to your replies!Photo Credit: Mark Shane HatfieldContinue

Tags: Average Work Day, Job Description

Started by Roadiejobs in General Discussion Forum. Last reply by Kyle Simkins Apr 18, 2014.

What was your favorite tour? 35 Replies

Ever wondered who are the best Artists/Bands/Tours to work for?Tell us about the best tour you ever worked,and why it was so great.Looking forward to your replies!Photo Credit: Tim LawrenceContinue

Tags: Great, Favorite, Tour, Best

Started by Roadiejobs in General Discussion Forum. Last reply by david talbott Mar 28, 2014.

Do you prefer being a roadie in the United States Or Europe? 4 Replies

Where Do You Prefer Touring, United States or Europe?What are the main differences?What do you like or dislike about touring in Europe?What do you like or dislike about touring in "The States"?Looking forward to your replies!…Continue

Tags: Touring, United States, USA, Europe

Started by Roadiejobs in General Discussion Forum. Last reply by Travis M. Walat Jan 25, 2013.

What's it like being a roadie on a cruise ship? 30 Replies

Cruise ships employ many people in Music and Touring Industries.Let's hear from those of you who have done this type of work on cruise ships before.Is this something worth looking into?Looking forward to your replies! Continue

Tags: Jobs, , ship, Cruise, , Cruise, Ship"

Started by Roadiejobs in General Discussion Forum. Last reply by Luís Carlos Marciano Jr Aug 15, 2014.

Cruise ships employ many people in Music and Touring Industries.

Let's hear from those of you who have done this type of work on cruise ships before.

Is this something worth looking into?

Looking forward to your replies!


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22 Years before the mast, and let me tell you, the tech has come a long way. Multi-million dollar rigs (LX, sound and automation), venues larger than most touring houses but sadly a lot of inexperienced crew. I have been a production manager for almost 30 years and I can tell you straight; if you want the experience and can get a gig, go for it, but don't expect to be doing the same style of job as you currently do. Audio opps tends to be board opp (if you are lead or head audio), the rest is grunt work. That is also the case for every other position as well. Much of the promotion system is dead mans shoes, or kiss ass, and many of those who finally rise above the crowd are lacking in skills and knowledge.

What you will find varies from cruise line to cruise line, some of them are truly pants, some are better, but none are wonderful. You can find utter crap in terms of gear, to the latest all swinging-all-dancing toys; it all depends on the company. These days how-ever $$ isn't what it used to be in all areas. Lines are not willing to pay for the best talent as some of you can testify to.

In my 10 year tenure for one of the largest lines, they went from multi-million dollar shows to re-hashing old shows into 30 min cabarets 3 times a night, no automation (on some of the most automated stages at sea) a band cut from 24 to 5, a cast from 24 to 10 and a tech crew from 19 to 11. Also, and this is prevalent through a lot of lines; the bull shit is so deep you have to ware you life jack most of the time. 

It's all about image these days; branding is what they call it. If you don't fit the "image" then you must be no good. What they want is some one with a medico skill set, neat and clean, who they don't have to pay much and who will move on asap. Long term employee have expectations, cruise lines in general don't like that. If you like institutionalized living and following "orders" (being creative it totally NOT allowed) then your in luck!. If you are free spirited and like to make artistic and creative contributions, then cruise lines are not the place for you.

I did say 23 years right? Why so long? Well, it's a gig that pays regularly, (when you are working- generally there is no stipend when you are on vacation) and it pays better (at my level- management) than most land jobs. Free travel, free beer (oh you don't get that on most lines) good food (line dependent again) lots of time off (when you've finished your 500hr week). Yes you have to work. It's no vacation for 4-6-9 month, 24/7.

Visit for free info on how to get a job on cruise ships.


Having worked with Steve a number of times on one of the cruise lines he's been associated with, I can tell you everything he has to say is true.

I did eight years, starting out as Stage Crew and winding up as Crew Chief and Automations Operator. I often think about going out again, usually when work on the ground is scarce and I want to make some relatively easy money.

The pros:

  • Firstly, the travel is pretty fantastic. Yes, you're only going to dock in touristy places, nowhere off the beaten track (although not always true), but it's easy to get away from the passengers. I recommend having a bicycle (I just stashed mine backstage).
  • The toys are decent. At least when I left, cruise lines were quite willing to lay down some serious money on equipping their venues. I got to play with some pretty high-end gear. In fact, probably the only chance I might have gotten to cut my teeth on such (there's no venue in my town with a stage and rig like this. Touring concerts, maybe).
  • The pay isn't terrible (but this might have changed). It's not great, for sure. But your expenses are pretty darn low, so it's easy to put money away.

The cons:

  • Professional growth is limited. It's routine. It's corporate. It's not demanding (except of your patience).
  • It's hardly conducive to a family life. I got off ships because I'd learnt as much as I could (see above) and because I wanted to continue to grow professionally. But also because I wanted to work on my personal relationships. It's hard on you and your partner when you're away for six months plus at a time. I also found it frequently lonely.
  • It's not just a theatre tech gig. All the other bullshit that comes along with working on a cruise ship is what makes the job less enjoyable. I could rant on for pages, but it's not worth it.

Like said elsewhere, ships aren't for everyone.

I worked Barge To Hell metal cruise with 40 metal bands on 4 stages on Royal. Then hot hired by Sixthman to stage Manage on the Bluegrass Cruise and on Mike Portnoys Progressive Nation at Sea on the Norwegian Pearl. Awesome experience of a lifetime. Support staff is the best in the business. We get Paid to go on Vacation!! Looking forward to working more shortly..Think Kiss cruise is next and I have 70k tons of metal cruise in January. I recommend any music cruise.

I went thru the process and got a job for Norwegian about 10 years ago. Position was A1 , essentially was to set up and operate for a jazz lunch band then do the same for dinner. I accepted and when I got the package of paperwork dictating all the terms I was to agree to, I had to turn it down. Some items I could not agree to was 'no fraternizing with the guests'. being 30 and single on a ship for months at a time and only working 6 to 8 hrs a day, sure leaves a person with a lot of want.

The pay was  1400 a month. And the biggest one for me was they kept the right to leave me at any port for infractions if I were to be fired, and I would have to find my own way home. So I knew I would break the fraternizing rule and could not risk having to buy my own plane ticket from Spain or where ever they left me!!

The "no fraternizing with quest role" is instated on all cruise companies because a majority of the time guest will make it a goal to seduce a crew member and then later turn around and claim rape. May I remind you that it states "with guest" not crew members. To think that a cruise company would say no relations at all is crazy, its a living not the militarily and people know that everyone has needs so you should be able to engage in relations with crew members.

So unless you are a sex-aholic and force yourself on others that don't want it. i doubt you would get fired from the job because of doing what the normal population of cruise ship employees do (consensual relations among crew member)

However I do agree with you the pay is quite low when working for cruise lines and most of the time you have to share a cabin. So rather than saying you turned down a job because you can't have sex with people may not be the smartest thing to post on a forum. Next time you should mention the more appropriate difficulties like pay, sharing a cabin, the other untold responsibilities such as boat drill and helping out on the sports deck. how your job is 20% of your technical skills and 80% of hotel hospitality or the fact that you have to remain clean shaven all the time.

Im a sound n light tech at msc cruises. Now im onboard. Doing mediterrean season. Its good. Job is easy mostly operating mixers and mics. Some maintenance of course but its easy also.


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