Feature by: Mark Steinwachs
Feature & gallery photos courtesy of Brent Baxter Photography & img stock
Video courtesy of WillieNelsonVEVO

Mark Steinwachs spent 12 years on the road touring with all forms of music and theater acts and is now the General Manager at Bandit Lites, an industry leader in concert lighting production.

Living on the road, be it on a tour bus, a van, or flying from country to country in Europe, can become a chore. It’s easy to slip into numb traveler mode and block out the world around you, only focusing on the little nitpicky things that go wrong. Let me give you a bit of advice, stop it.

You are one of the select few in this great big world. Take a minute, look around, enjoy it.

You may be asking yourself, what the hell is Mark talking about now? How can I enjoy truck stops and bumper to bumper traffic in New York City? How can I enjoy airport security lines? The answer to those things is you really can’t, but don’t focus on that. Think about what having to deal with those things leads to.

Truck stops, yeah, those really aren’t fun. But they are just waypoints between a blue-skied Sunday morning drive through the Rockies or the Pacific Northwest. Gorgeous. And not only the view, the time spent with your driver and other tour mates outside the stress of a show are some of the best memories you will have from touring.

Airport security, ughhhhh, no one likes that. But watching the world go by from 30,000 feet is pretty damn awesome if you stop and think about it. Flying over natural wonders, massive cities, and thousands of miles of ocean is a thing most touring people take for granted. Not everyone does that stuff on a regular basis.

New York City traffic? Okay, that just sucks. So does Toronto, LA, Chicago, Atlanta, and numerous other cities. But once the bus or van or shuttle parks in front of the hotel, your day is what you make of it. Explore if you want to or just find a place around the corner and relax. Experience something, even if it’s a little thing.

What are a few other things you can enjoy?

People watching at a show is fantastic. I highly recommend it.

Hanging out, grilling burgers and dogs around the buses on a Roadie Friday (that’s any day going into a day off) and laughing about bullshit and dumbshit are moments most people will never get.

A good book, a good smoke, a good beer, or a good chat while on a day off.

The randomness that is life. You never know who you will run into, that place you will find, or the person you will meet.

I’ve stopped myself and enjoyed all of those moments numerous times. I’ve also shut myself off and missed hundreds more. It’s okay to shut down now and again, but unless you really need to, get out there and enjoy what your career has given you the chance to do.

Now, why are you reading this? Get out there. Go!

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