We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What does a Roadie do?

By Kathy Hawkins
Updated May 23, 2024
Our promise to you
Musical Expert is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At Musical Expert, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The term "roadie" is a nickname for "road crew." This person is a technician who travels on tour with a band, and the term can refer to a wide variety of job titles. Guitar techs, bass techs, drum techs, lighting techs, and stage managers, among others, are all part of the category. The roadie serves an essential purpose, and does his or her job to ensure that the band will be able to play at the venue with proper sound and lighting.

A roadie who deals with instruments is generally a musician as well. In some cases, an individual will work on the road crew for a band, while also serving as the main band's opening act. In some cases, he or she may go on to become a successful musician in his own right. This was the case for Noel Gallagher, who was a roadie for the band Inspiral Carpets before rising to fame in Oasis.

Most people get a job touring with a band either by being a friend of the band's, or by gaining experience working behind the scenes at a theater company or with a production company. People can also gain experience by getting a low-level job at a music venue, and working their way up.

Though many people think that the life of a roadie is glamorous because he or she is touring with a well-known band, the job generally consists of a lot of hard work, and, in many cases, the band members never directly talk to the crew. The road crew generally travels in a separate tour bus from the band members. However, in some cases, roadies become friends with band members, and are acknowledged in CD liner notes and elsewhere.

In 1980, the singer Meat Loaf starred in a movie called Roadie, in which he played a roadie from Texas on tour with a rock band. A former crew member named Karl Kuenning, who has worked with more than 200 bands, including Elvis Costello, BB King, and the Talking Heads, has published a book called Roadie: A True Story (At Least the Parts I Remember), which features his confessions of living on the road.

Musical Expert is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By Sequoia — On May 08, 2011

@roser - For the majority of people, probably the latter. Especially if you're just starting out, being the tech guy at the local bar I imagine you'd probably get paid very little, but at least you'd learn the ropes over time. My dad did it for a while mainly because he was interested in it, not for the money. I think the only way you could make a living off it is if you scored a gig with a famous touring band which would only happen after years of experience, but nothing's impossible. Then you'd have to live on the road most of the time, but that lifestyle suits some people.

Interesting anecdote about Noel Gallagher originally being a roadie, I had no idea. It's probably beneficial for musicians to learn all of the behind the scenes stuff for when they put on their own shows.

By roser — On May 08, 2011

Seems like it'd probably be a tough job to break into, but I wonder how much you get paid? Or is it just one of those jobs you'd only do if you really loved it?

Musical Expert, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

Musical Expert, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.