Routes, routes, routes

After last night’s tour, it occurred to me that I haven’t run the same tour twice in months.

Back in the old days, when we worked for a different company, the route was like clockwork – the same stops in the same order, with the same between-stop banter and jokes, and very little variation from night to night.

Nowadays, we don’t have a route so much as a repertoire – there are a few places we hit just about every tour, but nowhere that we hit 100% of the time. Putting together is route is like deciding which songs to play at a rock concert that night. You want to throw in some hits, but you can also bring back an old favorite, introduce some new material, and try something that someone in the audience requests.

Of course, it’s a bit different: with a setlist, you really just have to worry about the rhythm and flow. We have to take that into account in tours, too, but we also have to worry about the traffic, the distance between stops, etc. We even try to take into account which “haunted” spots have seemed active or inactive lately. It’s almost like putting a puzzle together, really. But it sure helps keep things fresh!