A tour manager is an offshoot of an artist manager they are usually someone completely different from the band manager. In some cases it can be the same person performing dual roles depending on what level the band is at. The primary role of the tour manager is to coordinate the band while they are on tour. They should make sure everything runs smoothly and that the band and the people working with then are happy.
What Does the Role Involve?
A tour manager will get involved with a band once tour dates are in place. In smaller tours the tour manager is usually the same as the band/artist manager. In terms of bigger artists though the tour manager will work alongside managers/agents and promoters to create an Itinerary. They will be responsible for employing any crew (sound, lighting, backline). They will also be in charge of finances on the road and making sure everything is accounted for.
The main responsibilities include booking flights and accommodation, ensuring all needs are met and overseeing any press or promotional activities. Most importantly they work with promoters to make sure the artist gets paid properly and the gigs run as planned. On larger scale tours they can be responsible for sorting out guest lists and dealing with press or media enquiries. They also ensure all the relevant paperwork is completed and any promotional material or merchandise is on display. The tour manager is the first point of contact for everyone while an artist is on tour.
Making Money as a Tour Manager?
If working with a big name artist, a tour manager will be paid a set fee. If it’s a small band the tour manager will be taking a cut of what the band makes from each night.