FROM A TO B
How I travel from one place to the other.
In an old Volkswagen and with some luck!
Almost the easiest way to travel as a modern Troubadour.
Often people ask me, when I tell them that I am homeless: "Do you have a camper or a bus?" And then I start to explain how I travel till now and why I still use my old Volkswagen.
We, musicians, have to travel. By train, car, touring bus, plane, bike or just walking. No matter if you are The Rolling Stones or a solo folk musician, we have to be on the road; today we play here and tomorrow we have to be hundreds of kilometers further for the next gig. So one way or another we have to see that we arrive in time at our next location. The show must go on and people are looking forward to see us on stage. Hear our music!
How I do it!
I discovered that travelling by car is for me the only way how I can fix my tours and how I can survive as a musician. I know musicians who use the train, or have someone who brings them to the gig. In my case it is clear that I use my own car for it. And I have several reasons for it:
- First of all because I have to take all my music equipment with me to do the gigs. Guitars, sound system, CD's, posters, mic stands, amp, power cables, etc.
- I travel often for a week or longer and use then regular my tents for overnight stays. So I am full equipped to camp for days or weeks. What means that I have not only tents but also sleeping bags, kitchen stuff and food with me.
- With a car I am very flexibel to travel in the way how I like it the most. I don't have schedules of bus or train. I can take the road I like, stop when I want. Even make a short nap when I become tired. It gives me shelter for bad weather or a burning sun. Makes me warm when it freezes outside. With this car I can come in cities, narrow streets, parking garages and drive over small mountain roads.
- It is for me the cheapest way. It might be a surprise for you but yes it is. My Volkswagen has an engine which is probably one of the best made engines ever and is consuming very few gasoline (diesel). I can drive easily with this car on one tank (40 liter) from Amsterdam to Basel and then back to Frankfurt, for example. So that means that the costs I make to go from one gig to another are low. Of course I have to do regular maintenance on the car but even with those costs it is still the cheapest way for me to tour.
- Since I lean on my smartphone for information about weather, roads, e-mail and because I want to be update with the social media, I can't have it when the battery becomes low. So I charge it in my car!
- Another reason why I want to keep my car as long as possible is because I have the opinion that we should not think in an economical way. In our western society we throw things away when it is economical written off. We buy new. But more and more (and I am happy about it) people start to realize that to repair something is smarter than to throw things away. Think about all the efforts and energy and labor to make new things. The odometer of my care shows 632.000 km (October 2016). And my car dealer thinks that it is possible to make another two- or three hundred thousand. So perhaps I go for a million km's. And if the car is still in a good shape and functioning, why not??
The cheapest, the smartest and the most reliable way to tour.
- I can rely on my car! My Volkswagen Golf Tdi is a very solid car, strong and reliable. For tours and travelling I can't have it that I drive with fear of a break down. I need a good and safe car. I am using winter tires in all seasons because it can happen that I have suddenly some snow!
To tour with your own car is relaxing, cool and it gives pleasure. A feeling of freedom. To go where I want and to drive to other countries. Meeting old and new friends. So besides that I need to travel a lot it gives also a lot of good energy back. Every day new views, new roads and landscapes passing buy.