Sal Costa of My Darkest Days talks Touring (part 2 of 2)
MB: What is something you have learned on the road you think is important for all touring bands to know?
SAL: I’m going to stay away from the generic and obvious answers to this one. I’ll share what I have learned…
Stay healthy/have a good diet. It’s hard being healthy on the road when every time your bus stops for gas it’s usually the place you have to get your next meal from. Make healthy choices, workout, stay fit. It will help your brain and your body, and you need both to be a great musician. Running, pushups, sit-ups, etc., are easy to do on the road. Make it part of your daily routine. Living on the road can deteriorate your health, your mind, and your soul, so you need to do everything in your power to battle the inevitable.
Secondly – practice. Find time every day to pick up your instrument and play all the stuff you were taught as a kid. Lift songs, practice scales or rudiments, and also practice stuff that has nothing to do with your band. Expand your ears as a musician. Listen to music you would have never thought of listening to before. In the end, the more versed you become as a musician, the more you will have to offer your band and your growing career.
Lastly… make an effort to keep the unity within your band. When you live with people 24/7, sometimes habits or little arguments can become exaggerated and catastrophic. Living on the road with a pile of people in one bus is an un-normal way to live. It goes against human nature, so you need to always remind yourself why you are where you are. The answer is usually because you have 3 or 4 other brothers who are exactly as passionate as you are, and desire the same goals. Work together, not apart. United you stand, divided you fall.
MB: Starting off in a band who was touring for free for small venues, and now looking at your up and coming arena tour with Nickelback, Bush and Seether. What do you think has been your biggest reason for getting to where you are today?
SAL: This is a really simple question to answer. I am here today because of all the teachers who have taught me how to play my instrument, all the support from my friends and family who never lost hope in me, finding talented and hard-working band members who share the same love for music that I do, and for all the fans that have held my hand along the journey.
MB: For all the guitar players out there, if you could pick one guitar and one amp to play on stage for the rest of your career what would it be?
SAL: My Gibson Flying V (named Betty), and my Kramer Nite V (Betty 2). If I had an extra bedroom in my house, it’d be for them, and I would tuck them in every night. In terms of amps… MESA! It just does what I need it to do!
MB: Anything else you have to share to up and coming musicians or bands to help them succeed and take their career to the next level?
SAL: Lastly. Keep your head on straight, acknowledge every tiny milestone, stay positive, practice your craft, cherish your loved ones and give to the fans what you want them to give to YOU!
– My Darkest Days is now on tour with The Veer Union and upcoming dates with Bush, Seether and Nickelback. Make sure to check them out, they put on a great live show! A big thanks again to Sal and hope you enjoyed this Q+A. – Bonnie