A couple columns ago, I talked about my experience working with the Lita Ford crew on two gigs.
The man responsible for hooking me up with those shows is the lovely and talented Jarod Woznik. Originally from Santa Clarita, he is a guitar tech extraordinaire. He is also a tour manager and a guitar player. Recently, after flying in from Puerto Rico with Ford, I caught up with Woznik for a quick interview.
Jesse Davidson: How did you become involved in music?
Jarod Woznik: When I was in elementary school, I was a part of one of those magazine drives. One of the prizes I won was a CD (remember those?) choice from about 100 different artists. I believe I narrowed it down between Backstreet Boys and Jimi Hendrix “Band of Gypsies.” Of course I chose Jimi Hendrix, which changed my love for guitar and music today.
JD: Can you give a brief background on gigs you have/had and for how long?
JW: I’ve worked freelance in event production for the past 10-plus years with many different companies and fell into tour/stage management and guitar-tech gigs.
Many of them have been “one-offs” or a week here or there, working with members from Buckcherry, The Wallflowers, Goo Goo Dolls, Chris Cornell, Fuel, etc. Most recently, my main gigs have been with The Bangles and Lita Ford, both whom I started working for in 2016 to present.
JD: What is your typical daily routine on tour, if you have one?
JW: I actually don’t really have a daily routine on tour. As long as my job gets completed to the best of my ability, that’s all that matters to me. I do try to snack and sleep whenever I can though!
JD: What have been the most unexpected moments that have happened on the road?
JW: Typically, the most unexpected moments are usually negative, like a flat tire, gear failing, etc. I always try to stay positive and keep cruising along.
JD: I think success in the industry is more subjective and completely unique to each individual. Do you agree and what do you think it is?
JW: I totally think “success” in the industry is completely unique to the individual. Some may think success means having $5 million in the bank. Others may feel success is working with certain artists. Ultimately, I think we are all on the same path trying to carve out a name for ourselves. Some paths have more speed bumps and flat tires than others, but we are all in this together. As long as I know I’m giving it my all, I feel successful at the end of the day. The past is gone and the future is unknown and may never come, so as long as I’m successful today, that’s what keeps me going!
JD: Any touring tips that you have?
JW: Don’t forget the little things! Advil, Band-Aids, hand sanitizer, Emergen-C/vitamins, extra ear-plugs, USB thumb drive, etc. They all take up minimal space and are a lifesaver on the road.
JD: Any advice to young musicians?
JW: Stay in school! Ha! From experience and stories I’ve heard, most bands don’t really start seeing any real success ’til they hit the seven-plus year mark. If you truly are not invested enough in yourself to last that long while working odd jobs, then think of another path. I started as a guitarist and thought I’d be a big rock star. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get my bands on the same page, so I ultimately started making a living behind the curtain, making sure the artists shined on stage. I actually enjoy it more than being in the spotlight and think it’s the path I was supposed to be on all along.