12 Essential Resources for Artists Looking to Tour in 2022 

live band on stage performing

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We’re back, baby!

And by “back” I mean: “depending on your state’s, city’s, and venue’s rules and procedures, depending on whether we see another variant outbreak, and depending on the personal comfort of you and your fans” (yada, yada, yada).

It would be naïve to think that touring in the COVID-19 pandemic era doesn’t look a little different than it used to, but the truth is that touring is happening again, and if you’re planning to hit the road this year, you’ll want to spend a little extra time planning to accommodate that. (Not that booking shows isn’t already hard enough…)

We’ve compiled a list of 12 handy resources for you artists out there looking to tour in 2022, including apps, websites, and information about everything from government restrictions to making your tour as streamlined and profitable as possible. Let’s get started!

COVID-19 Resources

1. Check Covid Restrictions by State

Not an app, but a super-duper helpful website that lets you check each state’s individual requirements as they change in real time. Depending on what locations you’re after you can check state and local activity including mask mandate, vaccine mandate, indoor restrictions, and more.

2. List of COVID-19 Contact Tracing apps

Contact tracing apps are incredibly helpful for knowing if you’ve been exposed to someone who has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, as well as alerting others if you have. While most states have their own version of the app, there isn’t one universal one, which means if you’re going from state to state, it’s helpful to have a few of them activated. You can find a list on this Wikipedia page.

iPhone users can also go to Settings and search “Exposure Notifications” to turn on alerts for different states that they plan to be in or around.

3. Proof of Vaccination Status

Depending on where you’re going — and certainly if you plan to cross international borders — you will at some point likely need to show proof of vaccination, which means you’ll have to either carry around your vaccination card (maybe not a good idea as you don’t want to lose that!) or simply have an approved app that stores that data. As with the above, each varies by state/country, but you can likely find yours at the above site.

+ Read more on Flypaper: “Tips for Saving Money While Eating Healthy on Tour.”

Touring Apps & Resources

Now that we’ve got you covered on the health and safety side, here are a few resources that can make touring even smoother!

1. GigTown

Imagine if you could submit your band to shows, open mics, and upcoming opportunities while you’re on tour (or ideally before). Gigtown makes it possible to do exactly that while making local connections and new fans on the road. You can also add your upcoming shows in addition to browsing and submitting yourself for open gigs.

2. Setlistory

Setlistory is one of those apps you don’t realize you need until you really start using it night after night and loving it. In it, you can design and develop your setlists, take notes about each song and each set to see what combinations of songs work best, print or share setlists with band members so everyone has a copy, and you can archive them as well. The archive element is so important, because after a long tour it might be hard to remember what was working and what wasn’t from night to night.

3. Asana

Thinking a bit outside the box here. Everyone has their different preferences when it comes to project management tools, but Asana is one of the best we’ve found for a few reasons.

Firstly, it’s free. Secondly, you can view assigned tasks in a list or board view, meaning that depending on how you like it to have a visual layout of your booking or show prep to-do list, there’s an option for you. Thirdly, you can assign due dates to yourself or team members (aka: bandmates).

This way, you never miss a deadline like… getting your merch done in time or posting regularly to your socials (more on that one below).

4. Artist Growth

You know how we always say your music is a business, and to treat it as one? Artist Growth helps you do that by giving you a platform to manage schedules, events, and all the (often overcomplicated) logistics of touring. You can keep track of your guest lists from city to city, the ebb and flow of finances, and even connect team members to the app so you’re all on the same page about what’s happening.

5. Indie on the Move

A timeless resource for touring musicians, Indie on the Move has helped tens of thousands of musicians put together their own tours by providing contact info for venues, booking agents, independent artists, and more. It’s a must for anyone looking to put together their own tour, and their blog is a great place to go for advice and tips.

6. MerchCat

If you’re selling merch on the road, you need this app. It’ll help you keep track of all your sales and inventory (goodbye days of trying to figure out how many albums fit in that mystery box you carry with you everywhere you go). You can even see what’s selling with smart analytics, and even integrate it with other apps like Bandsintown.

Did we mention it also helps with payment processing? I mean, who even carries around cash anymore?

7. Preview

Who wants to think about scheduling social media posts while you’re trying to setup and play a show? Using an app like Preview means you can schedule all your feed posts or even get Reels ready to go out ahead of time so you can concentrate on playing the show and posting awesome behind-the-scenes content to stories in real-time. (Or, schedule that too!)

8. DIY Tour Postings

This Facebook Group is filled with indie artists both looking to hop on shows and looking to host artists in their city. If you’re looking to fill a last-minute date or unfamiliar with a certain city, this is your go-to.

For more helpful Facebook Groups for musicians, check out our full post here.

9. Soundfly!

Bring your music on the road with our in-depth guide to the ins and outs of DIY tour booking and planning. For tips, strategies, and resources to help you get on tour faster and smarter, check out Soundfly’s popular free course, Touring on a Shoestring.

Here’s a video from the course called “How to Plot Your Tour.”

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