When the life you love is making music with your friends, and you can't wait to get on the road again -- one intricacy of being in an up-and-coming band has always been forking over a portion of merchandise sales to the venue. Now, Live Nation is changing things with its "On the Road Again" program inspired by the Willie Nelson classic.
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Live Nation has just announced its ambitious new “On the Road Again” program, inspired by Country music legend Willie Nelson’s classic hit, which is designed to help improve the lives of touring artists and musicians who call the road their home by helping to offset their travel and lodging costs by letting more merchandise money flow into their own pockets.
“Touring is important to artists so whatever we can do to help other artists, I think we should do it. This program will impact thousands of artists this year and help make touring a little bit easier,” said Willie, who provided his famous track as the program’s official anthem.
"Touring is a crucial part of an artist’s livelihood, and we understand travel costs take one of the biggest bites out of artists’ nightly profits," Live Nation said in a press release. "By helping with these core expenses, we aim to make it easier for artists on the road so they can keep performing to their fans in more cities across the country."
Under the new initiative, all acts playing Live Nation-owned and operated venues -- headliners and support acts -- are entitled to $1,500 in cash for gas and travel per show, in addition to their performance payment. Also, venues will no longer charge any merchandise selling fees, giving the artists full control of their merch table profits.
Additionally, financial bonuses will be offered to local promoters, tour representatives, and venue crew members who have worked over 500 hours in 2023. Lastly, $5 million will be made available by the "On the Road Again" program to Crew Nation, Live Nation's fund created during the height of the COVID pandemic with the aim of supporting live concert crews affected by shutdowns across the industry.
“Delivering for live artists is always our core mission,” says Michael Rapino, President and CEO of Live Nation Entertainment, of the new program which begins today, (9/27) with no expiration date. “The live music industry is continuing to grow, and as it does, we want to do everything we can to support artists at all levels on their touring journey, especially the developing artists in clubs.”
For more information on the program and a list of participating venues, visit roadagain.live.