MusicDish e-Journal - March 22, 2018
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John Schlick Lighting Design
Archive of Articles

John Schlick is a Lighting Designer who tours nationally. He has written bar and band review pieces, as well as nightclub-related human nature pieces for a local Seattle rag format publication that is now defunct, though he denies that it was his pieces that sent them under!

He started his career as a Lighting Designer touring with six-night-a week top 40 road bands, (playing a week in one city, and then moving on) and migrated to LA where he worked as a DJ in a strip club until he landed work at the (then) largest lighting company in the country, Showlites. While there, he worked on any number of large concert tours, preparing, repairing and building custom gear, doing video shoots, getting fired by famous people, seeing all kinds of naughty behaviors, and generally working really, really hard, ‘cause that’s what you end up doing when you work in the production end of the music business. If you’d like name dropping, he’s built gear for, ran lights for, or toured in some capacity with the likes of Van Halen, Kiss, Hall and Oates, Billy Joel, Billy Idol, Fishbone, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Lone Justice, Spin Doctors, Guns and Roses, and the Genitorturers (to name a few of the better known ones).

Presently, he has a number of local Seattle clients and one nationally touring client (The Genitorturers), which keeps him on the road about 1/3rd of the time (and yes, he wants another large nationally touring client!!!)

The articles about touring come mostly from personal experience, but people living that lifestyle trade stories, so not every referential story you read will be about him. But, his exposure to these experiences brings with it a gritty reality that sometimes makes the publicized fantasies of life on the road seem totally out of reach, and other times, the stories seem too wild to be believed. This is the dichotomy of the music business.

If you are looking to learn more about the business end of being on the road, or what it means to really live in the touring world, then this is a series of articles not to be missed.

Contact John on his website or e-mail him with questions about the touring end of the music business (or to hire him). His website is and he can be reached at (206) 932-6622 or at his e-mail, above.

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