The Roadie

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"A good roadie knows his whole job is to make someone else look good, keep someone else safe, help someone else do what they were put here to do. A good roadie stays out of the spotlight. If he's doing his job right, you don't even know he's there. Once in a while he might step on stage just to fix a problem, to set something right. But then before you even realize he was there or what he did, he's gone."
Eddie Riggs, Brütal Legend

The Rock Star is but a rock. With the help of the roadie, these rocks will be polished and shot through space and become the stars that they were meant to be.

The Roadie is an integral — yet sadly unappreciated — part of the rocking process. Roadies tune guitars, replace lights, check mikes, bounce entrances, drive the bus, cater parties, market merchandise and holds the bass player's hair up as they vomit. The music does not just happen by accident after all.

Because of the various jobs roadies are know to do, they are usually portrayed as the "Hyper-Competent Sidekick" type, managing to fulfill every need no matter how grand. Older roadies are portrayed as sagely, veteran types, having been to every corner of the industry, tasted every drug, known every legend and always having a An Aesop to impart in the process.

Note that stage managers and roadies/stage crew are two different things and never should be confused.


Examples:

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    Comic Books 
  • "Young" Neil Nordegraf from Scott Pilgrim is the roadie of the Power Trio band "Sex Bob-Omb", which also is the support bassist when Scott is out as well their Loony Fan Knives Chau.

    Films — Animated 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Roadie stars Meat Loaf as a Gadgeteer Genius who becomes a roadie for a traveling rock and roll show.
  • Various classmates in School of Rock who did not become a part of the band were assigned the roles of roadies and groupies (albeit a PG-rated equivalent).
  • In This Is Spinal Tap the roadies often have to come on stage to help with the many goofs involving props or improperly done fancy moves.

    Literature 
  • In the Discworld novel Soul Music, the Disc's first rock band acquires a roadie named Asphalt.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The 2016 Cameron Crowe series Roadies are about a group of roadies that help set up for the The Station-House Band.

    Music 
  • The minor Byrds track "BB Class Road" is sung in the persona of a roadie boasting about his skills and lifestyle.
  • The Tenacious D song "The Roadie" was made as a thank you letter to all the roadies out there whose work goes unappreciated. In the song's official music video however, the titular roadie Sebastion is portrayed as being a legitimately good roadie that had worked with Van Halen, Metallica and AC/DC in the past, but eventually gets drunk and destroys Jack and Kyle's green room after being rejected by a groupie. He then goes on to buy drugs, reject a boy who comes to him with a paternity test and then cons money out of them in exchange for a hooker (Jack and Kyle to fire him because of it).

    Video Games 

    Web Comics 
  • Roadie Joe from The Rock Cocks is a roadie hired by Sterling for the band's first official album recording.
  • In TV Tropes The Webcomic, Gabe The Sixth Ranger started moonlighting as a roadie for the main cast's band Troper Croe soon after his first appearance in the series.

    Western Animation 

    Real Life 
  • Most roadies in the United States work as part of the IATSE union ("International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees").

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