The Production Assistant Diaries: Lip Synching & Tracks

The words concert production leave my lips and all of a sudden I have everyone’s attention.

We listen to their music constantly, it fills the background between conversations, it overpowers your car’s stereo and it consumes our Instagram feeds in captions.

Snapchat stories and Instagram photos cover our phones in an attempt to prove their humanity, but their attempts are no more of a success than they are a failure.

We have musicians withered down to $1.29 per song on Itunes or $5 a month on Spotify. To us, they are flawless, to us, they do no wrong, and even if they do, they’ll write the next greatest hit because of it.

*Shake It Off playing in the background…*

Call this all harsh, but from experience, I have seen both perspectives, and it’s far too true.

My office at work, depending on which venue I am at, is beside stage right, so, during the show, I’m all ears. I listen to the crowds erupt in applause, thousands of screaming girls chant a performers name and watch the tired musician battle through a show feeding off the energy.

The jet lag, lack of sleep and fatigue all fade away when they perform, and we let it happen expecting nothing less.

People who pay to watch their idols on stage have no thought to what the reality of the performer may be. They associate their favorite musician with their best-written lyric. We, myself included, dehumanize musicians until they are no more than a track.

I am employed in an industry due to the success and fame of others. I help promote their image and widen their success. In return for my employment, my work keeps them famous.

You see the full circle?

They say you have to be passionate about this industry if you’re going to work in it, to whoever might think that, I beg to differ.

This industry behind closed doors is stripped to its core until it is exposed, in full dress, to the audience. What happens behind closed doors, the labor, the fights, the divas, and the playing of tracks to reassure the audience won’t be disappointed, all point to one thing, continued success.

If you’re going to work in the industry, be prepared to love it, but spend a great deal of time hating it. Your heart will be broken more than once when you realize your favorite band is full of divas or sings most of the concert singing to track.

I’m not here to be a pessimist because I’m sure you’re thinking I am right now, but instead, I’m here to remind you they’re human.

We cannot promote the perfection we want to see in others when we know for a fact perfection in humanity is just not possible.

Rant over.