Artist Blog | Emily Barker talks to Chuck Ragan and Joe Ginsberg

I write this final blog post from Perth, Western Australia. The Revival Tour is now a few weeks behind us all. We said our goodbyes after the Leeds show on 20th November and returned to our respective homes scattered across the globe. Most of us now are taking a break over Christmas and spending time with family and friends, the ones we neglect due to the nature of life on the road.

I always find it difficult finishing a tour. It’s hard to say goodbye to people you’ve shared such intense, incredible, life-changing moments with. Especially hard when you never really know if you’ll ever see one another again. One thing’s for certain, the 2012 European/UK lineup will not repeat itself. That is the sad and beautiful thing about The Revival Tour. No line up is ever the same. It is a constantly changing vehicle in motion.

I had an absolute blast on The Revival Tour. I learnt a hell of a lot about myself as a person and a musician and feel honored to have been on the road with such incredible musicians and people. Chuck, Joe, Jon, Cory, Rocky, Jay, Aiden, Elliot, Martin, Emre, Barbs, Devan and Silvio… thank you all! What a tour it was!

I’ll step back in time now to backstage at one of the UK shows where I spoke to Chuck Ragan and Joe Ginsberg about the 2012 Europe/UK Revival Tour…

Chuck Ragan about The Revival Tour

“The Revival Tour has been going now for 5 years and it seems like each tour just keeps getting better and better and we weren’t sure how that was even possible given the first one was so great! It just keeps developing and growing so organically which, to me, seems exactly right to this type of tour and the ethics behind it. It’s a collaboration of artists in a very grassroots manner. To me it’s the group of people that make this particular Revival Tour so unique. The artists we have are by far the most diverse and eclectic. Artists not only from different genres but also from different parts of the world. It has always been the goal to be constantly moving and getting like-minded folks to come together, ready to leave the ego at the door and learn from each other and collaborate. Ready not only take the tour to the next level but to take their own music to the next level. I just feel being on this tour that I’ve never been more inspired and challenged as a writer and a player. I feel like the weak link and that I need to step up my game! That said, there’s no pressure. It’s something that is more an infectious feeling. Everybody is backing each other up and challenging each other.

I grew up with my mother as an entertainer, and our father as a pro golfer, we’ve done nothing but move around. I joined a band as a young fella and that kept me away from having a stationary place. So I’ve been touring a long time and out of all the touring I’ve done, this is the by far the most special way to share music and keep moving around.

It’s the most special thing and it’s honestly revived my faith in music and the power of music to pull people together from all over the world. The Revival Tour has made a massive difference in my life and a lot of my friend’s life. It has restored in me how important and special it is to share music with conviction. Share music that we believe in. Simple.”

Joe Ginsberg (double bassist and musical director) for The Revival Tour

How long have you been working with Chuck? ?

I met Chuck about 2 years ago and we had spoken about 6 months before that. I met him through a mutual friend Casey Cress who worked as tour manager and front of house engineer for my previous band. We’ve been making music sounds together since and this is my third Revival Tour.”

How did you come to be musical director on Revival Tour? ?

“I did the last European run and had given Chuck some ideas on how to tighten up the show and make it a bigger production. After that tour, when we were getting ready for the USA leg in 2012, I asked Chuck what he thought about me being music director and helping organise rehearsals, bring new ideas in etc, and he was up for that which was cool.”

Is it a challenging job?

“It’s a fun job. Trying to relate to each artist in different ways. Trying to get us all to come together. Everyone works differently and most people are used to running their own band, so meeting all these new personalities has been great and very interesting.”

How do you think this Revival Tour differs from others?

“On this tour there has been by far the most collaboration ever, which is awesome. It’s really the direction we wanted to take the tour, with different styles of music and bringing it all together.”