Four musicians traveling 1,600+ miles by foot and playing 50 shows, while simultaneously making a live album & documentary with local artists they meet on the road.
Upon hearing about the walking guys, I had to know more. Were there really four men walking down the coast for an epic tour… that happened to be stopping in my city? You heard that right! After talking to Ben on the phone for an hour or so, I got the scoop on what their epic journey is all about.
TELL ME A LITTLE OF YOUR BACKGROUND. HOW DID Y’ALL MEET?
Ben: I got the idea about two years ago, and honestly, I almost did it by myself. Luckily, I met Riley a few months later. We met at an internship with Cause A Scene Music; I guess that’s a pretty normal way to meet someone.
Next, I met Will. This is a little bit of a crazier story. I was craving adventure, and was so bummed that I couldn’t do the tour. So, I decided to do something a little adventurous and I hiked the Appalachian Trail with a friend for a little while. We decided we wanted to go to Boston on a break, but we didn’t know anyone to stay with. So I posted on Facebook to find a host. This guy I knew decently well had a friend that lived in Boston. That friend ended up being Will. He had never met us and welcomed us into his home. Originally we were staying for three nights, but Will and his wife had a conflict so they got us a hotel… without even knowing us. The third night we stayed with them, played guitar, and had an awesome time. We eventually went to the 30A Songwriters Festival together. Will is married with a full time job in Boston. He will be quitting his job and leaving his wife at home for four months to fuel his passion for adventure.
Will won’t meet Riley or Chris until the tour. Everyone is currently living in Nashville except for will.
Finally, I met Chris after posting an ad on Young Entertainment Professionals of Nashville Facebook page asking for a photographer, videographer, or others to join an adventure tour. I got at least 20-30 responses. Needless to say, most people were not interested once they heard my idea. One guy was. That was Chris. We went and got coffee, went on a few “bro dates,” and he decided to get on board with the tour.
WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO WALK VENUE TO VENUE?
Ben: I met two guys in different periods of my life that were walking across the country for different reasons. They had really freaking cool stories. These guys were really going after life, and getting to experience life and people in a very unique way. I have never been a big fan of the whole go to college, get married, buy a house, get a dog, have kids and die track. I’ve just always wanted to do more. When I was younger my cousin hiked the Appalachian Trail. That made me want to do something crazy one day too.
During my junior year of college at Auburn University, I started thinking about what I was going to do with my life. I knew I loved music, and that’s where the idea to walk across country was born.
WHAT ARE Y’ALL GOING TO DO FOR FUN WHEN YOU’RE WALKING BETWEEN VENUES?
Ben: There has been a debate on that. In this time of our lives we are all trying to figure out what we are doing. I want to carve out time for silence every day. Some of us want to listen to books on tape. And we will be listening to a ton of music. We will be walking on roads so we definitely need to be on high alert.
WHEN CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE A DOCUMENTARY?
Ben: We will be filming it all ourselves, and we will have a couple of times where a film crew comes out, but other than that we are doing all the work ourselves. Since this will be a timely process, you can expect to see something in spring of 2016.
WHAT ARE YOU USING TO FILM?
Ben: A DLSR, with some Gopro footage as well.
WHAT DO YOU THINK WILL BE THE MOST CHALLENGING PART OF YOUR JOURNEY?
Ben: Initially, our legs are going to hurt too badly to think about anything else. Physically it will be difficult at first. I am thinking about getting a tattoo of the word “perseverance”. I am going to question why we’re doing this, but not losing sight is going to be important. Homesickness will definitely be rough, but will for sure be the worst for Will, the married man. I think that trying to feel like we’re doing something worthwhile will be a challenge at some points of the trip.
HOW ARE YOU GOING TO CARRY ALL OF YOUR GEAR?
Ben: We will be pushing all of our stuff around with these bad boys!
ARE YOU NERVOUS?
Ben: A little bit. Not about the walking or sleeping situation because there are 4 of us, and that creates a good support system. The biggest worry is getting out there and people not latching on to our story or liking our music. As far as the adventurous walking and sleeping wherever we can, I’m not worried.
WHAT IS YOUR SLEEPING SITUATION GOING TO LOOK LIKE?
Ben: Night to night will be very different. We all come from different backgrounds, so we have contacts all over the place. We are bringing full camping gear in case we camp out on people’s lawns, or if we ever can’t find a place to stay. We are hoping that people will host house shows. We are also working with a company that hooks up talent with bed and breakfast and hotels in exchange for a show or social media post.
WHAT CAN WE DO TO HELP YOU?
Ben: Staying updated on social media is the best thing our followers and fans can do. Also we are looking for houses to play at, and places to host us . If anyone is interested contact us at Info@thewalkingguys.com Also, come out to our shows!