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On The Road, For The Record: Turnover

Turnover is the alt-rock band hailing from Virginia Beach comprised of Austin Getz, Casey Getz, and Danny Dempsey. The band came together in 2009 and have since put out four albums, been on tour all over the world, and developed an amazingly loyal fan-base.

Milk caught up with the rockstars just before their sold-out show at the newly renovated Webster Hall in Manhattan. Following the release of their fourth album, Altogether, the guys are finishing up a tour with Men I Trust and Renata Zeiguer. The band played a packed house last Saturday with adoring fans moshing and throwing their Santa Con Santa hats up in the air, nearly hitting the disco ball that lead singer, Austin Getz, made a note to say on stage he was really a fan of. “Keep that going all night,” he told the guys in the booth above the crowd. 

The guys talked to Milk about staying on Stanley Kubrick’s Estate, Uncrustables and being high in a van on the road during a winter storm. If you didn’t get a chance to see them live, Turnover won’t be off the road anytime soon. They just released a European tour and festival dates for 2020.

Be sure to check out just some of the tracks these guys listen to in the bandwagon:

What is the biggest misconception about being on tour?

Casey Getz: Definitely seeing the world, you don’t see much besides the venue. 

Austin Getz: Have you ever seen that meme? It’s like ‘what’s being on tour like,’ and it’s a picture of an empty wallet, and backstage.

CG: Yeah. It’s a lot of waiting around, and you don’t get to see as much as you’d think.

AG: There is a lot of free time but it’s like cut up in chunks. Like okay, cool we load in at this time, and then you have like 45 minutes, so you can’t really go leave other than to get food or something. So it’s a lot of like, ‘I’ve been to this city, but I’ve really only been near the venue.’ A lot of people are like, ‘Oh my gosh, you must have seen the whole world.’ That’s definitely the biggest misconception. 

 You guys have been touring for a while now. Do you have a favorite venue or city?

AG: It’s hard to say. London is amazing. 

CG: Everything’s good in a different way. The venue in our hometown is nice, but I can’t say it’s my favorite place to play.

AG: New York’s really cool just because so many friends are here and this is one of the first places we ever got shown love outside of our hometown. 

CG: If we’re talking strictly venues, there’s a really nice one in Milwaukee. Like some venues just have really nice backstages.  

AG: Yeah, Prince designed the green rooms and they just kept his design because they were like, ‘well it’s probably not going to get any better than this,’ so that’s pretty cool. It’s always cool going abroad and stuff too you know, so hard to say favorites, just different.

 Who usually comes on tour with you, are you guys in a bus?

AG: It’s different at home, like here in the States we travel in this thing called a Bandwagon it’s basically an RV. So it’s in between a van and a bus. There’s like eight bunks because now it’s like the band- so there’s five of us plus, Front of House engineer, tour manager, the light person- they’re the same person- and then someone to sell merch, so doing it in a van would be pretty cramped. But then we go abroad and we’re still in a van.

 What’s your relationship with Men I Trust? 

CG: The relationship with Men I trust is pretty new I would say.

AG: We played with them at Dot to Dot in England last year so we’ve known them for a little over a year. 

CG: This is our first time really getting to know them, but there are some bands we’ve toured with like five times, obviously those feel closer to our hearts.

 Do you have a favorite band you like touring with?

CG: We’ve toured with Citizen and Turnstile so many times. So I would say one of them.

 How did this tour come about, with Men I Trust?

CG: We met them and became friends, and the show was really good. There was only one show, so we were like, ‘We should play some more.’ Then we played a few other ones when we were on tour with Turnstile, we had like a few one-off shows with Men I Trust, and those were good too.

AG: I was just a fan of the band. We were looking for someone to open a show we were doing in London a little over a year ago and we asked them, and they happened to be in Europe and they said yes. The show was good and we both had a record coming out around the same time so it just worked out. But they’re awesome, really inspiring musicians too. It’s hard to say favorite people to go on tour with because like he was saying, Turnstile we’ve known them basically since we’ve ever been a band, they played our hometown when we were first starting to be a band. They’re just from Baltimore, so really close. So it’s always cool to go on tour with homies, but touring with a band like Men I Trust, I feel like inspires a little bit more growth because they’re so new and there’s so much more to learn because we don’t know them. So that’s always an interesting experience too.

 Do you have any green room must-haves? Like what do you always keep stocked? 

CG: Hummus. Gotta have Hummus. That’s the only thing.

AG: Hummus, avocados, tequila, White Claws are a new addition. Water. 

CG: Uncrustables. I feel like most people think those are the funniest. Everyone thinks that except for- Men I Trust is like French Canadian so they had never seen that before. They think they’re really good though. 

 They are really good!

AG: It’s funny because a lot of bands have like peanut butter, jelly, and bread which is just like, there’s so much waste in that, you don’t need a bottle of jelly every day. We usually take it all though, that’s the cool thing about having the Bandwagon, we can take it all and put in our fridge so not much goes to waste. 

CG: Yeah it’s a lot less waste. It’s also kind of annoying though, to clean the green room every night. Like last night I had a huge box of stuff. It’s a good way to save money though.

 Do you have any horror stories or triumphs from tour? 

AG: We’ve had some funny experiences for sure. We stayed in a condemned house before in Georgia.

CG: We stayed in Stanley Kubrick’s estate in England.

AG: Yeah, I guess his grandson is like a metalhead and plays in a metal band in England. The first time we went over there, he was friends with our driver, so he was like ‘Yeah, you guys can stay!’ So we stayed in the guest house, and I guess there were certain little scenes in The Shining filmed in there and stuff so that was pretty cool. There’s like a hedge maze that I guess inspired that part of it, it was cool. 

CG: We smoked a J in the hedge maze.

AG: Horror stories.. the worst thing honestly, the worst kind of shit that’s ever happened to us, has just been driving stuff. We were talking about earlier one time we got trapped in the winter-time we couldn’t make it through this pass going from California, like, out towards Salt Lake City, and we ended up being in the van for like 42 hours. That really sucked, but we’ve been pretty lucky I mean, we’ve never had anything taken from us or anything like that. 

CG: The story that Austin was just talking about, that’s the first time he ever smoked weed. He was like really high trapped in the van.

 Were you paranoid?

AG: I honestly wasn’t, I was so high that I was just in a different world. I was just laughing so much and then I fell asleep.

 I guess that’s the best way to be if you’re trapped in a bus.

AG: That’s why I did it! This was back when we were in the van. We had some medical Marijuana brownies from our friend that grew weed, and I was like, ‘oh, we’re about to be in here for a really long time I guess this is the best time to do it.’ I was trippin.

  Do you guys have any pre-show rituals?

CG: Actually, no. Just chill. Make myself calm, maybe drink some tequila. 

 Do you get really nervous still? 

AG: I get pretty nervous. 

CG: I never really got nervous. I just play drums.

AG: This tour has been one of the most nerve-wracking because there’s a lot of new stuff, you know, a new record, I’m playing keys instead of guitar, big shows. So, I definitely think that there’s still a good amount of nerves, but yeah, no real rituals. 

 What do you guys wear on stage? Do you usually go for comfort or style?

CG: I usually just wear whatever I was wearing during the day. Maybe I’ll direct my T-shirt to the city or something.

AG: Danny tries to be probably the most fashion-forward, but I think most of us just wear whatever we’re rocking that day.

 What do you usually listen to on the road? 

CG: Definitely DaBaby.

In the van, it was completely different, because you have to play music for like five hours, so I feel like it was maybe a wider variety and a little more serious.

AG: Yeah, I remember back then when we would drive the van, I would find so much music that way just because I’m like, ‘Well, I’m out of everything I know how to listen to, let me go look around for all this stuff.’ Now with the Bandwagon, you get on there after the show and just listen to the same 25 hip hop songs and just dance around. 

CG: Every tour we have a different 20 or 30 songs that we just turn up to. Right now it’s DaBaby.

AG: We just saw him at Terminal 5 actually. 

What advice do you have for bands or musicians going on tour for the first time?

CG: Don’t buy a really nice van. Buy a shitty used van. That’s what we did.

AG: Don’t take it too seriously. Also, don’t do it if you don’t have to do it because I feel like that’s one thing a lot of at least- it’s obviously so much different than when we started touring, but when we started touring, we were like, ‘We just gotta keep touring and that’s it, that’s what we gotta do. We gotta play shows and push ourselves,’ and it burns you out. So I would say, in 2020 utilize all the resources that you have, like put your songs up, play shows but don’t kill yourself doing it. Know your own limits.

Playlist image courtesy of Jennifer Stratford 

Stay tuned to Milk for more on the road.

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