Resume of a Roadie Life
When I first landed a job working for a backstage caterer at a concert venue in 1997, I had no idea it would lead me into a decades-long career that would take me to hundreds of cities and over fifty countries worldwide, and have me going on tour with some of the biggest rockstars in music history. But it did.
In addition to Catering and Hospitality Director, my backstage duties evolved to include: Wardrobe Supervisor, Event Designer, Dressing Room Coordinator, Production Coordinator.
Though my duties and responsibilities varied from tour to tour, aspects of my job included:
Prepared artist dressing room logistics including assignment, arrangement, furniture, ambiance, wardrobe and hospitality requirements.
Executed performers individualized needs prior to and throughout duration of live performance and tour.
Maintained all aspects of clothing attire including stylist selection, design, tailoring, laundering and repair.
Composed customized catering riders.
Negotiated catering contracts and event orders.
Advanced band, crew and guest backstage hospitality, plus special event specifications with concert promoters, television producers and caterers.
Balanced expenses; reconciled accounting settlements.
Provided backstage guest tours and on-camera interviews.
Upon completing the 1997 concert season at an amphitheater in North Carolina, by 1998, I found myself going out on my first music tour. That meant I lived on the tour bus and in hotels. All my belongings were inside a rolling suitcase or road-case. I showered and dressed in sports team locker rooms in arenas and stadiums. Every day I was in a different city, state, country, time-zone, season, hemisphere.
In addition to the over 200 musical artists shows where I worked as a local backstage professional in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Florida and North Carolina venues, the Music Artists with whom I toured include:
Janet Jackson: Velvet Rope Tour (1998)
Cher: Do You Believe Tour (1999)
Backstreet Boys: Black and Blue, Into the Millennium Tours (1999-2001)
Britney Spears: Oops I Did It Again, Hit Me Baby One More Time Tours (1999-2000)
N’Sync: No Strings Attached Tour (2000)
John Mellencamp: U.S Tour (2002)
The Eagles: Farewell I Tour (2004-2006)
Christina Aguilera/I Love All Access: Back to Basics Tour (2007)
Dancing with the Stars: DWTS Live Tour (2006-2007)
Nickelback: Here & Now Tour (2012), No Fixed Address Tour (2015)
Phish: U.S Tours (2016-2018)
Bon Jovi: Bounce, Have A Nice Day, Lost Highway, Circle, Live, Because We Can, This House Is Not For Sale World Tours (2003- 2022)
Even more, when not on tour, I facilitated a wide range of backstage Theatre, Arena and Stadium production and site coordination, including, ticketing, talent wrangling, fan club, runner, venue logistics for: ClearChannel, Live Nation, AEG, I Love All Access/Irving Azoff Productions, MagicWorks Entertainment, PNC Bank Arts Center/NJ, Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre/NC, NJSEA
Qualities that make someone suitable for a backstage job in the music industry include:
Being creative, resourceful and having exceptional organizational skills.
Focused on meticulous execution of highly planned live events.
Skilled strategist in prioritizing multiple responsibilities and overcoming obstacles.
Finely tuned ability to provide careful attention to every detail.
Cost conscious; able to develop solutions to stretch budgets while delivering a personalized event and touring experience.
Having a punctual proven ability to meet strict deadlines and provide service excellence. Early is On-Time and On-Time is LATE!
Ability to work an average 16-18-hour work day.
Don't be starstruck.
Being a Roadie is far more than a job. It's a Lifestyle. Backstage is Family. The world is your workplace. Mile by mile...
Sometimes a Roadie is asked to speak to the press, especially when press comes through on a backstage tour. Here are some press pieces where I've been featured:
This one is from Ohio, USA when an Ohio State University group of journalists who wrote for their paper, The Lantern, visited backstage. The article includes: "a few had the chance to meet Dawn Jeronowitz , Jon Bon Jovi’s stylist and personal assistant . She gave a tour of his dressing room that she decorates differently in each city . His dressing room in Columbus was draped in black with white and green accents, with silver skulls in various places . Jeronowitz also showed off some of Jon Bon Jovi’s clothes, shoes and his bathroom where she handpicks a fortune that goes into a silver fortune cookie . He reads this before each show and Jeronowitz let the students help her pick the one for Tuesday’s show."
Funny enough, a local Arkansas newspaper even wrote an article about the time I had a pair of stage pants that belonged to the drummer hemmed at a local tailor shop!
Here's a backstage news piece where I was featured in Dublin, Ireland
And a backstage news article from Romania. Notably, a little 'lost-in-translation' may have occurred during this interview. The article mentions that I had been friends with Jon Bon Jovi since childhood... but that is not the case. I grew up and lived ten minutes away from him, in the next town over from JBJ in New Jersey, but I did not know him at that time.
It was a crazy day in Nashville, Tennessee, but I still had to take a few minutes to do an on-camera interview with Billboard. In addition to, "wardrobe stylist Dawn Jeronowitz shares how she “looks for certain colors and cuts” that suit the band members as they perform," I also discussed the biggest backstage hot topic: FOOD!
Here I was featured in another backstage news article from a Bucharest, Romania news outlet, Liber Tatea.
Working backstage, going on tour is one of the most unique jobs on earth. Every night, in hundreds of cities worldwide, I look out at 20, 50, 80, 100 thousand people all jumping, swaying, cheering, dancing and singing together. It is BEAUTIFUL! One major difference between a Rockstar and a Roadie: when the tour ends, the Rockstar goes home while the Roadie jumps onto another tour and keeps on rolling!