I was lucky enough to work for one of the biggest heavy metal bands from my younger years and better yet, Slayer's "Final World Tour". Slayer, Anthrax, Lamb of God, Testament + Napalm Death took the stage at the Idaho Center, August 21, 2018. It was a full (full) house and let me say this. They were awesome!. I'm really observant of backstage "living" and this show was not what I expected it to be. At. All. Aside from the wonderful crew, the leads of the bands were my favorite part. I'm not a heavy metal par-taker and I don't know who any of the performers were nor did I research them before I worked this tour. I ended up driving them back and forth to various places of the venue for a good part of the day in my golf cart- so faces became familiar fast.
Since you can only "lay rubber" at 5 mph in my cart we got into mini conversations. I saw pictures of kids, family's and learned small bits and parts of their life/music journey. I drop them off backstage and tell them I'll be there when their set's done. They so graciously say "thanks for the lift!". When I picked them up, they were drenched in sweat and that is no exaggeration. Towels draped over their heads, wobbly in stance from exertion as they make their way to my cart. I'm pretty quiet when I pick artists up because most need downtime but not them. A cheerful "Hey! how's it going!?" and they picked right back up on the conversation where we left off pre-performance. In my head I'm thinking "I can't believe what just came out of your face on stage and you're actually asking me how my day's going?". Most of us would be laying face down in the dirt after exerting a performance like that but not these guys.
In short, I have a great new appreciation for heavy metal performers. They give A LOT to their audience and truly love their fans and when they step off stage they quickly return to their inner soft self. These experiences are what keep me doing what I'm passionate about. I'm a very lucky girl.