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Review Zoo talk to Dan Friar from, the helpful platform for techs and tours.

Hi Dan, Welcome to Review Zoo

Hi Lee, thanks for the invite.

Please can you tell us a bit about

Sorry if I’m stating the obvious, but I don’t want to assume that everybody knows what backline means, in the music industry sense backline is the musical instruments on a concert/gig stage and the amplification, effects and associated equipment that goes with those instruments and amplification.

A Backline tech is the person who sets up, looks after, repairs and tunes the backline. A.K.A. Guitar Tech, Drum Tech Keyboard Tech or general Backline Tech. Some general public might call them Roadies. Some Backline techs don’t like that name. Personally I’m happy to be called a Guitar tech, a Backline Tech or a Roadie. is an organisation (not a business or a company). We are a great resource and directory for the live music industry to find experienced, professional, touring, Guitar techs, Drum techs, Keyboard/Playback techs and general Backline techs.

Our members are many of the best backline techs in the business.

We also work as a great hub for our members to be able to contact each other with technical, travel, social or industry questions and issues and to find deps to cover any gigs they can’t do.

And as a great bridge between many different musical and technical companies looking to connect with artists and their technicians.

How did backlinetechs come about?

It started in Covid lockdown. I have been a touring Guitar tech for many years and I was looking for a way to help me and a few friends and colleagues to eventually get back on the road, a way for tours and productions to find us. To see who was still available. The live music industry was one of the first industries to close and last to re-open. A lot of great techs left the industry during covid.

So I built the site, not knowing if it would help or not or how long it would be until we could start touring again, but to my surprise it grew very quickly and very soon we had a lot of the industries greatest techs signing up and as soon as lockdown lifted lots of tour managers production managers and artists were regularly using the site.

We realised fairly quickly this was a very positive way to help the industry get back on its feet and also carry on as a useful resource for everybody involved post covid.

Who are you looking for?

Looking for a tech?

Tour managers, Production Managers, Artists, Artist Management, anybody looking for a tech for their next tour, one off gig, instrument repair or technical advice, would find our site very useful.

Tech looking to join ?

For our current site you have to be an experienced touring tech to become a member. Most of our techs have many years of experience, some decades of experience, but if you have only been touring for a year or two and you can get respected industry professionals to vouch for you, you’re in.

I did noticed very early on that the technical side of the live music industry isn’t a very diverse place. It’s getting better, but there’s still a long way to go. I think this is something that needs to be addressed in a very pro-active way. To make our side of the industry reflect the world we live in. Welcoming everybody and promoting the many different potential roles to everybody in our society. are trying our best, but would love to be a much more diverse organisation and will do what we can to make this happen and we are always open to anybody’s suggestions & advice to help us do this.

What’s the application process?

To be a member you have to be an experienced, touring backline tech. Guitar, keys/playback, drums etc.

with provable experience and industry references.

You can apply to become a member at

Are there any fees?

No, it’s completely free. No sign up fee, no fee to search for techs. In fact if you send us the backline role you are looking to fill, we will send the position out to all our members and get back to you with a list of available and appropriate techs, with all their details, work history, client list, experience etc….. for free. Then you can choose the perfect tech for your needs.

It’s free to join as a tech. We don’t take a cut of any work we get for our members.

I set this up when nobody could work, so I wasn’t going to ask techs to pay a fee to join.

It’s worked to our advantage though. You can’t undercut something that’s free and there’s no reason for productions, artists and tour managers to not use us…. Cos it’s free.

Did I mention it’s free.

We might start selling merch soon…. That won’t be free.

Where can we go to find out more?

For any question you may have or if you are looking to fill a backline role on your next gig or tour, you can contact me at


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