Rider Essentials: Shane Nicholson

3 February 2022 | 11:41 am | Mallory Arbour

We caught up with singer-songwriter/producer Shane Nicholson to find out the things he always takes on the road with him for this week’s Rider Essentials.

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From today, Shane Nicholson is hitting the road, taking his latest album, Living In Colour, on tour around Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland until mid-May. Special guests Camille Trail and Michael Waugh will join Nicholson on selected dates (see here for details).

Released in August 2021, Living In Colour was ARIA nominated for ‘Best Country Album’ and will vie for ‘Alt Country Album’ and ‘Toyota Album of the Year’ at the upcoming Golden Guitar Awards, of which he is also up for ‘Male Artist Of The Year’ as well as ‘APRA AMCOS Song’ and ‘Apple Music Single of the Year' for his Top 15 country radio single, And You Will Have Your Way.

To date, the Australian singer-songwriter and producer has recorded 11 studio albums, of which has seen over 10 million streams so far. He has received three ARIA awards – for his solo album Hell Breaks Loose in 2015 and for his hit collaborations Rattlin’ Bones (2008) and Wreck & Ruin (2012) with Kasey Chambers. He has also won 11 Golden Guitar awards, including the 2021 ‘Song of the Year’ for The High Price of Surviving, as well as two APRA awards.

We caught up with Shane to find out the things he always takes on the road with him for this week’s Rider Essentials.

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1. Books. Proper books, printed on paper

They’re obviously heavier and more cumbersome than a tablet, but there’s no substitute for feeling and smelling a real book as you read before you sleep. There’s also a nice familiarity in a book, when you’re travelling and changing beds each night – having that same story continuing, and that same dog-eared book to hold, is comforting. 

2. One pair of underpants per each day away, plus one extra pair

This is the safest rule I have found over the years. It gives you some extra breathing room if you decide to swim at the hotel, and don’t have time to do laundry. Or if your flight home is delayed by a day, then you have a safety net. It’s basic, good touring-practice.

3. Betadine Throat Gargle - a singer’s best friend

It’s so easy to get sick on tour, and singers are always the first to go down, without fail. Must be all those germ-riddled microphones – hot tip: only ever use your own mic! This iodine gargle stuff has saved many shows for me, and staved off many-a throat infection. Kevin Bennett is a big proponent of it, too. I think he has it on his backstage rider, alongside his custom-ordered rainbow M&M’s. 

4. Whiskey flask

An absolute necessity on tour (but really, one should never go anywhere without their whiskey flask. That’s like leaving home without your head). I have a whole range of different ones I’ve carried around the world with me, depending on my mood and the required aesthetic for the day/show/tour. Any flask is only as good as the whiskey you put in it, though. Another hot tip: also works in place of Betadine Throat Gargle. 

5. Your guitar!

While this may seem an obvious inclusion, it pains me to admit that I have, more than once, set off on tour without a guitar. Which is odd, as I play guitar for every single show – as I have for the last 29 years. It always surprises me when I reach the airport and then realise, I’ve not brought an instrument with me. 

Keep up to date with Shane Nicholson on his Facebook page here.

For more of our Rider Essentials series, go here.

Image: Supplied