ROACASES, founded by Paul Dexter and Larry McNeny, has been created to chronicle, produce, and distribute a shared history of production touring from the perspective of industry professionals. ROADCASES is in its early stages of development beginning with a website along with a new idea for a cable television series and a future book.
Dexter has been writing steadily in American industry magazines since early 2000. "I wrote an article early on called, 'Is there Life After Rock'n'Roll Touring?'," says Dexter. "After touring, going out into the real world with rock'n'roll attitude was a huge shock. I need freakin' therapy now and I've discovered that I'm not the only one."
As background, McNeny and Dexter met on Ozzy Osbourne's "Diary of a Madman" Tour in 1981-82. Larry was the tour manager, as he had been for the "BeeGees and Eric Clapton and Paul was Ozzy's lighting designer, after having finished a 2-year stint with Rick James. The pair remained in contact, even through remarkable career changes and locations.
In January of this year, Larry rang Paul and asked if he would be interested in developing a cable TV pilot, that would feature road tales, but told first hand, interview style, by touring road crew. "In retrospect, it seems like we were developing the idea the whole time and didn't realize it," says Dexter. "We would ask each other -- have you heard from Rob or what's happened to...?
"The character and personalities of people that tour are unique", says McNeny. "We want to capture the accounts of some of the earlier tours before some these guys can't remember what happened."
Dexter adds, "For those who lived out of suitcases, it was not in their interest as part of their work to openly display their craft for public or industry notoriety. Consequently, diaries and photos are scarce -- it's only memory. We want to get them documented, manage an archive and convert the data into various media -- it will be interesting, historical, and entertaining."
ROADCASES proclaims that its mission will be as a self-appointed and voluntary conduit for road stories: successes or failures, unsung contributions, and the varied results from which the touring lifestyle has left many faced with in a now changed and corporate world.
"The way to really make it grow and ensure that the stories include every aspect of our production history, from inception (let's say from 1968), to today, is to log on to www.roadcases.org, register your name, forward the link to someone you know in the business and ask them to register on the site too," says Dexter. "This is a worldwide endeavor".