Like father, like son. Eric Church didn’t want to leave his eldest boy behind, so he let him join the tour lifestyle to gain some insight on the music industry in a personal way.
While Boone may only be a mere five years old, his proud papa let him join the ranks of the other roadies to get to know more about life on tour. Taking after his famous dad step by step, he’s gotten a hang of doing what he knows best: making sure his father hits the stage on time.
“Choir Wrangler is what he does, but every day his job is, the choir rehearses in a room, a separate room. So, he’ll go in and be around Jill, who’s another person on the tour who works with us, it’s Boone and Jill, they’re the choir wranglers,” Church explains. “And Boone’s got a radio, he’s got his flashlight, he’s got a little work belt and his pass, he goes in there, and he’ll make sure that when the choir’s ready to go, it’s his job and Jill’s job to move these teenagers – he calls them teenagers – with flashlights over to where the show is.”
While that may be Boone’s official job, he has also taken on the responsibility of checking on his dad from time to time.
“Now what Boone proceeds to do is call me the entire time to see how close we are. My road manager, my tour manager, said, ‘I’ve been trying to get you on stage on time for a decade, and your son has a better chance of that.’ Because Boone, you tell a five-year-old we’re getting close, and you put it back down and 20 seconds later, ‘You comin’?’ ‘We’re getting close.’ But you know, it’s this constant, he’s wearing me out,” he says with a laugh. “So, we do get to the stage quicker than we used to, but his job is to get them up underneath the stage and then up the steps on the stage; he waits at the bottom, they come back off, and he escorts them to where they need to go. He’s helping out, and he’s having a big time with it.”
Boone knows how to play the game, though, as he’s figured out the means to hustle for his hard-earned cash he receives after every show. While the work doesn’t come cheap for Church, he appreciates the dedication his son has for his newfound talent.
“About three weeks into the tour, [Boone] goes, ‘Dad, I really don’t like my job.’ And I said, ‘Well, son, a lot of people don’t like their job.’ I said, ‘The important thing is you’ve got to do your job.’ I said, ‘What don’t you like basically?’ He said, ‘Eh, it’s boring, and I don’t get paid.’ And I said, ‘Okay, did you have catering? Yeah. Do you have a nice bus to ride on? Yeah.’ I said, ‘Well, you got paid.’ He said, ‘Well, yeah, but the band gets paid.’ So, I humor him. I said, ‘Okay, Boone. I’m gonna humor you. How much would you want to get paid.’ He goes, ‘$4,000.’ I said, ‘A show?’ He goes, ‘Yeah.’ I said, ‘How ‘bout a dollar?’ like that. He let me negotiate, and we agree on $10 a show, and I shake his hand, and I’m thinking, ‘Good God, I just got hustled.’ So, I shake his hand, and as he’s walking away, he goes, ‘That’s $30 for the weekend, right?’ [laughs] I thought, ‘You’ve got to be kidding,’ you know? But it was just a fun little moment that he hustled me,” Church explained.
Fans can check out Church (and Boone) out on the road during the Holdin’ My Own Tour throughout the spring. Ticket information can be found on Church’s website.