What is it like to be a female roadie? Tana Douglas, who began her career when she was a teenager, tells her story in the new book Loud. She set up for AC/DC as they rose to stardom, and was stage manager and tour electrician for Elton, by then a household name.
While she felt close to some AC/DC members, that wasn't the case with Elton. At times, she thought of him as a diva. But Tana did appreciate sound checks, when the musician was more relaxed and joking around. And she felt a connection upon realising they were both unhappy with their personal relationships.
Tana is candid about other struggles as well. For a time, before joining the TASCO production company, she was homeless. Yet the Australian native was welcomed at nightclubs, where she hung out with the likes of Ginger Baker and some of the Rolling Stones.
There's a nice array of photos in Loud of artists Tana worked with, including the Rocket Man, the Police, Iggy Pop, and Suzi Quatro. In the case of the latter, the roadie was once mistaken for the singer. A fan had fainted, then woke up and saw Tana, who wore a black leather jacket, like Suzi. So when he came to, the concertgoer proclaimed his love for her; then promptly passed out again.
At the end of the book, the writer remembers a number of notables who passed away. One is Keith Moon, who gave Zac Starkey drum lessons (with Ringo's son eventually becoming the Who's drummer). Others are Johnny Halliday and George Harrison, who both flirted with Tana; Bill Graham; Swampy, who helped Douglas get her start; and Dee Murray, who was Elton's bass player.
Learn more about Tana by checking out this site's latest Cheryl's Specials.
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