Musician's Survival Kit

As a musician, and a music director , I used to find it so frustrating being  in rehearsal and needing this or that. Or having this stuff floating around in gig-bags, drawers or exactly in the place that they are of no use at all.

To remedy this unprofessional scenario,  I keep in the pocket of my ubiquitous messenger bag, the Musician's Survival kit. It is simply an empty altoid tin with the following materials:

Favorite audio adapter
Foam earplugs
Drum key
Guitar picks
cheap ear buds
3.5mm stereo to 1/4 stereo adapter
Pico drive
Jeweler's screwdriver
SE-11 Credit Card Multi tool
Matchbook striker and matches

You'll also need scotch tape, your business card and a Sharpie

Whilst you are working on de-altoiding the Altoid tin, (they are curiously strong) be collecting the materials necessary for the work. The guitar picks, you can find lying around after a few rehearsals. Also this is a great use for those cheap ear buds you receive with every piece of audio equipment you buy. The multi tool credit card I use is an SE-11 tool from that is just a few dollars. The pico drive is the most optional, and the most expensive, so you may not even want to go that route.

Once you have everything in place, then clean out the tin and write on the bottom with a Sharpie all the stuff you are putting in it. You can also tape your business card to the inside lid of the box. Speaking of tape, tape down the striker of the matches on the inside bottom. It is handy for quick pad repair for a flute, saxophone. Write on the lid the repurposed name of the Altoid tin.

Assemble the kit, and tuck it away. It will amaze you how many time it comes in handy. You will also no doubt receive props from your musicians when you can hand the guitarist a pick, or the drummer a key for a quick tighten up.

Watch this video for more detail on how I put mine together.


Musician's Survival Kit