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QRD #40 - Happy Father's Day! - June 2009
about this issue
interviews with:
Nicholas Slaton of slicnaton
Shaun Sandor of Promute
Jeremy M Lange, photographer
Chris Bonner of THe BAcksliders
Matthew Kendall of Rogue Motel
BevanHurdof The VeryFoundation
Michael Jarmer of Here Comes Everybody
Chris Williams of Maple Stave
Brian John Mitchell of Remora
Kyle Monday of Carta
Bill Tollner of Amadan
Sacha Galvagna of Carta
RobertBrownof Northern Valentine
Benjamin LÝzninger of LÝzninger
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Interview with Michael Jarmer of Here Comes Everybody 
June 2009

Michael Jarmer has been in his pop rock band Here Comes Everybody since 1986 & has been a father for three & a half years.

Name: Michael Jarmer
Band: Here Comes Everybody
Website: herecomeseverybody.com

QRD – How old were you when you first realized you wanted to be a professional musician?

Michael – Pre-teen possibly, but certainly when I was a high school kid & discovered that I actually had some talent.

QRD – What are a few highlights of your musical career?

Michael – We took small tours from Portland to Los Angeles & back, & we’ve done shows with local luminaries & a slot or two opening for the likes of the Fixx & Moxy Fruvous.  Those were exciting times.

QRD – At what age did you decide you wanted to become a father?

Michael – I was 39.

QRD – What are some positive & negative impacts your family has had on your career?

Michael – Well, it’s slowed us down considerably, because it is more important to us to be good parents than it is pretending we’re rock stars.  So, rehearsals are few & far between.  Gigs happen infrequently & locally.  The songs keep coming though.  We carve out time every month for songwriting.

QRD – What are some positive & negative impacts your career has had on your family?

Michael – I can’t think of any negative ones.  I feel it in my bones, though, that it’s a positive thing for a child to be surrounded by music & musical instruments.

QRD – Have your children effected the music you make &/or listen to?

Michael – I don’t think so.  But fatherhood has worked its way into a lyric or two.

QRD – Have you had problems with the lack of steady money from a musical career providing the security you feel necessary in your household?

Michael – We have always supplemented our musical “career” with what is known in the trade as a “day job.”  & mine happens to be one that I love.  I am a high school English teacher.

QRD – Given the limitations having a family has on being a touring musician, would you have toured more earlier in life if you’d known?

Michael – Probably not.  Or maybe so.  I just don’t feel any regrets in that department.

QRD – Do you think being a father or a musician has a greater impact on your community?

Michael – Being a father, I think, has far more impact, in that I am sure my son will touch as many lives as my music has, if not more, & in more significant ways.

QRD – Would you rather see your son eventually become musicians or parents?

Michael – I don’t want to impose my wishes upon my son.  If he’d rather be a musician than a parent, or vice versa, that is his decision to make.  Maybe it is that he can successfully do both, as I am trying to do.

QRD – Both family & music seem like things that will take up as much of your time as you’re willing to put in.  How do you end up dividing your time?

Michael – I find time for music, enough to satisfy that part of me that can’t go without.  I don’t consciously or deliberately divide the time.  We make time for a rehearsal if a gig is coming & we make time to write once a month almost religiously; but ultimately taking care of our boy comes first, but not at the cost of the other thing.

QRD – What does your son think of your music?

Michael – Our son, Emerson, is 3 & a half.  He recognizes our music, requests it sometimes, can sing along with the words.  Later, he’ll probably think we’re fuddy duddies.  But for now, we have his ear!

QRD – Do you think you could ever do a musical project with your son?

Michael – Sure.  I think so.  As long as he was willing & able.  It would be a nightmare for everyone if it were not a mutually interesting thing to do.

QRD – Any words of advice to young people?

Michael – Which young people?  The children of musicians?  Or to musicians who are children & having children?  To the former, I say, like Joseph Campbell says, follow your bliss.  To the latter, young musicians who are thinking about having a family, I say, wait until you want it really bad, even if it takes you until you’re 39!