Category Archives: music

Interview Series: Michi Regier

For my next interview, I introduce Michi. We went to the same high school and worked at the Arizona Renaissance Festival together. I ran around with the stage combat troupe; she played instruments and danced. We also went to the same prom.

prom with bryan, michi, adam, jamie 1996

bryan, michi, adam, jamie

JC: Tell us a little about yourself.

MR: According to the 10,000 hour rule, I am an expert at violin and accounting; I might make it there someday with yoga.  Once upon a time I lived in a yurt.  My dream job would be as a folklorist, just recording and reporting on interesting traditions around the world.

JC: I’ve heard there’s an amazing link between math and music. I haven’t studied much of either, but have you found that you interest in one moves the other forward?

MR: It’s all just patterns to me; music is patterns with soul. I saw Irish music like another crossword puzzle to figure out or language to learn because its shapes and ornaments were so different from classical music. Some people say this perspective takes the magic out — I think finding patterns makes life more interesting, especially when you start to see connections.

Many folk musicians tend to disagree with this link between math and music; they aren’t often “paper”-trained, so they see it more intuitively.  Except drummers. Drummers totally love patterns. “So, you went from a’counting to accounting!” – Antonio Albarran (Gypsy Guerilla Band)

JC: What are the instruments that you play? Are/were you involved with Morris dancing? How did you become a musician?

MR: A) violin/fiddle depending on the outfit. What would I really love to play? The Indian sarod, the Turkish cooking-pot banjo (chumbush), and the musical saw. B) You said we didn’t have to talk about the Morris dancing!!! Except for that one time, when we arrived in England, and there were fireworks and Morris dancers in the middle of the night; it was almost as if they knew we were there. C) I was born this way (maybe not, but it was both nature and nurture in my house).

michi playing music

photo by Jon Baade

JC: So your family is also musical?

MR: Sure! I use every chance I get to show off my dad’s art:

His sculpture is displayed in various galleries and installations around the country. This one has probably had Regiers the longest:

There’s a nice writeup of Dad & Grandpa here:

Mom just retired from school teaching and published a book:

JC: Would you like to share some internet links?

MR: As for my stuff, free music links here:

  • “Videos” are the ones I’ve recorded at home with my looping pedal
  • “Playlists” are things other people have captured of me (see “World,” “Water Street Bridge,” “Festivals,” and “Steampunk”)

  • Couple of my CD’s are available for free here (shhh)

Non-free music available here:

I use twitter for accounting, live-tweeting silly TV and generally non-music stuff:

I’m keeping a blog (sporadically) –

Favorite charities: – I just love what these folks are doing. Great message and high production quality. – donated 30 violins to teaching at an orphanage in Mexico. Earned a forever spot in my heart. – great for the family Christmas cards –

and of course, there’s always micro-lending with Kiva.

bryan, michi, jamie, adam in renaissance costumes at the boyce thompson arboretum

flying blanket studios

(image above: Bob Hoag in the booth)

I got a call from my friend Krystofer who was laying down some tracks for an album at a small recording studio in Mesa, Arizona called Flying Blanket Recording. It was so beautiful inside!

There were little vignettes of mid century modern furniture, doorknobs, and music equipment all over the building. The converted building was built in 1947.

See my whole album here on flickr.

(photo above: credit Chanelle Sinclair)

interview with craig

I’ve known Craig about the same number of years as my husband. They worked together on a computer animated movie. When I began to hang around David, all the animators called me Yoko! Haha! Nowadays, Craig lives across the street from us. Craig is a generous person who likes to laugh and drink good beer.

JM: Tell us a little about yourself

CG: okay! i’ll try {=o) i’m thirty three – the youngest of three boys. pastor’s kids, mom and dad raised us in the church. grew up in a little (1.7 square miles) town in missouri until my family up-and-moved to phoenix the year karate kid part II came out.

i have a lot of teachers in my life: my dad, as well as being a pastor, is a high school teacher, my mom and brother are teachers, and several members of my extended family are teachers and preachers. on top of that, the place i’ve worked for the past ten plus years is filled with teachers – that’s what i get for trying to get out of school as fast as possible i guess.

when i was a kid i wanted to make cartoons. as a teenager that sorta morphed into comic books but by the time i was supposed to be applying for colleges, i was too late to get into comic book school, so i defaulted back to cartoons. {=o) i did get to work on some cartoons in the early aughts with some great people, and hope to work on cartoons again one day.

i tend to stay up late. i put things off. i like movies, characters, cartoons and stories. i like the internet. i’m good at google. i’m pretty good at video games.

i like to eat! and although, not picky, i do tend to get bored pretty easily. so one of the things i like to do is find new places to eat – things i’ve never tried or heard of. i also tend to plan entire vacations around food! oh, by the way, i love to travel!

JM: Where have you traveled? What has been your favorite place? Can you share a favorite travel photo?

CG: well, when i was 16 i had the amazing opportunity to spend a few weeks in europe through the people to people student ambassadors program. we got to go to italy, austria, and hungary – a week in each country. the best part about that trip was being able to spend time with families in their homes. that’s something you really can’t experience most of the time when you go on trips and visit other cultures. more recently, i’ve been trying to do a big trip every year. so for the past few years i’ve been able to go to thailand, vietnam, and hawaii. it’s so hard to pick a favorite place!! but i’m going to say mui né, vietnam. it was just such a beautiful and simple place. the people were very kind … and the food was amazing! {=o)

JM: Can you share some drawings?

CG: sure!

a drawing of batman with my brushpen

a weird crustacean girl i kinda watercolored

a pretty stylized drawing of wonder woman

and a logo for a scooter club some friends of mine are in {=o)

JM: Nice! I really love the wonder woman one!

You are really into obscure bands; what are some of your favorites?


mariachi el bronx – a punk band (the bronx) that has a great traditional-style mariachi side project

kid koala – the most creative turntablist i’ve ever heard

phosphorescent – really great indie rock / country

the rural alberta advantage – a cool indie band from canada that sings songs about canada

pigeon john – my favorite hip-hop rapper guy

carolina chocolate drops – old-timey string / jug band

roar – great local indie rock band

magnetic fields – killer songs, always funny or bitter and heartbreaking; varied styles

why? – indie folk / rock with a dash of hip-hop

christian scott – jazz trumpeter; kind of a jazz / artrock

menomena – just a great fun indie rock band

damien jurado – singer / songwriter mostly in the indie folk genre i guess

slim cessna’s auto club – kind of alternative country punk gothabilly {=o)

but, you know, i like stuff like radiohead and weezer too.

JM: Will you draw a unicorn for me?

CG: sure!

JM: Yay! I love it! Would you like to share an internet link?

CG: oh, wow. i dunno. i have a website that i don’t keep up to date
i like google and twitter

Thanks Craig for participating in the interview series! Ask him any of your questions below!

interview with scott

For my next interview, I chose a volunteer who I didn’t really know. Scott is a person I “know” through Twitter. We follow each other because of our mutual friend Joe. Scott drives a semi around the country and brings bags of potato chips back for Joe. (Joe has a weakness for potato chips. I am not sure if he’s looking for the perfect chip or just enjoys trying all the strange flavors that are available all over the country. My favorite chip is Chile Limon by Lays-pairs well with string cheese. I’m classy like that.) Scott and I had our first real conversation sitting at the high top at Liberty Market about two weeks before this interview so I could get a better sense of what kind of questions I wanted to ask him.

JM: Tell us a little about yourself.

SK: I am an East Coast (Florida-born, North Carolina-raised) Arizonan.

I am 29 (soon 30).

I am the oldest of 4 children (I have 2 sisters and a brother)

I drive a semi.

I LOVE music and I also write everyday (with the rare exception) and also take a camera (cheap point and shoot) with me wherever I go just in case I find something interesting to photograph. I also enjoy Twitter too. And things that have good design.

JM: You are a truck driver. I think that actually sounds romantic-driving the country, listening to music, eating at diners, meeting interesting people…tell us more about it and how you got into it.

SK: I got into truck driving only because I got bored with what I was doing (being a student at ASU) and was tired of not having money and bills for things I didn’t want to have to wait to pay without high interest payments, so I decided that my Plan B (school) was just not working and to go with my original plan (truck driving). I had decided a few years before what I liked and didn’t like and at least wanted to try for an education first. (I do have an Associate’s). But, that didn’t work, so I went to trucking. And that’s what I’ve done for around 3 and a half years now. It’s an okay job. Not too romantic as it IS a job with pressures and deadlines, MOUNDS of paperwork. It’s also essentially a retail job too in the sense it is all about customer service and the irregular odd hours I work. It is a good job though with pretty good pay for what I do. I could say I am proud of what I do, although, there is a few caveats. The stereotype of a trucker does hold true in some respects and it’s a strange culture too. The food is mostly fast food now and a lot of the truck stops are corporate chains. It’s kind of sad in a way.Tthat being said, I still like to find the few not corporate truck stops as often as I can. Usually, they’ll have different or regional food that I’m out looking for. That is why I like my job, I really do like it because I get to visit a lot of places most people don’t. America is a big beautiful place. It has everything. It really does. I’ve been nearly everywhere too, with the exception of Maine and Rhode Island. (I only drive 48 states.) I’ve seen some amazing things too. Lots of sunrises and sunsets. Seen lots of wildlife (a bald eagle in the wild!) and the changing of seasons too, although I don’t like driving in the winter. I’ve also been able to use what I do to visit places too like New Orleans and Salt Lake City and Santa Barbara and go enjoy a few baseball games (both major and minor league) in other cities too. I do like what I do. I’ve seen a lot.

JM: Have you made any friends in the trucking industry? Do you have a “handle” on the CB? (Is that what it’s called?)

SK: Not really. Trucking is still kind of like a brotherhood/camaraderie kind of a thing. Other truckers do talk with one another and usually it’s the same story (management/government regulations/complaining). That has also fallen by the wayside too. No, I don’t have a CB (and yes it is still called a handle). Reason why? There is honestly nothing good to listen too unless if you like listening to misogyny/xenophobia/homophobia/racism. It’s. Awful. When I did have one, this is all I heard. Just terrible. Thankfully, it shorted out and I never got one again.

JM: I’ve heard you’re supposed to flash your brights when passing a semi. Is that true?

SK: Yes and no. Depends on who you talk to. Cars do this if the person is impatient and don’t think I know they’re there. Trust me, I have 6 mirrors, I KNOW you’re there. Trucks do that (or dim their lights) to let the other truck has enough clearance to safely pass one another.

JM: What is your favorite part of the country?

SK: Ah, my favorite place(s) in America? It really depends. My favorite region of the US, by far, is the Pacific Northwest because of the beauty that is up there, particularly the Spokane, WA/Coeur d’Alene, ID area. It’s a perfect balance of city versus rural. Plus it’s green, all four seasons and weather is temperate enough and so are the people. I love it up there. But I’ve also enjoyed driving though the Bronx and watching the Sun start to rise through that part of NYC. It was almost like watching a movie. I also love driving along the Plains and being able to see “forever”. It’s an amazing sight. I also like being on the coast (Pacific, East or Gulf) and the smell of it. I love the smell of the ocean.

JM: You love music. How was that developed in your life? Who are your favorite bands?

SK: Music. Hmm, I’ve always been surrounded by music ever since I was little. Growing up as a kid in the South, it was mostly country that I listened too (we had 6 radio stations) and also growing up in a Christian household we listened to a lot of Christian music too, mostly contemporary Christian music, although my dad still had his record collection which was a lot of party-like 45’s (think Purple People Eater) and Stevie Wonder and his favorite country artist, Ronnie Milsap. Also, I did learn music as a kid, took piano lessons and I can still read (or at least figure out) musical notation. I’ve also taken guitar lessons at least 5 times, but it’s too time consuming, I’d rather enjoy music. That being said, I do enjoy it a lot. I’m always listening to something whether new or old. I’ve been collecting records (CD/vinyl) since about the time I moved here, about 13 years ago. I still love buying CDs mostly because it’s something you can hold onto, there’s artwork, liner notes. It’s much more than just a commodity or something you can download. It IS art. I really do love music though because of the way it can feel and make you feel too. See, I am more of a person who likes how a song is constructed (produced/mixed/built) versus what most people look for in a song (vocals/instruments). I look for what the music through its production and how it was produced is trying to say, what the underlying emotion is. And with that, a lot of the songs I enjoy are by artists who do it themselves or those who do a majority of their song craft themselves. I don’t really enjoy watching some corporate crap like “American Idol” because it is exactly what I hate about the modern music industry. Because there is no talent there, it’s all fake. Too me, it’s dehumanizing. It’s taking the person who has a great idea and warping it into a moment that maybe someone will remember for a few moments and then be forgotten. It’s sad to me. I like music that has more meaning and a lot less steps. I like the artist who shares his demos that he just recorded this morning just to see what other people think. That’s what I like.

JM: Who are some of your favorite musicians?

SK: Some of my favorite musicians/bands are Damien Jurado, Richard Swift, Starflyer 59, Radiohead, but generally I’ll listen to almost anything. *Almost*.

JM: Would you like to share an internet link?


Here’s my link(s):

It’s for The Deck, “The advertising network of creative, web and design culture”.

This is my link because I also like well-designed things and to me the websites served by this ad network are the best. My particular favorites are:, and

Also related: which is also brought to you by the same people who run The Deck. Layer Tennis is a great game of design. See the website for more information. It’s really neat.

Thank you to Scott for volunteering! Please feel free to ask him any questions you have in the comments below!