Tell us about your kids. What’s it like being a Dad?
I have 2 young kids under 10. My son, Sebastian just turned 9 and I just returned from a school camping trip with him. He’s a huge jock – WAY into basketball (Clipper Fan) and baseball (Dodger fan), and starting to get into Football much to my chagrin. He’s also been taking Drum and Violin lessons for the past year and finally starting to get into both and now wants to learn to “DJ.” My daughter, Lucia is 5 and 1/2 and like most 5 year old girls, she’s obsessed with pink stuff, My Little Pony, Strawberry Shortcake, Frozen, dresses, and accessories of any kind attainable. They’re both pretty damn awesome.
Talk to us about your parenting style.
Style? Hmmm, I think Parenting and Style can sort of be oxymorons. It’s like the moment when your friends who had kids before you confessed they were buying their first Mini Van and you all cringe. I would say I’m a pretty laid back parent. I tend to be the “good cop” and my wife the “bad cop” – which she really loves (not so much). I try to make time in the day for my kids, dropping them off at school, picking them up if possible, taking them to other activities like baseball practice, dance, games, bringing them by the office, etc. It’s important to be there.
What’s the one thing you cannot live without as a Dad?
Sirius XMU – If it weren’t for XMU my kids would most likely be listening to horrible Pop music all the time and driving me crazy by signing Katy Perry “Firework” over and over – instead my 5 year old was humming “Heart Shaped Box” because they heard Father John Misty cover it on XMU Sessions. Granted they’re still all over that Mark Ronson/ Bruno Mars track, but that track is catchy as hell.
You founded Filter Magazine back in the day, now you have FLOOD Magazine and the Anthemic Agency. Talk to us about the constantly changing music industry, as well as the latest with Anthemic.
I think the key to surviving in music, or in entertainment for that matter is to be flexible and malleable to a degree and to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to emerging technologies and what your audience wants. When we launched FLOOD back in October of last year, we focussed solely on digital for the first 6 months to really help develop and build our audience organically, but while being aggressive with content, promotions, events, etc to build our profile. We only just now are launching a print edition, which we consider more of an art book than magazine due to overwhelming demand from both readers and advertisers. We know people still admired PRINT, but I think we took that for granted a bit when I was running FILTER and it’s nice to see people really do still care about quality writing and publishing.
You are one busy Hip Daddy. How do you manage the demands of work with the responsibilities at home?
This kind of follows suit to question #2…I’m out of town so much for work, the only way I get to see them is by making more time in the few days I am around and trying to save weekends for family time whenever possible. When FILTER started, I didn’t have any of the pressures from FAMILY life pulling me away from work so I would just work around the clock. Now I try and work smarter and have an amazing support staff which I trust completely working with our clients and making sure things get done when I’m out. That is a must if you ever want to have a chance at managing a business and balancing that with family time.
Talk to us about raising children in LA.
It’s expensive! Schools are challenging, the pace is pretty hectic and commutes are brutal. That’s why it’s key to live and work in a community that is all close together. My house, daughter’s pre-school, and office are less than a mile apart – which drastically cuts down on commute time and enables me to ride bikes to drop her off at school on some mornings and to run out to catch her at dance class occasionally. The key (like in any marriage) is keeping the wife happy. Traveling works against you for that, so cutting down on time away and having an office close to home to allow you to spend as much time as possible with your wife and kids is essential. But yeah, the reality is it’s expensive as hell. Don’t plan on early retirement if you plan to raise kids in California.