Not 9-5, Rhythm and Rum

I’ve Never Had a Normal Job

I’ve never had a normal job or a normal boss. I don’t believe anybody really has. My first job was at a grocery store, where my bosses were so traditional mom ‘n’ pop that it felt borderline paranormal. I went after school, spending my evenings helping customers and doing typical grocery store work, like making sure all the cans are facing the right direction and selling booze to my underage peers at a 30% mark-up. It’s been years since I’ve set foot in the grocery store, and I’ve been through almost a dozen bosses since then.

Some days I’ll be at the office, blogging, because apparently that’s part of my job, and my headphones are throbbing in my ears, and I’m thrashing my head around, and my fish is giving me that “are you fucking kidding me with this shit?” look, and my cactus is giving me that “I’m a cactus” stare, and I have to acknowledge that my work history isn’t as normal as I would like to claim.

At this point whatever song I’m listening to will come to a close, and as the next one begins I hear a familiar voice.

That’s my former boss Kristy and her husband Andreas (she picked him up in Germany during her band’s European tour, a story so sexy that I can’t even handle it). You can find her music on Pandora, or in Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 3, and from my understanding if you go to the right club DJs are still spinning her tracks. I worked under Kristy for a summer internship at her record label. It was the kind of place where every day was a surprise, because Kristy is the kind of person who brings something new and original to the table every day.

Kristy went from being the front-woman of her own band, The Azoic, to being the president of her own label, Nilaihah Records. She didn’t pull that Madonna bullshit and try to keep shaking her ass until she was in a nursing home, she got entrepreneurial, because that’s what real babes do (although I saw her perform at Skully’s in Columbus about a year ago, and she was so sultry I had to pour my drink on myself).

My time with her and Nilaihah Records is where I started learning about the music business, and also about marketing and promotions in general. It laid a foundation for later work with a music publisher in Florida, and is the reason I can still work in the music industry today. Whenever an Australian DJ fucked up on methamphetamines calls me at three in the morning  asking if I have any new tracks, I think of her.

She’s the reason I’m fortunate enough to have phone conversations with TV reps who say things like “I would offer you a line of coke if you weren’t in a different time zone.”

I’m truly blessed.

Currently Kristy continues to run the label while helping her husband run Columbus rock bar The Shrunken Head. I still haven’t found a bar or music venue in Phoenix that brings the same edge and personality as this place, because it’s the atmosphere that only a team like Kristy and Andreas could create. It’s dark but inviting and loud but comfortable, and I never had a bad night there.

She’s the kind of boss who would put a bottle of wine and a stack of documents on your desk, and order that you finish both of them by the end of the night.

One year when I was having an awful New Year’s Eve (does anybody ever have a good one?), we sat out on the patio of The Shrunken Head and drank and gossiped until three in the morning.

I may not get to see Kristy every day like I did when I worked with her, but sometimes she sends a package, and I open it to find swag like this.

ad inferna silent auction null device azoic nilaihah


But hey, you didn’t come here to read a bunch of stupid words. You came here to look at pictures of my past employers looking hot while shaking your ass to some wild dance music. Lucky for you I embedded some of my favorite Azoic songs.

The Azoic – Conflict
Conflict is one of The Azoic’s most popular songs. It can still be heard in night clubs and alternative stations around the world, on Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 3, and in the memories of more of my hook-ups with Abercrombie “models” (store employees) than I would like to admit.

The Azoic – Obsession
I feel terrible about this, but this has always been my favorite Azoic tune. Why do I feel terrible about it? Because it’s a cover of a popular 80’s song, so it feels like I’m cheating. But I don’t care, because this cover is amazeballs, and as this song came to a close during the live performance I saw a few years ago, I melted inside.

To learn more about Kristy, her music, and her businesses, read this recent article about her in 614 Magazine.


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