This week’s Interview Series is featuring Jeremiah Tuhn of Brolester Records. Check out how he got started and what his power animal is!
1. Give us a little background on yourself and your record company.
Well I started the company, officially, in May 2011 with one of my best friends, David Arentson. We’re co-own with him. The idea started in late 2010 though over some beers at the High Life Lounge here in Des Moines. I’ve been friends with David for 7 years now, I met him while I was attending Grand View College (now Grand View University). I was roommates with him for 2 years. When it came to choosing a business partner he was the obvious choice. Not only do we have similar tastes in music but finacially we both can afford to do this from our own pockets. David and I have been musicians most of our lives and have played in many bands, some even together. In our respective bands we both always handled the business part of the band and actually liked doing that.
2. Why did you start this record label?
We started the label because we wanted to be involved in the music scene again but didn’t want to start a band or be in a band because that’s like having 4 girlfriends; someone’s always mad at someone and nobody’s schedule ever lines up. Also, we didn’t want the headache that comes along with managing bands, along with the little pay for all the efforts you do. Then next idea was starting a label. Talks started as a drunken talk one night, and after we sobered up a few days later it seemed totally feesable. The rest is history!
3. How did you choose the creative pun of a name for the record label?
Actually I saw the name painted on a van once and I thought it was hilarious. Another night when we were drunk talking about the label idea I had said something about being Brolester Records and David instintly said “That’s it!”
4. How many persons are involved with the record label?
I co-own the label with David Arentson, other than that nobody else is “officially” involved in the label. We have our bands: Patrick’s Beard & The Rusty Razors (which has one member), Superchief (who has five members), and North Of Grand (who has four members). So I guess they’re involved in the label. We have our friends and family who shamelessly promote us, so they count. Our dear friend Matt Storms who owns Red Rooster Records on Euclid Avenue in Des Moines helps us a lot with promoting our bands in his shop, he gets us quite a bit of sells that way. It also helps that he owns the best record store in Des Moines. Other than that, its really the fans of the bands and people that are fans of what we do. We hope, one day, to be a big operation but right now we’re really ma and pa.
5. You, like, want to be a Canadian.. what is it that attracts you to the Candians?
My love for the Canadians comes from my first roommate at college and dear friend, Mark Gibson of the world famous Gibby Dog (www.gibbydog.com). He and his family just accepted me as one of them. I’ve been to Ontario a bunch of times to visit them and I just love the area.
6. What position do you play in hockey?
I play hockey for the Des Moines Mullets (www.facebook.com/desmoinesmullets) at Skate West (www.sk8westhockey.com) on Thursday nights. It’s kind of a beer league, its very relaxed and fun. I play most forward and to be more specific wing.
7. How many tattoos do you have? What is your favorite?
I lost count of how many tattoos I have nowadays. My body is never complete. I usually try to get tattooed every few months. My good friend, Aaron Alter aka Lurch, does most of my tattoos now but I have work done by a lot of people and hope to continue to get work done by people that I respect. My favorite tattoo is probably my portrait of Jack Nicholson (as Jack Torrance from The Shining) done by Jack Lowe at the Skin Kitchen in Des Moines, Iowa. The Shining is my favorite movie and Jack Nicholson is my favorite actor so that’s why I have that tattoo. My cat’s name is even Torrance because of that movie.
They can email us at: email@example.com. Or they find us online: www.brolesterrecords.com. Facebook:www.facebook.com/brolesterrecords. Twitter: @Brolester. We mainly online take physical copies of CDs since we conduct most of our business from our phones it makes it hard to download MP3s. Our mailing address is on our Facebook page or anyone can email us for it.
9. Who are your favorite local artists?
Some of my personal favorite local artists are: Handlebar, Viva Montesa, The Maw, Stutterin’ Jimmy & The Goosebumps, Jacob County & The Damaged Goods, Superchief (obviously), North Of Grand (obviously). I think there are a lot of bands around here doing things that are great as well. It’s hard to choose my favorites but the above are the ones that I try to see every chance I get. There’s also a band from Minnesota called Red Desert that I absolutely love, and one day I’d love for them to be on Brolester Records. Same with a band from Mass. called Birch Hill Dam. They’re both unsigned and fantastic!
10. What is your power animal?
I’d like to say my power animal is a penguin like from Fight Club, but I’d be lying. I’d also like to say its an orka like Rob Dyrdek’s, but once again…I’d be lying. I’d have to say my power animal is a cat.
11. What’s your best advice to young people persuing their dreams?
Just do it! Don’t rely on someone else to get things done, its you that has to do all the hard work.
Thanks, Jer! Keep bringing Des Moines the music!
Check out the past interviews in this Interview Series, where I interview an artist each week!
Atom St. George – artist, Riverside, California