Hi Jeanine, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
After many years of playing acoustic guitar in church, studying classical piano, practicing saxophone, and performing in many bands, I knew music was an essential part of my life. I graduated with a B.A. degree in Hospital Administration and another degree in Respiratory Therapy.
During college, I worked at Santa Rosa Children’s Hospital for 6 years and when my children went to Pre – K, I left the hospital and became employed at their school as a music teacher. I started day trading as a way to make money on the side. A couple of years later, I help finance a business with Marius Perron and we manufactured a product called the Russian Dragon. I solder motherboards, bought parts from around the world, marketed, and operated the financial side. When we sold the company, I started a business teaching keyboards at an elementary school where my children attended. The principal invited me to put a band together for a talent show. The year was 1999 and Gunpowder Soup was born. I could see market potential for a great cover band in the wedding and corporate industry.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Has it been a smooth road? Not at all! Since 1999, it has been a struggle to position and maintain Gun Powder Soup’s hierarchy in the music entertainment business. The music industry is mostly made up of men so women have to work harder as musicians and managers. If you are strict with your business decisions, some people will call you something else besides a good manager.
Female musicians have a really hard managing child care and guilt. Thank gosh I had outside help with child care (Sandy and Dr. Barnes) when I had to be at a wedding for 9 hours. My children resented me for working weekends when everyone else was socializing. My life was Gun Powder Soup.
Covid was a disaster for all bands but I was able to move Gun Powder Soup’s contracts to 2021, without losing any client, and we were able to play private ranch contracts in the winter of 2020.