Throughout his teenage years, Mike juggled odd jobs that fit into his schedule as a musician. He later joined a band named Maker and toured throughout Europe. “We toured like seven months out of the year. I was broke all the time—I was broke as hell!” After experiencing the musician lifestyle, certain events unfolded and prompted him to move across the country.
I was interviewing Mike while he was serving craft beer from behind the bar in a pool hall off of 6th Street in Austin, Texas. The mood changed. Mike’s childish charm washed away for a brief moment when he confided that drugs, specifically heroin, had devastated his family. Mike’s brother became addicted to heroin and could not escape its grip. Mike elaborated, “Life kinda hit and I moved down here. There’s a lot of heroin (in Amherst, MA). All my friends from high school died. I have Narcan in my truck right now—my other brother committed suicide, you know”.