Mike Gilligan at the Fake Chapter Records Party

Many years ago I was a college student, trying to figure out what to do with my life. I was studying Literature and Music Theory and I was severely intrigued by the concept of DIY music, zines, and a tumultuous flurry of ideas I had surrounding the way I would earn my living.

I happened to be on track to graduate with a degree in music and needed to secure an internship…

Enter Gilligan.

Gilligan and I met while I jumped into my very first internship at a record label in the backyard of someone’s house in Ocean County NJ. The various mishaps that come to mind here include being schooled in branding, A&R practices, email marketing, and the one-time hilarity of an air conditioner nearly taking out Gilligan’s desk by way of flooding. I got to meet some local radio and music people I had always admired and felt like one of the crew. Some of my side jobs with the label included touring the streets of Philadelphia in a branded vehicle, running to record shops in Manasquan and Red Bank, and picking up photos and packages.

I certainly learned enough and I will leave my story at that.

During the process, I made a good friend who is charming, self-deprecating, and sincere in all he does. Gilligan has been there for me in countless ways, especially through good old fashioned punk rock support during countless DIY music events that perhaps weren’t that amazing to warrant his time but he’s never complained. He helped me figure out that if I wanted my crazy backyard art shows and mini-tours around the states to be a success, all I had to do was put in hard work and treat people with respect. I think he was crucial in teaching me how to network with touring bands and how to throw a great party to boot!

That’s why it was my pleasure to photograph the 15th Anniversary of his record label: Fake Chapter (which, please note, was not the internship I mention above). Every year on 11-11, Gilligan hosts a party and has his bands and friends play.

Gilligan is now a big-shot in the music industry and he runs his record label on the side as something he truly loves. All of the proceeds from the night went to raise awareness for children’s cancer research (ACS), and it was really awesome to see how all the bands have progressed all these years.

Check out Fake Chapter Records and give their bands a listen!

One Comment

  1. Gilligan wrote:

    How sweet. I mean, it’s all true but how sweet. Seriously, I’m speechless. Thanks so much. I’m so happy we’ve stayed in touch over the years. I’m certain that with your talent and hard work you’ll surpass mine (if you haven’t already). Thanks, Gilligan

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