Heritage Fest At-Home Talent Show… & Tell: All Things Mixed Media with Michael “Rockstar” Wolin

With our anniversary coming up next week, we decided to celebrate the parts that make up the sum — our staff. In that vein, we have decided to showcase their special skills and talents. Within that celebration, we’re sitting down for a virtual beer with our co-workers and doing a deep dive Q&A with a few folks on why they started their craft and what the inspiration is. Next up: Michael “Rockstar” Wolin.

Who are you?

My birth name is Michael David Wolin, but everyone calls me Michael Rockstar. I gave myself the name “Rockstar” about 15 years back. I was a child of the ’80s, and my name was trendy. Michael Jackson, Michael Jourdan, Michael J. Fox, you get the point. As a musician and professional entertainer, it’s crucial to distinguish me from all the other “Michaels” in the world.

What’s your role on the team? The most valuable thing you’ve learned while on the job?

A few years back, I began as a bartender with Angel City, and I’m very proud to say that I am currently an “Assistant Public House Manager.” Including myself, there are three AM’s working the PH: me, Mike Hernadez (another Michael) and John Hayden. For over twenty years now, I’ve been working within the hospitality industry. If it’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that no two workdays are ever the same. Going with the flow and being adaptable is almost a requirement when the goals to help enhance a customer’s overall experience.

What is your unique talent?

Michael Rockstar is an entertainment, musical, performance artist all rolled into one! Most recently, I have been creating some pretty cool mixed media by combining digital and analog elements into all work – including my music, videos, and photos.

How long have you been doing it /or is this a newly acquired skill since quarantine?

I come from a musical family and have been making music for as long as I can remember. In my family, almost everyone can play an instrument, and those who don’t sure know how to clap and sing. It’s just something everyone does. Most Thanksgivings include the entire family busting out the instruments, with a good old-fashioned fam jam session!

I was only starting to create digital artwork a few years back after receiving my first iPhone. Almost all of the art I create is on either an iPhone or an iPad. No photoshop for me. I have built a collection of the digital art tools through the App store for many years now, and my toolbox of effects just keeps on growing!

The only time I’ll use a desktop computer for an art project is when I’m recording a music piece with numerous tracks simultaneously. Otherwise, all other audio is recorded and produced through an iPad.

How did you learn this talent/get into it?

I’m not sure how I learned this talent, but I know why I continue to explore and pursue it. It actually can be tied back to the same reason I love the hospitality, and that magic word once again is “adaptability.”  Just like within the hospitality industry, to be relevant within the digital art community, artists need to be adaptable to the ever-changing technology, which ultimately defines and dictates the mixed media art form. It’s like every time I turn around, there’s another new digital program and I can feel the creative side of my brain pulse with inspiration!

What other talent are you hoping to learn while in quarantine?

I just plan to continue exploring music, video, and art. The majority of my time through quarantine has focused on mindfulness practice and silent meditation. Sending positive vibes, and unconditional love to myself, my family and all the people of the world.

You can follow Rockstar on Instagram @michaelrockstar, or check out his band: www.facebook.com/jointhefun. Cheers!