Jay Baker

One Of Reveille's New Members

When were you born? May 2nd, 1969

Where did you grow up? Tucson

When did you move to Tucson? Most recently in 2010. I moved back from San Francisco, where I did my field work.

What brought you to Tucson? I came back to write my dissertation.

What do you do for a living? I work at Trader Joe’s as a sign artist.

How long have you been with Reveille? Just joined this season!

What motivated you to join? I had often thought about joining, but Shawn, who is a friend of my fiancée, was at the house for a party, and we were all singing in the living room. He asked why I hadn’t auditioned for the chorus, and I remembered suddenly that he was Reveille’s Director. I had thought about auditioning for some time, and hadn’t made the connection. So I decided a couple weeks later that I didn’t want to miss out anymore and contacted him to see when I could try out.

What keeps you coming back? I love to sing, and I love being able to do it without thinking I am annoying the people around me. There are few things I know that bring me the pleasure that singing—and especially singing with others who love it as well—brings me. Over the last couple months it’s also become something else, more about bonding with the other guys in Reveille and being annoying together.

If you could pick any song for Reveille to sing what would it be? Something from Scala and the Kolacny Brothers, like their choral cover of Radiohead’s Creep  (www.youtube.com/watch?v=axrqVfuGHh0) or their cover Damien Rice’s The Blower’s Daughter (www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFYYkNacjaw&index=3&list=PL9E6B395665EB6EA4).

What is your fondest Reveille memory so far? I don’t have a great deal to choose from (I wasn’t able to attend the Retreat), but the First Outreach I was a part of (at Universalist Unitarian) was amazing. There were about three points when we would all nail some beautiful chord, that I got choked up (and then screwed up the chord).

When you were a little boy what did you dream of being when you grew up?  An Actor/Artist/Rock Star. Or maybe a Rock Star/Actor/Artist.

What do you like to do for fun (besides Reveille)? I’m kind of a nerd and a homebody. I read a lot, I cook and bake and I love to go camping.

What's your favorite place to hang-out here in Tucson? Besides my house? Probably somebody else’s house. Otherwise, I’m really more of a pub guy than a club guy, and I enjoy places like Tap & Bottle. 

Besides choral music, what kind of music do you enjoy listening to?  My tastes are very eclectic, and run from Pop to Opera, Jazz to Folk, and pretty much anything from the 80s.

What's your biggest regret? Listening to those who told me when I was younger that the things I loved—like art and singing and acting—were frivolous and irresponsible, and eventually forced me to put them all aside.

What's your best asset? My intelligence and my wit. My calves aren’t too bad either, even though they are two different sizes!

If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be? I would eliminate the Doubt.

If you could go back in time and change one decision you made when you were younger what would that be? Back when I was fifteen, when I spent the night with that new friend from the wrestling team… I wouldn’t stop him from kissing me. And if he didn’t follow through, I would kiss him.
If you could choose one person (any person living or dead) to spend an evening with who would that be? Jesus. Not because I’m religious (I most definitely am NOT) but because I’m sure he must have been a fascinating person, advocating love millennia before his time, and I always wanted to know what he said directly, not what other people claimed he said. I’ve also wondered if there are things HE wrote locked away under the Vatican. I wonder if he had any idea what he would start, and if he would be horrified by what has been done in his name. Phillip Jose Farmer speculated about this in his SciFi novel Riverworld, and I’ve thought about it ever since I read it in my 20s.

If you won the lottery tomorrow how would it change about the way you live (besides making a nice donation to Reveille)? I would quit my job and work on my dissertation full-time. And then I wouldn’t worry about taking the first professorship I was offered.

Who do you admire the most?  My grandmother. She still doesn’t take any bizness at 92.

Any parting words you’d care to share? Are we parting?? I’m pretty sure I just got here….