The Decaturian is Millikin's student-run newspaper. The opinions reflected may not be those of Millikin as an institution.

The Decaturian

The Decaturian is Millikin's student-run newspaper. The opinions reflected may not be those of Millikin as an institution.

The Decaturian

The Decaturian is Millikin's student-run newspaper. The opinions reflected may not be those of Millikin as an institution.

The Decaturian

Professor by Day, Rockstar by Night

Professor+by+Day%2C+Rockstar+by+Night

Mike Hollis-George and his wife, Jaqueline Hollis-George. Full-time workers by day and band leaders by night.

Mike is an English professor at Millikin, and Jaqueline is a DCFS attorney, yet the pair find time to play in a band, which started when Mike was searching online and found a Craigslist ad. 

After responding to a Craigslist ad, the band ended up recruiting other members. But the band has been through many iterations, people have left, and many have joined. The band now has four members: Jim Hollis, Mike Hollis-George, Jacqueline Hollis-George, and Steve Dunn.

“It took a long time, as we’ve had some real assholes in the band,” Mike said. “Once you get a group of people who genuinely like each other, it’s kind of, you know, on the weekend you just hang out.”

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Jaqueline and Jim are a father-daughter duo who just played Golden Fox Brewing on Saturday, March 9th, 2024. Not only did Jaqueline and her father play, but Mike stepped in for a couple of songs as well. 

They have a wide range of songs they perform, all of them being covers. 

“I’m bringing in some Foo Fighters stuff, but then there is John Denver and Chris Stapleton, so there’s some country stuff in there and some southern rock like Lynyrd Skynyrd,” Mike said. “Basically, the stuff that we like is the stuff that we do.”

Mike and Jaqueline have always been immersed in the world of music. Jaqueline began playing the guitar at the ripe age of 13. 

“I think I was maybe 13 or so when I bought my first guitar, and then I kind of set it aside for a few years and didn’t really do much with it,” Jaqueline said. “And then when I turned 16, I went back to it, and I just did kind of my own thing. I would play open mic nights.”

Mike had a similar experience; he has also been into music from a young age. 

“I started playing in 1982,” Mike said. “My friend across the street, Paul, played piano, and we thought we should start a band.”

Both Jaqueline and Mike were exposed to instruments and music from a young age, and they are now keeping that tradition up with their two children, four-year-old Orion and two-year-old Rory. 

“They both love music,” Mike said. “We play a game in the car —I’ve got [SiriusXM radio] in the car— and we listen to the Lithium station, and [Orion] can name every song and band that comes on.”

However, having children and being in a band is hard work. The two sometimes bring their children to the family-friendly Golden Fox Brew when they play, but other times they have family members watch their children. The real problem is when they need to practice in their house. 

“You can’t really practice in the living room with the kids because they’re coming and strumming on the guitar,” Mike said. “So, it’s a balancing act.”

With raising two children and having a full-time job, Mike and Jaqueline have to be careful about time. 

“There’s all of the music equipment, and there’s my computer,” Mike said. “I will grade five to seven papers, turn around, and play guitar, grade five to seven papers, turn around, and play guitar.”

For Jaqueline, playing music is something to do in her free time when she’s not thinking about work. 

“It’s just like a way to kind of relax, hang out, and just enjoy some free time,” Jaqueline said. “I’m glad I have been able to continue to incorporate it into my life as I have gotten older and started my career.”

Mike’s favorite part about being in a band is its separation from what he does for work.

“For me, [the band is] something very different than what I do with literature and publishing,” Mike said. 

Although they have a lot on their plate, the couple maintains their life and work schedules by helping each other out whenever they can. 

“We’re a partnership, we really do split up everything that needs to be done,” Mike said. “There’s no way you could not do that.”

Although many adults abandon their dreams and hobbies for their work lives and children, Mike and Jaqueline found a perfect way for them to have the best of both worlds. 

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About the Contributor
Anna Quick, Writer
Writer '23-'24

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