Ticket Alternative doesn’t just sell tickets, we print tickets and wristbands, too! That’s where Chris Blais comes in. Chris is not only the employee who has been with Ticket Alternative the longest, but, he is also the print specialist behind TA Ticket Printing and EventWristbands! Whether Chris is practicing yoga in the conference room with other employees, dominating at Call of Duty or working diligently in the print room, he continues to be one busy bee! Did we mention he’s in a band and he’s a family man? Let’s just say Chris is one cool dude.
You’ve worked at Ticket Alternative’s companies TA Ticket Printing and EventWristbands for 7 years now! What has changed the most since you started?
Pull up a seat, youngsters, and let Grandpa Blais blow the dust off of his spectacles and tell a tale of the days of taking phone calls to handle box office sales while, at the same time, printing ticket orders in a room the size of the break room. Iain and Jamie would let us have one piece of coal to share among the 7 of us to burn in the oil drum and, if we were extra good, we got Vortex. We didn’t have PlayStation. We didn’t even have a TV, for criminy’s sake! We not only took orders from good ol’ ‘Murica but also from the UK, which made for a fun time of trying to fill out a billing address for Skiff Hill, White House, Patrickstewartshire, Olde Earl Grey, England. The ticket printing orders were emailed to us with all of the lines filled out wrong and we had to rewrite the code like we were Mathew Broderick in WarGames. Times were hard and you kids are lucky. Free Lunch Friday? Morning meeting breakfast? Customer Service training? Self-generating files!? We didn’t have such amenities. Ah, the good ol’ days…zzzzzzzzzzzzz.
What kind of projects do you enjoy working on at TA Ticket Printing and EventWristbands?
I’ve spent the past 4 months or so dabbling in digital to make wristband proofs for customers to approve which has been quite enjoyable. I’ve only been skimming the surface so that’s definitely something I want to delve deeper into this year. I’m also primarily printing wristbands and, along with a few other TA folks, have been learning the unpredictable intricacies of the wristband printers and I always enjoy projects that require a bit of puzzle work.
You’re in a local band called Misery Loves Chachi. How did the band come about?
The lead singer, Nate, and I were in a three piece band called Dave Daniels & The PTA and when that project ended we decided to work out some of the stuff Nate had been writing over the past few years. I was really interested in it as a drummer since the work involved taking complicated digital, computer sounding drumbeats and trying to figure out how to play them acoustically. It has been an intense learning experience and very fun.
What bands had the greatest influence on you when you were growing up?
I was very much a sponge for music when I was growing up. If one of my friends was listening to something I was quick to check it out. Led Zeppelin, The Who, Frank Zappa were bands I picked up from my brother. Otis, Aretha, Sam & Dave, and 60’s girl groups from my dad and Carol King, Doobie Brothers and other 70’s tunes were from my mom. I eventually got into pop, which was everywhere in the 80’s and early 90’s, and then jazz music as I started to learn to play drums. I was kind of starving for music all the time and just constantly had it on and didn’t really care too much what it was…unless it was pop country.
Between work, music and being a family man, you’re a busy guy! What do you do or where do you go to unwind?
Yoga and meditation have definitely brought a little more balance into my life. I’m pretty close to figuring out how to levitate all the way to and from work so I don’t have to go on MARTA.
What upcoming Ticket Alternative event(s) are you most excited for?
I always look forward to Taste of Atlanta, it’s my favorite event to either work or go to.
What is the strangest thing that’s happened around the office?
I’m having a tough time thinking of really strange things happening in the office when the image of Micah in a green elf leotard costume has been horrifically burned into my memory.
If you could live in any other city besides Atlanta, where would you live and why?
I don’t know if I would live somewhere else other than Decatur but I definitely want to travel more. When Dierdra and I take my family band of five girls on the road we will visit all the corners of the world.
Do you have a favorite book? If so, what is it and why?
That’s hard. It’s kind of like asking what my favorite song is… I’m a huge autobiography person so Cash by Johnny Cash and Malcom X by Malcom X are a couple. Pretty much anything by Robert Bolaño. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Many Lives, Many Masters, Iyengar’s Light on Yoga, and Ekhart Tolle’s A New Earth have been very inspirational as well. I will be expecting book reports from everyone on these by next Wednesday.
Your band Misery Loves Chachi is playing at The Masquerade, Saturday February 8. Give us the deets!
We’re playing in Purgatory with Atlanta band The Shut Ups and The Arcs from Athen’s. It will be our first time playing Masquerade and we have some new material to try out so we’re pretty stoked. There will be live zebras.
Here’s the event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/497418650294591/
Just kidding about the zebras.