PM360 recently spoke to Rich Baron, Executive Director, Prescription Medicine Training & Development at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, about what it feels like to rock.
PM360: I understand that not only are you a musician but you also have your own rock band. How long have you been playing music?
Rich: I’ve been singing and playing an instrument probably since I was old enough to sit upright. Today, my main activity outside of my job is as the lead singer and rhythm guitar player in a rock-n-roll cover band. The current band has been together for more than 10 years and we are very active in the Connecticut bar scene. We play at least twice a month, but during the summer that could increase to as many as five or six times a month. The name of the band is SCRATCH and our band website is www.scratchtheband.com. The website is really cool because you can check out photos of the band, see our upcoming gig calendar, view our song list, listen to recordings and even see videos of live performances.
How did the band first come together?
The lead guitar player and I went to college together at Penn State. Freshman year we lived on the same floor, about five doors down from each other. We started playing as an acoustic guitar duo when we were seniors, and continued playing in bars together after graduation. I moved away to California and started my career with Boehringer Ingelheim and then eventually moved back to CT. When I returned, we decided to expand into a full band—and we’ve never looked back.
What do you love most about playing music?
Some people play golf every weekend. I go out and scream AC/DC at the top of my lungs every week, mixed with a little Counting Crows, and it’s really good for my soul. I love music and I love to sing. Other than my family, it really keeps me grounded. Of course, I can drive my family a little nuts sometimes because there is always a tune running through my head and I quote song lyrics a lot.
What’s it like to rock out in front of a crowd?
There is no greater feeling than singing in front of a crowd full of people who are dancing and completely into you and the music. Once you’ve tasted the applause from the crowd, there is no going back.
Do you have any musical inspirations?
I grew up in an artistic family (musicians, artists, dancers, writers, etc.). Of course, there are musicians that I love (and that evolves all the time), but my family has always inspired me and now that I have a family of my own, they inspire me on a daily basis. My daughter is currently taking guitar lessons and she sings. I love to sing with her.
Do you have any interests outside of music?
I love sports, specifically baseball. My son and I have a deal to go to every major league baseball park together over the course of our lives. So far we’ve hit nine of them. I love doing this with him.