Mates of State is a band composed of two people—Jason Hammel and Kori Gardner—who happen to be married. And their upbeat, clap-able tunes make marriage sound really, really fun. But things got complicated for the couple when they had their first daughter, Magnolia, four years ago and even more complicated two years later, when they had a second daughter, June. But they didn’t let having kids stop their days of making music and touring—nope, they decided to bring the girls on the road with them. And in their rider, they stipulate that venues provide “surprises for a 2-year-old and surprises for a 4-year-old.” Kori and Jason say people have taken this very, very seriously.
“Promoters would go all out, bringing us bags and bags of toys,” Jason says. “It got to the point where the kids would say, ‘Hey, where’s my surprise?’”
Overall, Kori and Jason saying touring is good for the girls. “They get to see the world and meet different people. They learn to be flexible and adaptable … We get to hang with our kids and show them our passions,” says Jason. “The disadvantage is that they’re missing some things at school and they spend too much time in airports and filthy dressing rooms.” Apparently, Kori writes all about these complexities in a blog called “Band on the Diaper Run.”
This family is the cutest thing ever. I aspire.