Baca: You guys also took a tremendous amount of pride in the charity work you took park in over the years, most recently with the holiday CDs. Why was that always important for you?
Schroeder: Musicians don’t have a lot of money to throw at people that need some help, but if they can use their talent to help, they’re almost all willing to go through hell and high water to do so. That’s what we did. Shjon Podein instilled that in me back in the day without even trying — just by being who he was, and I foisted it on all the guys in the band over the years, and they were all great about it and just as proud of it as I am. I hope people remember us for that as much as the music.
The Christmas CDs were so much fun, and we raised a lot of money. The collaborations we were able to do were some of my greatest memories in the band. 9News and King Soopers were wonderful in doing all they did these first two years. We are going to continue these in some form, and try to really take it to the next level in terms of raising money for hungry people here in Colorado. Stay tuned …
Baca: Can you catch us up on your other big endeavors over the years, past and present — from Brendan’s Pub to the coffee roasting to the Mountain to …
Schroeder: I’ve always had a bunch of jobs — I was lucky enough to bartend at some great places back in the early days of Opie, and I always had a bunch of other side gigs going. I had a coffee company, tried my hand in a few other ventures, but I’ve been at the Denver Police Activities League since 1999 now, since 2005 working full-time. We provide athletic leagues and other opportunities for mostly inner-city kids here in Denver. I love it, and I’m driven to do more for these kids like I once was for playing music. These kids are all wonderful, and unless we help them along, many won’t have a chance. The minority graduation rate in DPS is around 30 percent. Can you even conceive of how bad that is? And these kids are like anyone else in the world. Bright, happy, wonderful smart kids that need some positive activities to participate in. PAL helps do that, and I want to be there and grow our programs for a long, long time.
Baca: With every other band that breaks up, it’s consistently fair to assume that there will be a reunion of some sort 1-5 years down the line. Have you thought about that? Are you ready to say that, “Yeah, that’ll probably happen.” Or that it definitely won’t happen?
Schroeder: I would tend to doubt it. Part of me would have liked to do a big farewell show, but I’m actually very glad we ended things the way we did. I think the band has a place in our memories and it’s a good place. I’d be surprised if we played any kind of a reunion show, but I’d be equally surprised if in whole or part you didn’t see us working together on different projects over the years. I’ll say it again, the guys in my band are the most talented and best guys I’ve ever met. I’d have been lucky to have been able to sit in with them once, let alone be partners with such talented and wonderful people.