Beautifully Human / Brandon Bates

Updated: a day ago

As we continue our series today, Beautifully Human...

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We focus on the beauty of humans and the power in their stories…

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Through telling their stories we hope to connect this world. To spread some love and humanity...

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To show a common thread of beautiful humans…

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This week we go to Salt Lake City, Utah with Brandon Bates to hear his incredible story...

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I met Brandon years ago on a gig in Salt Lake. He had some picks he had made and we talked at our table for a while. I just remember from that first night how kind and accommodating he was.

Over the years since then we have grown to be quite close. He drives my ass around Salt Lake when I come into town. Takes me to sit on lion statues at the state capitol. Also takes me to kickass record shops, and badass Mexican restaurants.

What a kind soul Brandon is. He will go over and above to do anything for you. He has a beautiful heart.

Another human I am so fortunate to have as a close friend... We all need friends like Brandon in our lives...

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Let’s all be beautifully human…

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Subscribe to our blog and follow us on Instagram (@wanderlustmoonduo) for our weekly Beautifully Human posts...

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Beautifully Human is now a podcast! Tune in to hear more beautiful stories!

Give us a follow and listen on Apple Podcasts and Spotify!

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#beautifullyhuman #brandonbates #wanderlustmoonduo #stayhuman



Brandon Bates / Salt Lake City, Utah


Tell me a story that shaped your life…


- This is a tough one.  I could talk about my HS Senior Year English/Drama Teacher, Mr. Eaton, who pushed me to complete credits I needed to graduate, due to me slacking off my Junior year.  I could talk about my decision to serve a mission for the church I grew up in, at the age of 19, spending two years in the south talking Jesus and God with those fine folks.  I could talk about returning home from said mission to my parents getting a divorce, and how I learned that even as an adult, that shit hurts, especially when you find out the church you just served treated your mother so horribly. 


I could talk about meeting my beautiful wife, and deciding to get married at age 24 (which is actually considered and old age in Utah lol).  Having to deal with some serious medical issues with my wife before she turned 30, wondering if we will ever be able to have kids. 


I think though I will tell the story of how we decided to start trying to have kids, getting pregnant, and then losing that baby to an Ectopic Pregnancy, which meant losing a Fallopian tube, moving our chances to 50% to ever getting pregnant again.  During this time the song Walk, by Foo Fighters was a huge healing song for my Wife.  Then a few months later we found out we were pregnant again.  We played it very cautious, didn't announce it right away, I even stopped cutting my hair out of superstition.  Then in March of 2012 my beautiful baby girl was born.  This was another chisel in my continuous molding in life.


Tell me a story that almost ruined your life… 


- I think there have been several times where I have been given choices to make, and chose differently, avoiding anything that may have "ruined" my life.  Not to sound like I have lead a totally clean, and straight life, but for the most part I have.


Tell me a story that enriched your life…


- Even though I am no longer actively involved with religion, or really believe in religion and God, my time as a missionary in Louisiana, and Mississippi, talking with the people there.  I learned a lot about the culture there, and the people.  Southern people love God, and love to talk about scripture, and anyone out "preaching" was almost always invited in for a crawfish boil.  I grew a lot there, and can really say that my life was very enriched during my time there.


Tell me a story that enriched another life…


- Working as an Event Staff/Security manager for concerts, and other events, I see a lot of cool things happen, especially when it comes to fans, and artists. Usually someone organizes something special for someone else. One time I was able to be a part of one of these special moments. My sister in law has a neighbor, and their little girl, Brooke, had been battling leukemia. In 2017 they had tickets to Luke Bryan, her favorite country artist. My sister in law let me know, and asked if I could get her a guitar pick, or something like that. I asked our local production manager what it would take to get her into the Meet and Greet. He said to go get her and her mom, and stick them at the back of the line. Done! She was able to meet her hero, and Luke was so sweet with her, and took extra time with her. The way she lit up, made me think, her life had taken on new meaning that day.

Tell me a story of crazy life… 


- Again, not to sound like a Prude, or super straight lace, but anymore, my crazy life is watching my little grow.  Seeing her imagination run wild, listening to the stories she makes up while playing, the songs she makes up.  That is my crazy.


Tell me a story of life…


- See my response about the story that shaped my life.  Seriously though.  I was born to a 15 year old, and put up for adoption. 

My parents adopted me when I was just over 3 months old.  I was raised in conservative, small town Utah. 

When I was 41 I took an Ancestry DNA test, and found my biological sister, and discovered I also have a biological brother. 

Through my Bio sister, I was able to talk to my birth mother, and thank her for choosing to place me for adoption, where I was able to have the great childhood I did. 


What would you want the world to know about you… 


- I don't know how to answer this.  As a late, great friend told me once, "just be Bates".  I have always tried to be a good version of me, and I continue to strive to do that.  I mean I fail a lot at it, but I keep trying. 



What did / do you miss most during covid 19…


- The live music, and being able to take my daughter to shows.  I love to watch her reaction, especially if it is someone she likes.


What brings you the most joy / smile the most... 


- When my daughter discovers something new, something that she loves.  Her genuine reactions bring me joy, and make me smile so big.  I know, sappy answers, but it is true.


If you were given a plane ticket to anywhere, where would you go…


- Ireland and Scotland.  I have always been drawn there, and I used to joke that I must have it in my blood.  Being adopted and not knowing, always meant I could be from anywhere really, despite my birth certificate saying Hispanic.  So I would joke I was Mexican/Irish, or Mexican/Scottish.  I now know the truth.


What brought you to where you are at in life today…


- My dad remarried, and the new wife was going to be moving in to the house.  I chose to move out, and head north to Salt Lake City before she did.  It didn't feel like it would be my house anymore when she moved in. 

Childish behavior at 23, but that is what lead me to meet my wife, get me started in working in venue Security, and to where I am today.  So, thank you, to my late step mother Wendy.  I learned to love you, but you pushed me out of the "nest" a second time.


What is your most prized possession…


- I feel like saying my daughter, but a human, even one you are trying to nurture and care for, really isn't a possession.  I have many collectible items, figurines, guitar picks, tour passes, VIP items, records, but the small portion of my father's coin collection that I held on to, and display in my home office, that is probably my most prized at the moment.


Traveling is my life, and has also saved my life. It shows the beauty of other cultures. tell me a story of your favorite travel moment… 


- When my wife was sick, and struggling with knee issues after that, we never traveled.  within the last few years, we finally started to take trips, and one was two years ago to Seattle.  We all went to see our favorite band, Foo Fighters.  We did the camp out in line with a 6-year-old, toured the city, met up with touring friends, it was one of the best vacations we have taken.  We have been to Disney World 3 times, and I love going there, and seeing the kid light up, but this was by far my favorite trip.


Tell me a story of struggle… 


- I don't talk about this very much, if ever, but I struggle with depression, and sometimes it hits really hard.  I am hardest on myself when I lose my patience with my kid, and I yell.  I get in my head about if I am a good parent, and if she doesn't deserve better. 

Trying to make sure I live up to the person I hear her tell her mother she feels I am, is a struggle at times.  I even tear up now as I type this.  So I fight to stay positive, and I fight to be the best father, and husband I can.  Again though, I fall down a lot, and I fail at it, but I keep moving forward.


In another life, what are you doing… 


- In another life I am not doubting my abilities, and I am taking risks more often.


What is your greatest accomplishment… 


- Getting out of bed on the days I don't want to.  I feel I have a lot more to accomplish in life, but so far it is finding work for event staff during Covid.


What is your biggest fear… 


- Letting my daughter down


What is your biggest regret…


- Letting my daughter down


What do you do for work… and why…


- I run an Event Staffing and Security Branch.  I have always been a protector, felt like I should stand up for the little people, those who weren't big and strong like me.  For a long time I worked a normal job, and worked small venues at night as a "bouncer".  When the opportunity came to run this Branch, I grabbed it.  I love the public interaction, as well as being able to work with the touring crews that come through. 


What was your first tattoo...


- Technically I don't have any.  However, when I was 14 I took a needle and Indian Ink, and proceeded to dip, and poke on my calf.  I attempted to do the Star symbol like Flea has on his wrist.  I didn't know that it would wash away when I took a shower.  There are still a couple of marks left, but they look more like freckles than anything else.


If you had the ear of everyone in the world, what would you say to them... 


- In the current climate we are in, please be open minded, and care for one another.  The arguing, the fighting, needs to stop.  Use your voice, but let's have more discussions, then bickering. 


Connect with Brandon...


Instagram... sinatraking


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