Slim Pickens came from a poem a buddy of mine wrote when we were kids. In the poem, he said, “Slim are the pickens.” My friend was referring to blades of grass, describing how they all look the same, at least until you put them under a microscope. Then not one is the same.

My take away? The poem made me think of people. We all have a story — herstory/history.

I’ve always been drawn to music. However, I can only tell you how I listen to it. I can’t tell you what it means to you. To me, music is books in motion to a rhythm. Hearing someone else’s pain or happiness — or even just the feeling you get from the actual sound of what the artist is trying to emphasize through their words — made me feel like I wasn’t alone when I was younger. You see, up until age 8, I mostly lived in a foster home. I think that forced me to become aware of my surroundings, and people, though without much discipline.

I wanted to use music to tell my story to see if anyone could relate. It wasn’t long before Slim Pickens Records was born, but, well, as you can see, I’m not a rockstar. Luckily, I didn’t need to be.

As the years went on, Slim Pickens evolved. My buddy I mentioned earlier started a brewery, and this idea I had clicked years later. Music is selfish in a way. It’s my ego. It’s my view or my story. One day the whole thing flipped. His brewery made me realize I could use packaging as another vehicle to help people and help support myself in a way that everyone wins. I could also remain creative on many different levels, from ingredients for the juice to label design.

Slim Pickens isn’t about assisting businesses — it’s about the people who start them. The business is just a part of who they are. I meet great folks from around the globe. Since I’m one guy, I wanted to maximize Slim Pickens’ potential with the least amount of effort. I know it sounds lazy, but when you feel like you are all you got in the world, you learn to be a little clever.

The more people we put on our cans to tell their stories, the more people they’ll tell, and over time, Slim Pickens will build its own synergy. It’s important that every story is genuine. Not some bullshit. This isn’t an advertising company. We’re out to uplift our local community and beyond. The owners behind Tampa mom-and-pops will have cans in Russia, and our Russian homies will have cans in Tampa. Organically, their stories will emerge.

Word will spread on its own, and have a good time doing so.

That’s the Ta’veren of Slim Pickens. Our cans are the blades of grass. It was your poem.