Can artists trust their PR agency to spend their time (and money) wisely? How do you know if your representation is doing all it can? What can artists and labels expect from their PR rep? Contrary to popular wisdom, there is such a thing as bad publicity. From unclear subject lines in e-mail blasts to overblown, lazily-written press releases, PR reps sometimes hinder an artist’s career. Whether you’re an artist or a label, make sure your rep is doing their job (promoting you) and helping the media do theirs (spotlight noteworthy artists). Learn effective PR techniques that should be in your rep’s arsenal, and how to track their performance.
Suzanne Cadgene (ka-GENE, like a sneeze) co-founded Elmore magazine with music industry veteran Arnie Goodman in 2004, on a dare. Previously, she established and edited the New York Blues Society newsletter and, in her nearly forty-year writing career, has written some 1,000 articles for 50-60 varied publications including Bride’s, Gourmet, The Economist, Rowing News and The Pulse of Radio. Today, Suzanne serves as Elmore’s publisher and in-house barista.
Involved in various industries including publishing, corporate and governmental consulting, food and real estate, Suzanne owned a French restaurant for a decade and a corporate catering business for two, served as COO of a publishing group specializing in international trade magazines, and has advised the governments of Italy, the City and State of New York, Heinz Corporation, McKinsey & Co., and the Ford Foundation, among others. She’s tired.
A national print and digital music magazine, Elmore covers American music with a history (roots, blues, jazz, rock, folk and country, but no rap/hip hop). Performers participate in or write in-depth articles which connect the dots between genres and offer insights to how music got from the past to here.
HOWARD WUELFING has been immersed in the American underground music scene since the late 60's. After writing for the Village Voice, Creem and Zoo World while at college, he moved to Washington DC after graduation and was part of the emergent punk scene right from its outset writing for the local press, playing in bands, releasing indie records and editting fanzines. Eventually he moved back North in the 80's and took up the publicist's trade at JEM Records, then at Columbia Records and currently with his boutique firm, Howlin' Wuelf Media handling artists like the Swans, Devendra Banhart, Vashti Bunyan, Mike Watt and many others.
Heather West has spent the last 25 years working in the music business in Austin (Touring Attractions, Antones), New Orleans (Black Top Records) and Chicago (Victory Records, Bloodshot Records), with 12 years of experience as a publicist. In 2009, she started Western Publicity, representing clients including the Ponderosa Stomp, Riot Fest, Red Bull, Dead Fingers, Canasta, Ript Apparel, Jack Oblivian, the Melismatics, Tim Larson & the Owner Operators, John Paul Keith, Amy Gore & Her Valentines, Mike Bloom, Miracle Parade, SorryEveryAfter, The Poison Oaks, Emma-Lee, Archie Powell & The Exports, Trapper Schoepp & the Shades, The City Champs, Gorevette, Wiley & the Checkmates, The Everyday Visuals, Antennas Up and the New Orleans Bounce Project.
Since coming to MSO (Mitch Schneider Organization)—one of North America’s top music pr houses--in 2001, Vice President Alexandra Greenberg has broadened the company’s music/lifestyle client roster by expanding its electronic division, while at the same time working with artists in rock and alternative fields. She’s been an integral part of many of MSO’s top campaigns for artist, DVD and soundtrack releases, festivals, events and venues like The Smashing Pumpkins, Jane’s Addiction, KORN, Motley Crue, deadmau5, Paul van Dyk, The Crystal Method, Steve Aoki, Plastikman, David Lynch, Cut Chemist, Junkie XL, Datsik, Feed Me, Borgore, Coachella, Ultra Music Festival, Sunset Strip Music Festival, Lollapalooza International, HARD, IDentity Festival, The Roxy, Re:Generation Music Project, all of the Underworld franchise soundtracks and much more. Other clients Greenberg has represented over the last decade: Pennywise, Long Beach Dub All Stars, Jurassic 5, Goldfrapp, Skinny Puppy, Yaz, Erasure, Primus, UNKLE, Sergio Mendes, Rock The Bells, Paid Dues, Cypress Hill SmokeOut, NOKIA Theatre LA Live, The Viper Room, Meshell Ndegeocello, the Von Bondies, Roger Joseph Manning, Jr., Tiësto, David Guetta, Paul Oakenfold, Sasha, Deep Dish and Mix Master Mike. Prior to joining MSO, Alexandra was a publicist at Los Angeles-based independent publicity firms People’s Revolution and Hoopla PR. She began her career as publicity manager at former label Red Ant Entertainment. Greenberg graduated from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1996, majoring in public relations. Her motto is “You have to create opportunities to get opportunities.”