Melanie Shrawder

Radio Promoter

Melanie channeled a lifelong love of radio into an air shift at Pittsburgh's illustrious non-commercial Triple A radio station, WYEP, while she was a mere freshman at Pitt.

In 2001, she and her then-boyfriend (now husband) took their first vacation together to SXSW. They fell in love with a city that lived and breathed music (and had killer breakfast tacos to boot). They made a decision to move to Austin later that year, and did so, arriving just 12 days before 9/11. Melanie was offered a position at KUT (now KUTX) as traffic coordinator, and after quickly mastering the ins and outs of traffic, she couldn’t keep her nose out of the music department. The station’s management encouraged her enthusiasm by creating the new position of assistant music director for her, and she began working under Jeff McCord, evaluating music for airplay, organizing music meetings, educating the air staff about artists, and securing a live band to perform on air 6 days a week. She also prepared the station’s hosts for artist interviews, advanced engineering requirements, and shepherded guests during their visits. It was an amazing job, and she misses it every day.

In 2006, Melanie decided to move back to the Northeast in order to be closer to her extended family. She explored opportunities in radio and the music industry. Kindly, Sean Coakley--who had been promoting her on records for years--scooped her up and offered to take her under his wing, teaching her the craft of record promotion. She worked in the Songlines office north of New York City for three years, promoting records, building Songlines’ website, and engaging in tour support. Then, in 2009, when she was pregnant with her first child, she moved back to the 'burgh. However, she was lucky enough to be asked to take her job along with her. Going to conventions and festivals has always been her favorite part of working at Songlines, and she’s served as Sean's right-hand to plan dozens of music meeting panels over the years.

[Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.]