GET TO KNOW: MUDDY PAW PR PUBLICIST ERICA D’AURORA
This week we talk to music publicist Erica D’Aurora. Erica works at Muddy Paw PR and was one of the first publicists to support this blog. Erica talks about Muddy Paw, what she does as a publicist, life in quarantine, and why music has always been a powerful influence in her life.
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: Hi, Erica thanks for taking the time out! First off, can you tell me why you love music?
ERICA D’AURORA: Gosh, where do I begin! Music is everything. It’s one of the most powerful forces in the world and the infinite ways in which words and sounds can intertwine is magical. Music can create change, it can help you heal and let go. It’s your best friend. It’s medicine.
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: What was the first band or album that you first became obsessed with?
ERICA D’AURORA: There have been so many artists and albums that have totally captivated me, but I think the first artist that really hooked me in was Bruce Springsteen. There has been no other artist who has so completely enveloped me in a story, and his incredibly use of imagery and poetry is absolutely breathtaking. But long story short, his songwriting is epic and I could go on for days about how amazing he is.
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: We connected because you work in music PR. How did you wind up pursuing that as a career?
ERICA D’AURORA: Before I started my music blog Musical Notes Global, I had no idea what PR was. But as my blog grew, and I started getting submissions from publicists, I started learning more about the field and it really intrigued me because it combined two of my biggest passions: music and writing. After two years blogging, it began to just make sense to pursue a career in PR, and the transition was basically seamless. Now that I’m a publicist, I’m so grateful to have gone into the field with blogging experience first because it’s given me so much more insight into what journalists are looking for when they receive submissions and what they don’t like or find useless in pitches.
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: Can you describe to my readers what one does in music PR for those that might be unfamiliar?
ERICA D’AURORA: PR is always so hard to describe, and I think it’s because we do so much. A band will hire a publicist to secure interviews and features so they can establish their brand, set themselves up for new opportunities, and get introduced to new listeners all over the world. But honestly, PR is so much more than that.
(cont.) Publicists work tirelessly to get their clients as many of those features as possible, but in many cases, we also end up becoming their sounding board. We’re there for them to bounce ideas off of and to encourage them to keep going when they feel like giving up. We’re there to listen and to help take the weight off their shoulders, and we love helping them grab hold of those ideas that have been floating around in their heads for so long and finally turn them into realities. Personally, I feel honored to be along for the entire ride with them, through the good days and bad days, and to have the opportunity to watch all of my artists grow. There’s no better feeling in the world, and I feel so lucky to say that there’s not a day that goes by that I don’t love my job.
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: How did you end up working at Muddy Paw PR? What has been the most rewarding aspect working in PR and working at Muddy Paw?
ERICA D’AURORA: I actually first encountered Muddy Paw PR through my blog, and I had the pleasure of getting to know the company’s CEO Angela Mastrogiacomo as we were in touch about features for her artists. In my early days blogging, I supported many of Muddy Paw’s artists, and our relationship just continued to grow. Plus I really admired the approach Angela took when pitching her clients and I adored the way she ran her agency.
(cont.) When I realized that I wanted to seriously pursue a career in PR, Angela had mentioned that she was looking for interns, and I let her know that I was interested in taking her up on the opportunity. I ended up interning with Muddy Paw for about three months, and then transitioned into the role of Junior Publicist. Last fall I was promoted to Senior Publicist and I can honestly say I’ve never loved my job more than I do right now.
(cont.) One of the most rewarding aspects working in PR is just being able to work in a field that I love. Music is in my veins, and it’s always kept me going through the darkest days and has made the best days even brighter. To be able to participate in the music industry in such a fun and impactful way is truly one of the greatest privileges of my life, and I never take it for granted. I love meeting and working so closely with artists of all genres, and I love being that advocate for them so they can continue to build a successful career.
(cont.) When I started working at Muddy Paw, I finally felt like I found a home and it confirmed for me that the music industry is where I belong. What makes my job even better is that I get to work with Angela, who is now one of my best friends!
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: What is the best advice you can give to someone who wants to work in the music industry in PR?
ERICA D’AURORA: PR is not for the feint of heart. You have to be willing to give your all, 150% of the time. There are many days that you’re going in a million different directions, and there will even be days when you feel like giving up, but it’s then, especially, that your passion for music and for helping artists work toward their goals is what’s going to keep you moving forward. If you have a genuine passion for your work, success will follow.
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: What do you think the future of the music PR industry looks like after COVID?
ERICA D’AURORA: Luckily, many publicists (like me) work remotely 99-100 percent of the time, so our work habits have stayed the same for the most part throughout the pandemic. In some ways, I actually think the pandemic has brought about some positive change, like giving bloggers in New York access to virtual events and press conferences in Los Angeles that they wouldn’t have been able to attend otherwise, for example, and opening up opportunities for more video interviews held over Zoom. But of course, the pandemic, as we all know, really devastated the industry, and the canceling of live shows and events has certainly affected all of us in so many ways. However, the music industry is also resilient, and it’s already proven that it can adapt to the toughest challenges, so I think the music PR industry will continue to thrive post-COVID.
THE RECLUSIVE BLOGGER: Last question, recommend a piece of pop culture that has kept you sane during quarantine?
ERICA D’AURORA: Oh gosh, another tough question! Ok, I’d say Anne With An E on Netflix. The series is absolutely stunning, the photography and landscapes are gorgeous. And the storylines and casting? Perfection! You totally get lost in Anne’s world and it’s been a great escape from reality.
Next Friday we ‘Get to Know’ Independent Publicist Alison Piron.