If you’re looking for an interview with a BEC Recordings or Tooth & Nail Records recording artist or author Christa Banister, chances are that Lori Isaacs-Mahon of Overture Media is your go-to girl. Working out of her Nashville home, Lori has been working in publicity for six years with artists such as TobyMac, The Afters, Mandisa, and The Jonas Brothers (at the very beginning of their career). Amazingly supportive of Backseat Writer, Lori has hooked me up with Take 5’s, interviews, and review materials. So instead of arranging another Take 5, I asked her to answer a few questions herself.
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Why did you decide on a career in publicity?
I’ve always had a huge love for music, specifically Christian music based on what it can do in one’s life. During my sophomore year in college and after not having declared a major, I began researching music industry careers. I stumbled upon an article on public relations in the music industry and was hooked!
What is unique about publicity in the Christian music industry as opposed to other areas of promotion?
As a publicist I get to share someone’s story not just their music. With Christian music, there is so much more substance and depth in a story because of the subject matter. I love how sharing an artist’s story with a media outlet then directly impacts individuals across the world. I’m so behind the scenes, but such a tool for God to use. I view myself as an extension of someone’s ministry.
How do you go about promoting an artist that you don’t like personally or musically?
I always try to approach the project with the mindset that there is someone out there that loves this music or artist, and it is not my personal opinion that matters. Now with that said, I have been very fortunate to not have to work with an artist that completely disagreed with my beliefs. I hope that I am always able to represent artists that I truly believe in. I don’t want to take on clients just because — I want to pursue it with a passion for that project.
What’s on your desk at this moment? (Don’t clean it to answer this question!)
Ha-ha! Fortunately, I just cleaned my desk last week! Currently I have my computer, four picture frames of my family and fiancé, a candle, stacks of papers, GMA schedules and hot tea.
What is one misconception that people have about your job that drives you crazy?
People don’t get my job and what I do. They either think I get songs on the radio or actually write the articles in magazines myself. Or they’ve seen movies or TV shows with a “publicist” and think that is who I should portray — I am NOTHING like a pushy, aggressive, don’t care what I do to get coverage publicist.