Industry Spotlight: Catching Up With M:M Music’s Meg MacDonald
INDUSTRY SPOTLIGHT: Every month we will introduce one of our valued clients, partners or industry friends. Be on a lookout for a lot of cool music industry insiders!
Taking its name from owner Meg MacDonald’s initials, M:M Music embodies the staying power and reach of the industry’s most successful independent promoters. With a particular foothold in AAA, MacDonald’s team has enjoyed recognition time and again as “Independent Promotion Company of the Year” at Triple A’s annual summit in Boulder, with votes coming in from programmers and label reps. M:M’s team of music fans and promoters includes herself, Rene Magallon and Crystal Ann Lea focusing on the Triple A Commercial, Non-Commercial and Americana formats with Ben Lippman handling College. Prior to establishing M:M Music, Meg cut her teeth and climbed the ladder in publicity at the Welk Music Group, home to Vanguard before being promoted to handle Vanguard’s radio promotion duties. Since 2007, M:M has specialized in radio promotion, working closely with record labels and radio stations to garner airplay for singles, help with promotional marketing, and booking station shows. We caught up with animal lover and football fan Ms. Meg recently, and asked the burning questions.
iPhone or Droid?
What’s a Droid? I’m barely on the iPhone and I went kicking and screaming into that. Given my druthers I’d still have my flip phone. I’m a girl with a Smith-Corona typewriter on display in my office and two operational rotary phones in my house.
What shows are your appointment TV watching?
The favorites we try to catch are Blacklist, Newsroom, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, John Oliver Last Week Tonight, Mom, and Mike & Molly. During Football season we’re catching whatever Patriots games we can. Everything else is a kind of watch-it-if-we-happen-to-catch-it mentality. Netflix has been the coolest invention since the remote control.
What do you see as the biggest positives and negatives facing the music industry, post- internet?
Positive: the ease of access to discovering new music and being able to listen to past favorites. The biggest negative is the infuriating perception that because it is now so easy to access, music should also be free. The recent shake up with Taylor Swift pulling her songs from Spotify at least started to make public the shamefully inadequate earnings of writers and artists from entities like them. When you can hear/stream a song over 5000 times and the writer of it literally makes less than a dollar, there’s something wrong there.
What’s your favorite part of the gig?
Two things leap to mind. The first is working with some of the best humans that I know. Rene, Crystal Ann, Ben and Vania are dedicated and passionate – we all feel lucky being able to work together. Secondly, I really love it when we’re able to come through for labels and stations. It’s important to me that they want to work with us and always see the value of having us on their respective teams. So many label reps and radio programmers are also friends, but I never forget this is a business and everyone has to answer to someone. We know they have choices so we never take for granted those who fly M:M Airlines.
Favorite “pinch me, I’m dreaming” fan girl music industry memory?
I have a lot of those. To narrow it to just one is hard so I’ll narrow it to three and hopefully they fit. If not, then I’ll replace all of them with the time I got to hang out with J.C. from N’Sync!
1). Starting M:M Music, building an office and putting together what I think is the best promotion team ever.
2). Bonnie Raitt publicly thanking me and also my staff from the stage at the Boulder Convention when she was the Keynote Q&A speaker a couple of years ago.
3). I was in Ireland and Art Garfunkel was touring with Maia Sharp (who it really pays to be married to) in support of their collaborative album on Blue Note entitled “Everything Waits to Be Noticed.” Mid-way through the show, Art dedicated “Cecelia” to me. He knew it was my favorite and I’d told him all about my Gran, Cecelia. I was holding up my flip phone at the time so my mom heard it. She still tells that story at her Bridge Club.
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