She Is Focused

May 22, 2009

Get To Know: Promotional & Marketing Consultant, Erin Barna

Filed under: Get To Know — Felicia @ 1:10 pm

by: Felicia J. Barclay

Who: Erin Barna, Promotional & Marketing Consultant

Time In: 6 Years

Hometown: North Virginia  Erin Barna

The quintessential aspects of learning your way around a particular industry you want to thrive in is to remain humble, patient and have an understanding that you have to start running from the ground up. Virginia native Erin Barna has been in the industry for 6 years and although she’s begun earning her stripes, she intends on taking things to the next plateau. Here she talks about getting her start working with various radio stations, a woman’s role in the music business and the thing that’s more important than having a good team backing you.

Where are you from and how did you get started in your industry?

I’m originally from Northern VA; I attended Florida State University in Tallahassee. While I was there I got my first internship with Cumulus Broadcasting, working for a cluster of 5 radio stations.

Describe specifically what your job entails and how long you’ve been in the business?

Currently my focus is building my company with my business partner. We offer artists and producers promotional and marketing consulting services, as well as image consulting and event coordinating.  We also utilize our network of A&Rs and Djs to connect artists with producers.

What made you choose that profession?

I’ve always been surrounded by music and admired the impact that music can have on culture and society as a whole. It’s a beautiful thing and I’ve been blessed to have the opportunity to be a part of something so powerful.

Tell me about the first major event you worked.

The first major event that I worked on was Homecoming Weekend for Florida A&M University. At the time I was working with the radio station 102.3 in Tallahassee, FL. The weekend included a record pool conference, Tom Joyner Live Show and Homecoming Concert. My role was to ensure that the radio station had a presence at all of the events going on that weekend. I was in charge of coordinating intern teams, helping radio station Djs at various events and making sure that celebrity guests were taken care of.

Did you feel then and today like you have to prove yourself more because you’re a woman?

I feel that women in the music business have to hold themselves to a higher standard. The music industry is run predominately by men, and has a tendency to objectify women. To be successful in this business you have to have a high level of self respect and moral value.

Did you have people trying to discourage you?

Honestly, I’ve been very blessed in that most people who I’ve met have been extremely supportive of helping me to succeed in this business.

What would you say were some of the low and high points of your career?

The music industry has its ups and downs like every other business, but because I’ve been able to gain experiences in different aspects from radio to record label promotions and A&R, I’ve been able to jump from one thing to another if I need to. I wouldn’t say I’ve had “low points” but I’ve definitely had to learn the business hands on, which at times meant I just had to sit back and watch what was going on.

Who are some people in the industry you admire solely based on their hustle and work ethic?

I really admire Russell Simmons and Jay Z. They have built empires from the ground up and continue to be successful in new and innovative ways.

Who are some artists or projects you’re currently working on?

Currently I am working with Grammy Nominated production team Royal Flush. We have a lot going on with their upcoming album with their live production band, The Jaxx. We also have an event series at Sambuca called The Mid Week Fixx.

Where there any opportunities presented to you in the past that you chose to pass on, and then thought damn I should have took that?

When I was living in Tallahassee I had the opportunity to work for Dj Lil Boy, T-Pain’s DJ, but I believe that GOD will send me opportunities when I am able to take them on and work on the project to the best of my ability. At that time I wasn’t able to do the best job possible.

What are some things that would discourage you from working with someone?

I only work with people who work hard for themselves. I think having a good team around you is important, but you have to believe in your own project more than anyone else around you. I also look to work with people who have good values. It’s important to surround yourself with good people in business and in life.

What’s the one thing people should know about working with you?

I’m very “to the point”.  I usually say how I feel about a situation, good or bad. I think you should be honest with your team and the people you work with.

What stage would you say you’ve reached in your career? How far do you hope to take it?

I honestly believe that I’ve just started out. Even though I’ve been in the industry for about 6 years, I’ve been working on gaining knowledge and building relationships and I think that I still have so much to learn about this business. I plan on taking it as far as God will bless me to. I’m just scratching the surface of where I plan to go and the sky is the limit.

Contact Info:

Erin.Barna@gmail.com
www.twitter.com/erinbarna
www.myspace.com/nolesangel
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