Want my job? with music, festival and showbiz PR Sacha Taylor-Cox

"Also remember to always treat people with respect, kindness and equality – you never know who you will be passing throughout your life on the way up or down!"

Want my job? with music, festival and showbiz PR Sacha Taylor-Cox

Could you first introduce yourself to the reader

Hello, My Name is Sacha Taylor-Cox, I run a music/ festival & showbiz PR company called Hush PR. We look after the publicity for mainly heritage/ household name artists on tour or releasing records, but we always have a few newcomers we love too. I’m also a former Head of Press at Decca Records, XFM Radio and the TV show Hollyoaks. Some of my current clients are former Sex Pistol Glen Matlock, Hall of Fame inductees The Zombies, Brian McFadden & Keith Duffy of Boyzlife, Tori Amos, Kim Wilde & Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth of Talking Heads.    

What does your job involve? What happens on a typical day?

Every day is different, but the majority of my time is spent reaching out to the media to discuss releases, events or tours that we have coming up and arranging interviews with the artists and media to promote those happenings. Ultimately my role is to generate publicity across all media platforms (TV, radio and Print) for our clients (the artists/ tours/ festivals), so this involves arranging sofa chats on TV shows, interviews in magazines, video premieres on blogs, sessions on the radio etc.

What’s great about what you do?

There are no formal procedures and processes. It's very fast paced and you don’t have to wait around for decisions. You have to be quick thinking and make things happen – that suits my nature. You also get to work with different people all the time, move in interesting circles full of creative and inspiring people and go to lots of gigs and parties for free!

What are the toughest parts of your job?

Everyone blames the PR! No matter how good the campaign you’ve delivered, there’s always more to do and your success is in the hands of the third parties you liaise with. It’s also life consuming and hard to get a good life/work balance as you’re pretty much on call 24/7.

What are the highlights of your career to date? 

No matter how frequently achieved, whenever you get to work with an artist whose music you love, land a big TV show or get a cover of a magazine for your artist or a story you’ve generated goes everywhere in the news, it’s always exciting. Personally, working as Head of Press at Hollyoaks and as Head of Press at Decca Records were two proud career moments for me.  

What's been the biggest challenge so far in your career? How did you overcome it? 

The main challenges running your own business are always financial  - ensuring you have enough money coming in, and being able to juggle all of the work. Music PR isn’t the best paid role in the world by any means and since the demise of actual music sales, promotional fees have become really low. Especially when you offset that against the amount of time you’re putting in and the value of the results you’re delivering. I can’t say I’ve worked out any magic formula of overcoming this – I’m never going to be rich, but I get by and I like the freedom I have and the kudos is pretty cool too!

What was your career path into this job? Have you also worked outside the arts? 

I always wanted to work in PR. Whilst at school I worked at my local radio station as an intern in the promotions team, then went on to a trainee role as a features writer at my local Whats On Magazine. I studied Media and communications at university and from there started getting involved in club events, working as a door host and organising fashion shows. I moved to London in my mid 20’s and that combined experience helped me to get a job at Ministry of Sound as their event coordinator. Whilst I was there, the PR agency for the Ministry brand (and lots of other bands/ DJs and clubs) were looking for a PR, I applied and got the job and never looked back. Within 3 years in that company I had tripled my salary, risen from publicist to Head of Press and joined the board of Directors as we grew the business from 4 staff to 40 in the 5 years that I was there.

I have worked outside of the arts on numerous occasions, since the pandemic as I work from home, I work in a local boutique at the weekends now just to be connected with people. I've always liked to have two elements in my work life. I've been a lecturer in music marketing and I ran a yoga holiday and wellness workshop company as a side-line alongside my PR career for over 10 years.

Have you noticed any changes in the industry in recent times? If so, what?

There have been so many changes throughout my time in the industry (over 25 years now). Major ones like digital/streaming etc. which caused a huge impact on everything. For me, the biggest thing (and personally I feel the saddest) is that everything is so stats driven. Gut feeling, experience, knowledge and intuition no longer seem to be needed or respected within the industry – and talent has to be as savvy at building their TikTok following as at making quality music to become recognised. An artist’s career is now all about producing the right content for digital consumption. A PR’s job is also very different from the traditional role we used to hold in an artists team. PR’s used to shape trends, break an artists career and influence public consumption, but this is really now in the hands of social media influencers and our role has taken a back seat from being the conduit between the talent and the public to being a cog in the promotional wheel. Fortunately we are still essential in the business of amplification, but not the only route used to create awareness.

How has your background, upbringing and education had an impact on your artistic career?

I come from a poor background, so always had to work for what I wanted and create my own opportunities. I had the fortune of a supportive upbringing with a single parent who put herself through education later in life. This lead to me gaining a place at a Grammar school and then university to study my career choices. More importantly, I had to work to support myself, so I got to do a lot of work experience whilst studying which opened the doors to my career and gave me a good worth ethic, which has 100% contributed to my success.

You’ve been granted the ability to send a message to 16-year-old you. What do you say?

Believe in yourself, you’re amazing. Don’t let your self-worth stop you from feeling you deserve to be successful AND loved!

Do you have any advice for young people interested in your field?

Yes, work. No one owes you anything, they don’t owe you feedback, a living, opportunities… support people who are giving you a chance to obtain experience, make yourself indispensable, learn from their experience and knowledge and be enthusiastic and conscientious! But most of all enjoy what you do. I have only ever loved doing what I'm doing, otherwise there is little point in doing it. Also remember to always treat people with respect, kindness and equality – you never know who you will be passing throughout your life on the way up or down!

Where can people find you online?

https://uk.linkedin.com/in/sacha-taylor-cox-905205

Author

Saskia Calliste

Saskia Calliste Voice Team

Saskia is the Deputy Editor of Voice and has worked on campaigns such as International Women’s Day, Black History Month, and Anti-Bullying Week. Outside of Voice, Saskia is a published author (Hairvolution) and has guest featured in various other publications (The Women Writers’ Handbook/ Cosmopolitan/ The Highlight). She has a BA in Creative Writing and Journalism and an MA in Publishing. She is a mentor for Women of the World Global, has guest lectured at the University of Roehampton and has led seminars/panel talks on Race, Equality and Diversity. She was a 2022 Guest Judge for Dave (TV Channel) in search of the 'Joke of the Fringe'. She is 27-years-old, based in London, and loves to cook and explore new places in her spare time.

sincerelysaskia.com

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