10 Questions with ... Tami Morrissey
September 22, 2015
1. What made you want to get into the music business? Were there any early mentors?
I started a band in my late teens. We wound up getting a lot of local attention and airplay. I met a few radio people from there and then married a radio guy! Yes, I am married to the infamous Max Tolkoff. He taught me everything NOT to do in radio promotion! No leaving whining messages, no"screaming" at programmers about anything (surest way to not get a call back!) But mentor? No. Mental? Yes.
2. Can you give us a rundown of the record labels and positions you've held over the years?
I've been fortunate to lead the national promotion effort at all the labels I joined. And if I listed all the labels, we would come to the end of the internet. But some of the highlights include Discovery, Epitaph, Surf Dog, Koch, Epitaph (again), Suburban Noize, Equal Vision, and now MEGAFORCE!
3. You spent almost 10 years as Sr. Dir./Radio Promotion for Epitaph Records. What were some of the major highlights of your time there?
Finally getting to work with Social Distortion and delivering the biggest radio hit of their career. And, of course, working with all my favorites like Pennywise, Rancid, Transplants, Bad Religion, HorrorPops and Nekromantix.
4. You also put the band We Came As Romans on the Active Rock map during your time as Dr./Promotions for Equal Vision Records.
It was a time when that particular sound was not getting much airplay. It was a yearlong challenge to get radio to take notice. I'm happy to see that the set-up we did then has helped their new record.
5. You've also been Dir./Promotion at most of these labels. How important is a great video nowadays to the success of a radio single?
Two separate animals. Bears playing with alligators. These two things do not really have anything to do with one another. I suppose they amuse each other. And if a video is going to get a HUGE online audience, I am sure the radio station would like the exclusive for their website. But in the wild, they just don't interact.
6. Congratulations on your new position at Megaforce. What are your big priority projects right now?
Thank you, I am so happy to be at Megaforce. My projects right now on the rock side, I have 10 Years and Motorhead (I get to work with LEMMY!)
7. What else does the label have coming down the pipeline in the future?
Coming in the New Year, we have new singles from The Cult, Anthrax and a few other surprises.
8. As a promotion person, what are the most important tools/resources you use to stay on top of the Rock formats' growth and constant daily changes?
My ears are the most important tools. Talking/listening to everyone. Programmers, other promotion folks, and All Access. I read everything I can find and I ask a lot of questions. It keeps me up to date with what station is doing what and who is consulting who and, and and...
9. Let's talk about the Rock format as a whole. What's your take on the state of Rock Rradio today?
I think Rock radio is really taking a lot of chances. I feel like Rock is breaking out of the box it has been in for a long time. There are quite a few adventurous programmers out there who are taking real chances and getting great results.
10. Finally, besides your career in radio promotion, I understand you're an experienced jewelry maker and designer with many of your pieces still adorning Rock bands big and small. Can you share some highlights with us?
I won't share names. I make jewelry specifically for a client and that is very personal. I don't make jewelry for the masses. If I have someone who inspires me, I will design a piece for them. Or if someone comes to me with an idea, we will create their vision together. I don't have a website where you can buy my jewelry. The only place you can find my stuff is on the "Jewelry By Tami Morrissey" Facebook page or CustomMade.com