Spune's Annette Marin: "Music Promotion is a Lot Like Running a Grassroots Political Campaign"

For three years now, Annette Marin's been a mover and shaker at Spune Productions, alongside Lance Yocom, and had a hand in this year's Index Fest and Untapped Festival. In 2013, she's helping ready new releases from Air Review and Datahowler.

As a student, Marin set out to pursue a career in politics, but found even the most tragically hip music argument over drinks to be a thousand times more pleasant than your typical dust-up over political matters. And so it began for her.

I understand you had a dance-off with a horse at Dada once? How about some other crazy dirt from the clubs? I honestly don't have any dirt, really! But yes, I had a dance-off with a horse at Dada once. That was pretty crazy.

Who do you love? I know you're big into Yells at Eels. Who else? Seeing people freak out over Yells at Eels at Index Festival was pretty amazing. What an amazing group of musicians. I saw them for the first time at an art gallery on Halloween last year. Mind blown. Really like Blackstone Rangers, Air Review, The O's, Bravo Max!, Foxtrot Uniform, Zhora, Michael Donner. Too many to name. And of course the entire Spune roster!

In school, your focus was politics? Nothing in a music direction? Besides going to a million concerts, not really.  In school I was very much into politics, and worked on a few campaigns in my 20s. It was my way to find like-minded individuals and talk about things that mattered to me. But after a decade of beating my head against the wall, I found myself angry and disheartened. The passion I once felt only caused me anxiety every time I turned on the news, so I shifted my attention towards my other passion: music. I was able to go to shows and meet people without having polarizing conversations.

I'd rather see a Deep Ellum hipster snob and a 'roided Ft. Worth metalhead trade opinions than Red vs. Blue-staters any day. People can disagree about music, sure, but it's easier to have those conversations over a drink, without getting into a fight. I mention all this because music promotion is a lot like running a grassroots political campaign, in a way. 

But it was live music that really put the hook in you as a kid? My mom was a huge music fan, so naturally I grew up listening to her record collection and reading her Rolling Stone magazines. I went to my first concert when I was probably 12 and ever since then I was hooked on live music. "Experiencing" music was an addiction. I'd go to three or four shows on one tour if I could.

And it was catching live music out in the 'burbs that got you involved? In 2009, I found myself living in Frisco, working a 9 to 5 job in the insurance industry, over-worked and extremely bored. I'd check out shows on the weekends but never really plugged in anywhere until I found Lochrann's. They were hosting live music every Thursday night. Being able to check out local bands minutes from my house was mind- blowing to me. Through the shows at Lochrann's, I met Matthew Harber of Wellhouse Co, the company behind the music program that was partnering with Spune Productions at the time. 

The more I learned about Wellhouse Co, the more I wanted to get involved. The idea of forming a music community in Frisco, one person at a time, was very appealing to me and brought out my "inner campaigner." I started taking photos and making my rounds at the shows. The progression with Spune happened over time. As Wellhouse Co and Spune collaborated more and more, my role grew until I was pretty much working full time for Wellhouse/Spune. I quit my job and since then it's been nonstop, day and night, 27/7 Spune.

I picture Spune behind the scenes as a creative think tank. True? When I started with Spune a couple of years ago, there were only four of us. I was the only female. Since then, we have doubled in size and I am super glad to say we now have more more ladies on board. We are all strong-willed, opinionated, funny workaholics, and it's not usual for us to send/receive emails late into the night. Lots of caffeine is involved. Spune is spread out across the metroplex, which means a ton of emails and iChats. I can't wait until we have an office to work out of someday. Lots of great ideas over here at Spune; it would be great to harness them in a more interactive manner.

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Alan Ayo