Big thank you from

Jenny Munro talks to Jeff Robinson

Jeff Robinson JEFF Robinson, from Lisburn, works as Head of Marketing for new independent record label Urban Angel Music.

The 24-year-old has always longed to be involved in music as a career and was thrilled when he became head of marketing for the local record label. He has been working in the music industry for many years since completing an HNC in Engineering. He started a diploma course in performing arts at North Down Ards Institute, which introduced him to the business side of music and then he decided to set up his own business - a recording I rehearsal studio based in Belfast called Electric Studios. After two successful years at the studio Jeff branched into tour management and was offered the chance to tour manage a big band from New York called `The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players.' Then through a friend he ended up meeting the bosses at Urban Angel music who saw his passion and experience within the industry and asked him to join the label.

A typical working day starts at 10am and finishes at 5pm. I normally wake up at 8.30am and either take the train or drive to work in Belfast. I get into the office around 9.45am and the first thing I always do is check emails and make a cup of tea. Then I get straight into looking at the artist release schedule and see what's coming up and what needs to be planned. I am involved in media / radio promotion and distribution for the label. I work at least five weeks in advance of a single being released and around eight weeks before an album comes out. It is my job to generate publicity and create hype about the artist. When I've checked to see who is up next - I start immediately by having a meeting with my boss and the rest of the team. Each department has to work closely together to ensure the successful release and distribution.

Once everything is going smoothly I then have to write press releases and work with the in-house graphic designer to create press packs and promotional items, which will be mailed to everyone on my media list. I get in touch with my radio contacts to try and get as much air time for the artist and I arrange a media launch for the artist. I'll book a venue to host the launch and send out invites to journalists, heads of music and photographers to come along to the event. I deal with a lot of distributors on the phone - distribution is a crucial part of the release process. I have to contact the distributors months in advance to make sure everything is sorted in time for the release.

Also if the albums or singles we represent go into the charts I have to draw up a press release and have it ready to send out to the media. This is a great way to capitalise on the artist's success and gain more media exposure.

I am constantly in touch with the artists who are based all over the world so it is crucial that I am organised and on top of everything to allow for the unexpected. I absolutely love my job - it is more like a hobby and something I'm very passionate about. I mean if things are busy in work I'll just stay on and don't feel the need to rush home. However, I am usually home by 6.30ish. I will have dinner and spend time with my fianc�e Ursula. Some evenings I go online to check my email and carry out research on bands. Even when I'm not at work I'm still on call. I carry a notebook around as my phone could ring at any time and I have to be able to take down notes.

Working within the music industry is about believing in yourself. working hard, being prepared for knock backs and just getting back up and trying again. It's amazing working in music but you have to go to it, it won't come to you.

Ulster Star