It is incredibly easy to get buried in publicity emails, and lose track of what you should actually be covering versus what publicists want you to cover. Our publicist (Mike Farley, take a bow) sends me, on average, dozens of emails a day, all of which scream, “Listen to this right this second!” Before I know it, a band I like, like Travis, has a new album out, and I wonder why I haven’t heard a thing about it. Seriously, isn’t it strange that Travis put out an album and the label did nothing to promote it?
Anyway, at the end of the day today, Mike forwards an email from the Director of Publicity at Victory Records. The title of the email instantly gets my attention:
“I’m removing you from the promo mailing list.”
Even better, the email is a mass email, delivered to God knows how many other sites that Victory had once called upon. The body of the email is almost as funny as the title:
I have been sending you promotional material for almost a year now and have not seen sufficient action on your site for one reason or another.
If you have an issue with this, please respond within the next WEEK and let me know how this can improve, otherwise, please get in touch when you’re able to give us exposure.
Again, wow, classy.
Okay, here’s the point of my piece. I have been so consumed with putting out the fires in my inbox that it wasn’t until I forwarded this hilarious email to some of the writers on my staff that I even realized (my writers, unlike me, are still in contact with the outside world) that Victory records is in the middle of a veritable shitstorm of negative publicity. All of their biggest bands, including Hawthorne Heights, Taking Back Sunday and Atreyu, have jumped ship following charges of gross malfeasance. The final nail in the coffin came today, when former Victory Records VP Ramsey Dean wrote a lengthy dissertation for Absolute Punk about his time with the label. It has since been taken down but, thanks to Idolator and Google cache, the rant lives on. If you have ever supported this label, you owe it to yourself to read this and learn what is really going on. Racism, hookers and paranoia, oh my!
To read the entire rant (warning: it’s really, really long), click here. As a post script, I was tempted to tell the publicist that we would be delighted to be taken off their promo list, but I care so little about their product that I decided not to bother.