by J.D. Reager
Tomorrow night (Friday, April 20) at 7 p.m., two fixtures of the local music scene - blogger/publicist Rachel Hurley and audio engineer/booking agent Curry Weber - will celebrate the launch of their new artist promotion and booking agency, Kangaroo, with a launch party at Otherlands.
Kangaroo comes out of the gate with a robust list of well-known local musicians already on the company's roster, including Star & Micey, Lord T & Eloise and The Memphis Dawls. Friday's launch party offers an equally stellar line-up, with Jeffrey James Hulett, Joseph Lemay and DJ Buck Wilders joining the Dawls as the evening's entertainment.
Hurley spoke to the Flyer this week about her new company and more.
Memphis Flyer: First off, where did you get the name?
Rachel Hurley: The name Kangaroo is a reference to my favorite Big Star song. Obviously, I have spent a lot of time working on promoting the band's legacy the last few years through my work with Ardent and bonding with people from all over the country over their undying love for that band, so it seems fitting. Also, kangaroos cannot walk backwards. The shape of their body and the length of their strong tail prohibits them from being able to step backwards. So, that's kind of cool!
What inspired you to start this kind of business now?
I've been asked by several bands over the years to "manage" them, but I really don't particularly like band managers and I never really wanted to take on that role. Lord T & Eloise came to me a couple of months ago and asked if I would help them streamline their web strategy. They have so much going on, including a new mixtape called Blackout Crunk coming out at the beginning of summer, that they wanted to make sure they had a real marketing plan in place for the rest of 2012. I've known them since they played their first show at The Hi-Tone, so I was happy to jump in and help. Then I ran into The Memphis Dawls at a show and they asked me about the same thing, plus they wanted help booking shows. Since opening for Jack White at The New Daisy last month, they've been pumped to get out and play more out of town dates. Curry Weber has been booking Star & Micey for several years now and I have worked with them since they released their debut on Ardent Music. So, I asked him for his expertise to get that going. We then realized that we had five clients and so we just decided to give it a name.
What does this mean for your other projects?
I am conceding the editor role I had at The Vinyl District to another great Memphis writer, Charles Gray. I'll still be helping out the next month or so, just to make sure there is a smooth transition - but my focus will be on The Ardent Music Blog- a blog written by musicians and featuring all of Ardent's podcasts, like The Warm Up.
Kangaroo Launch Party
w/ The Memphis Dawls, Jeffrey James Hulett, Joseph Lemay and DJ Buck Wilders
Friday, April 20
doors @ 7 p.m.