If it hasn’t been obvious by my Twitter and Facebook feeds, I am passionate about what I am passionate about. Sports, film, TV, bad jokes, my family, my friends, my doxys, Philly and especially music. Nothing in this world can take you back to a time and place and change your mood in a flash like 3 minutes or so of great music. Because the best music doesn’t waste time or take hours or weeks to develop, it has the power of immediacy , the power to grab you at the outset, and the power to get stuck in your head, be it amazing or kind of corny (thanks, Ylvis and your damn fox sayings).
But every so often, out of that music comes something more. That is exactly what has happened recently. Elsewhere on this blog, you’ll find posts about why I am where I am professionally and health wise, along with a piecemeal history of what I was able to accomplish before my professional life ended with my lung disease.
One of the things from that past life I’ve missed has been the chance to create and promote, to spread the word and ignite the same passion I felt for a film or project. I look back with pride on the two dance marathons for Muscular Dystrophy I created at Villanova University in the 70’s, the events I organized for a national trade association that focused on home video retailers, and the various promotions I held over the years at my video stores in Ardmore, Conshohocken, and the Philly area. I am especially proud of what I accomplished in the promotional area when I was with TLA Video (one day I’ll go into more detail of why my time with TLA Video was a sometimes frustrating time of my life, yet it was my greatest accomplishment).
My favorite promotion is still when I was able to attract almost 700 people to my 4th and South Street store for an in-store appearance by the great director JOHN WATERS, closely followed by a Chestnut Hill in-store World Series party with the Phillie Phantic.
I also took great pride in meeting challenges that allowed me to interact with others in a common effort, such as the SEPTA road construction project in Chestnut Hill that severely limited access to our video store and other businesses for months. I wound up helping to lead an ad-hoc group of businesses to develop emergency business plans and promotions to minimize the impact during construction and come back strong when Germantown Avenue finally reopened.
So, when I now meet and follow someone who does promotion, I always am thrilled to spot even a little of the same passion I used to have in my work. I don’t have that outlet anymore other than the old “word-of-mouth” method, and I think I’m damn good at that.
However, I can vicariously experience the old thrills watching others still actively involved in PR who truly love the project or event they are promoting, not just working the press for coverage and then moving on to the next supposed big idea. Recently, I’ve met someone who does just that, even though she is involved with businesses that I have not had professional experience with, but for which I retain passion about.
I’m talking about Dallyn Pavey, owner of DISH PUBLIC RELATIONS
Now, before anyone thinks this is just a mash note from a fanboy of IN THE POCKET, it is much more. First, she is already very much in love with David, so I won’t even go there, but it is really about what I as a fan of something she promotes can see in how she champions it. The best PR has a touch of the personal to it, a sense that the person building the campaign would also eat there, go there, and rock out to what they are asking you to try. I’ve always tried to have that attitude in the past, simply because I think any promotional effort comes off as empty and phony if I don’t get that vibe.
This doesn’t mean that you become best friends and hang all the time, but simply that there is a person who believes behind the words that they want you to believe in.
I’ve come to know Dallyn through my aforementioned love of music and in particular, the great music that has come out of the Philly area (and for some reason, I’ll always call it Philly music, not music from Philadelphia). Dallyn has been involved with David Uosikkinen’s IN THE POCKET, an ongoing effort to salute and celebrate that Philly music that I love, built around a rotating all-star lineup of the greatest Philly area rockers and musicians ever assembled.
Dallyn’s ability to create and share the message with the best personal touch is so evident every time I check their Facebook page or Twitter feed, or when I attend one of their shows. To be clichéd, it is a family gathering every time I attend an IN THE POCKET show. And Dallyn is definitely one of the reasons for that comfortable feeling.
Speaking personally, she has been beyond helpful to me by simply being genuine. She’s out front and center, talking with people and enjoying it as much as we all enjoy the interaction. And yes, if even for giving me the chance to spread the word about ITP to one more person, she has done so much for me in my current life.
The title of this blog post is a perfect example. Because of the comfort that she brings to her work, I felt comfortable enough to post to the IN THE POCKET Facebook page where I was sitting at the Colonial Theatre show and to invite someone to say hello if they saw me there. That comfort level allowed me to relax and have fun with the moment and share something with hundreds of others who I didn’t know but who I believe see the same qualities in her.
So, I sat in my C17 seat and shortly thereafter, A19 came over and said hello. Kate Kennedy-Ryan saw my silly post and made a point of taking me up on my offer. Trust me, that made my night. We later went next door to the bar and shared a few drinks with her friends as well with some of the band members, which are all part of that “family” atmosphere on their Facebook page.
Dallyn made sure to say hello to me at the show, and to bring David over to say hello, even though she was so busy. I am pretty convinced I wasn’t the only one that she extended that graciousness to and that many people in attendance were treated just as kindly. That caring showed up the next day when she posted a shot of the audience at the ITP show and made sure to tag me and others in it. As small an action as that sounds, it meant so much to me.
So, as I continue to figure out what I will be in the future down the road, it is nice to know that I can still find genuine people who exhibit some of what I tried to use in my past professional life, and that is a true joy in both the moment and in everything that moment touches.
IN THE POCKET touches me deeply on a number of levels and Dallyn is as much a part of it as every rocker on that stage that this aging fanboy idolizes.
Thank you, Dallyn.