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Meet MacKenzie Reynolds of Capitol Music Group in Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to MacKenzie Reynolds.

MacKenzie, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
It’s been quite a ride! I grew up in a rural farming town in Michigan and attended Western Michigan University to study Public Relations. During my junior year at WMU, I knew I needed to start thinking about landing an internship that would lead to a job offer after graduation. I always wanted to work in entertainment, drawn in by the big city glitz and glamour! Thankfully, I had a few personal connections in the music business in New York that I was able to tap into to help me land an interview at a major record label—EMI Music North America. After the interview, I was offered a position as a summer intern in the Publicity department in 2010. It was unpaid and NYC isn’t cheap, but I made it work with the help of my two cousins who graciously let me crash with them.

Fortunately, I made a good impression during the internship because just a month shy of my college graduation date, EMI offered me a full-time publicity assistant position. So, in 2011, I moved to NYC and started my career in music publicity. After two years, EMI was acquired by Universal Music Group and the company relocated to Los Angeles to become Capitol Music Group. I was offered a position as a marketing & publicity coordinator at the newly formed CMG, so I packed up and headed out west! Fast forward to 2020, and I’m now Director of Publicity at CMG working with the globe’s biggest superstars like Katy Perry, Halsey, Sam Smith and Jennifer Lopez. Its been a lot of long hours, nights and weekends over the past ten years, but it’s all been worth it! I get to share incredible music from my favorite artists with fans all around the world.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There have certainly been many challenges, personally and professionally, along the way! When I was nine years old, my father passed away. It always felt like a story that was cut short. I never got to see what became of our relationship as I got older, though I know he would be proud of me. Thankfully, my family is incredibly supportive and helped guide and push me forward. Growing up in a rural farming community, there wasn’t much opportunity to find a job in entertainment, but I knew what I wanted to do and that meant I had to be bold with my life choices. It was tough being an unpaid intern in NYC too. I worked full time at EMI Music, and when the office workday ended, I walked over to DSW Shoes where I was salesperson to work until midnight. You just have to do whatever you can to get by and make your dreams happen. I ate a lot of rice and beans that summer, it was cheap and easy!

I knew it was all lining up for my future, so I kept my head down and worked hard. When I moved to LA and CMG was formed, it was an entirely new company! Not only was I learning a new city, but I had a new manager and a new team and new responsibilities. I wanted to prove I was worth it to them, that I brought value to the company, so I continued to put in the time. Over the years, there have been a lot of challenges, mostly balancing work and personal life, but that’s what I signed up for. Entertainment is 24/7 and so is being a music publicist. I try to find the silver linings and remember to appreciate where I am today. Being on the GRAMMY red carpet with superstars is pretty darn exciting!

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I am Director of Publicity at record label Capitol Music Group. Essentially, I help artists share their music with the world through media exposure. I work with TV shows to book performances and pitch magazines and blogs to write about artists and new music. I build relationships with journalists and TV producers and walk artists down the red carpet at various events and award shows. I monitor their interviews and help them stay on track when talking to press. CMG has so many incredible artists like Katy Perry, Halsey, Sam Smith, Migos, Lil Baby, Disclosure…the list goes on! I am part of a larger Publicity team at CMG, where each publicist has their own roster of artists to look after. My current roster includes Disclosure, Katy Perry, The Chemical Brothers, Alison Wonderland, Jonas Blue, NJOMZA and more! I try to make sure each artist gets my devoted attention because each artist is unique. Their stories are special and personal, and they deserve to have their art shared with the utmost detail and care.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
So many! I have been so fortunate to have many champions in my life. My family has been amazing. My mom gave me the confidence to be whatever I wanted to be; the sky was the limit. “Walk in like you own the place!”, she would say to me. I have never forgotten that. From my cousins who let me live with them for free in NYC, my aunts helping me get a nice business wardrobe early on in my career, to my incredible sister Tiffany who has helped me in more ways than I could ever count, and my wonderful, supportive husband Matt, I have been truly blessed with a loving family.

I’ve also had incredible professional managers, teammates and mentors! I really did luck out. From my first managers and teammates at EMI who showed me the ropes, my manager during the early days of CMG, to my current boss and label leadership, the support has been unbelievable. Don’t underestimate the power of someone giving it to you straight, calling you out when you need a reality check. Reminding you why you’re here. Those are the people who really care about you and your success. If there is one thing I am sure of in a world full of uncertainty now, it’s that I am incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by a network of awesome, encouraging people.

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MacKenzie Reynolds

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