By Abigail Wendle
Music can be artistic, intellectual or political. We can listen and relate to it alone or allow it to draw us out of ourselves and bring us into devoted communities. Whatever our individual relationship with music is, there is no doubt that it is powerful and human.
For Robin Muller, an intern for Warner Electra Atlantic, music has taught her how to express herself and communicate with others.
“As with any art form, the artist is passionate,” Muller said. “They have thousands of fans following them around to listen and dance to their music. If you open yourself up, music can touch your soul.”
That is why she was thrilled last year when she received a phone call from WEA’s college representative director in New York City congratulating her on receiving an internship. Muller has spent her final year at Flagler as one of only 40 college representatives for WEA in the country.
Representing the St. Augustine and Jacksonville market, Muller does a fair amount of driving.
“My main job is to visit larger retail stores like Best Buy, as well as locally owned stores like Turtles or the CD Connection to monitor WEA inventories,” she said.
Every other Friday afternoon, Muller heads home to finish her wrap-up report and send it off to the WEA headquarters in New York City. She also has conference calls with the other WEA college representatives and their director.
“I don’t like driving on the road alone so much,” Muller said. “But it’s a great place to listen to music.”
When asked what was in her stereo now, she blushed and replied, “Beck’s new album.” Why the crimson complexion? “Beck isn’t a WEA artist,” Muller confessed.
It’s all about the music for Muller.
“My job is about promoting what I love,” she said. And music promotion can be very fun and creative. “I get free tickets to shows to pass out records and posters for WEA artists.”
Muller also spends time looking at artist Web sites and albums. “I design and build store displays to promote the album based on the artists’ image and message.”
WEA represents musicians like Madonna, James Blunt, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Led Zeppelin, The Doors and Phish.
“I’ve always been into Phish and I just threw an album release party for the Red Hot Chili Pepper’s latest album, Stadium Arcadium,” she said.
Muller partnered with the manager of Fuel Coffee House in Jacksonville to throw the bash.
“We played the album all night and had drink specials on ‘red’ drinks,” she said. “About 60 people showed up and it was a fun event to plan.”
Although WEA represents several mainstream artists, Muller likes moving outside of the popular music found under WEA.
“Music is about freedom of expression,” she said. “Though I am just an avid listener, music is a way to speak my mind, to say what I believe in. There should be no restrictions on what artists can say.”
Living by this philosophy, Muller does not restrict herself to what kind of music she listens to.
“I started listening to jam bands but I also like hip-hop and I’m into indie rock like The Thermals and Comets on Fire,” she said.
With graduation approaching in December, Muller has already begun the job hunt. She wants to move out to the west coast, preferably San Francisco or Portland.
“I want to get away from the east coast scene and discover the unfamiliar,” she said.