Wonderful Woman – Taylor O’Dore
Meet Taylor O’Dore, she is a film photographer and concert promoter & planner. She is from Seattle, WA but recently moved to Los Angeles. She is ambitious, strong, independent & BUSY! And this is her story as a creative.
Q: What’s your title, what do you do?
A: While I was in Seattle I was a production assistant at one venue, assistant talent buyer at another, as well as a promoter for a couple companies and a personal assistant for a musician. About 2 years ago I started documenting and sharing my music experiences on 35mm film. I have been trying to get more involved in music in Los Angeles but nothing compares to how fulfilling Seattle is to me.
Q: How did you get into the business?
A: When I was 16 I went to my first concert in Seattle. I started going to any show I could and started volunteering at The Vera Project and it quickly became my second home. I went from sweeping floors and taking out the trash to being the assistant talent buyer in about a year! Having that on my resume made me more hireable for other internships and I started production at Chop Suey as well as being a personal assistant to a musician. I was so busy I ended up taking my high school classes online. Then I started getting involved with promoters and eventually managed an artist. Being a manager was very fun I got to travel a few times and I really value that experience.
Q: What is the biggest challenge you have faced & overcame?
A: Being a young woman in the scene put me in a position where I had to work twice as hard to earn respect. There were many times artists would assume I was a man because of my name and my job via email and be shocked when they met me or spoke with me on the phone, often immediately giving less respect when they were welcomed by a 17-year-old blonde girl. Once, a clients manager kept calling me my artist’s “assistant” instead of manager after he found out I was a woman. I was shocked!
My age has always been my biggest setback. Being under 21, there are so many shows and other events I cannot attend. It is very common for backstage to be strictly 21+ even at an all ages show and sometimes that became a big problem. There were times I would have a show and not be allowed in, or when Chop Suey would have 21+ shows I was dying to work at. I would often have awesome relationships with older people from shows and venues and have them be put off by my age when they found out.
Photography wise, I recently had a problem with someone using my photos as album art and not asking me or giving me credit. I am still working on how to approach this without sounding petty because being a young woman, I can easily be accused of overreacting. But it is etiquette to always ask and give credit to an artist or photographer. Something I would think a verified, touring artist would understand.
Q: Whats your work moto?
A: The answer is always no if you don’t ask!
That is something I always keep in mind. I’ve applied to jobs and internships that I can wrap my head around, even ones I think I’m underqualified for and it has given me my most valuable experiences.
Q: What is the best advice to give someone trying to be apart of the music industry?
A: I would say put yourself out there and network as much as possible. Go to every show, take photos of everything, shake everyone’s hand! That was something I always keep in mind. You never know what someone can offer you, and I don’t mean that in a manipulative way. You can get very far in the industry exchanging favors and contacts through word of mouth!
Q: You also work with deaf people, can you tell me about your experience with that & how you got involved?
A: I took ASL 1, 2, and 3 in high school and told many people I wanted to be an interpreter but there was not a lot of intent or planning behind it because I was so busy with music. I met some people in Los Angeles who invited me to stay a summer and I never left because I found an awesome college for interpreting near my house. Now I am working on becoming certified in interpreting music into ASL to perform at concerts and hopefully become a touring interpreter. I am also a full-time caregiver for people who are disabled, deaf, hard of Hearing and use American Sign Language. My job is very unique and it’s exciting to already have such a good job in the field I am studying, as I am only in my first semester of college. I cannot wait to see where signing takes me!
Q: What would you want to tell your 15-year-old self?
A: I have been thinking about how when I was first getting into music, I thought it was all or nothing. I thought that music had to be my ONLY priority and I had a hard time finding the energy for anything else. I am glad that I spread my wings out a little because now I can still be involved with music but in a more unique way. And I get to go to school in Los Angeles!
Q: What does GIRL POWER mean to you?
A: Girl power to me means, do not be afraid to stand up for yourself and be strong. Don’t be afraid to be loud, even be rude if you have to gain respect because sometimes you’re going to have to put in extra effort to get the same results. You have to turn that into a positive thing. You can’t be afraid of being unfeminine.
And that’s this week’s, Wonderful Woman!
Thank you, Taylor, for being YOU & inspiring others with your talents.