Iridesense and Rick Eberle Public Relations' Rick Eberle on life as a L.I.-based publicist and a musician
I first encountered Rick Eberle as one of the two singers behind the pop-rock band Iridesense. Over the years, the Long Island-based quartet has been played on Z100 and WLIR, had music and featured on a handful of prominent TV shows. On the live end, they have also opened for a variety of known bands, including Sugar Ray, Tonic, Fountains Of Wayne, Joan Jett, and Lucinda Williams. The next announced live appearance of Iridesense -- which also includes bassist/vocalist Tara Eberle-Drouin, lead guitarist Rob Viccari, and drummer Rich Drouin -- will be at Manhattan's Rockwood Music Hall on July 6, while its next Long Island show will be at Katie's of Smithtown on August 13th.
I later encountered Rick while he worked at The Downtown and then The Crazy Donkey, where his PR career started. As the face of Rick Eberle Public Relations, Rick is one of the go-to people when it comes to local talent and festivals. Among the upcoming events he's helping to promote are May's Montauk Music Festival, July's Long Island International Film Expo, and August's Nile Rodgers-helmed Fold Festival.
Rick answered some Q&A for No Place Like Long Island, taking us behind the scenes about what it's like to do PR from Suffolk County. He can be followed on Twitter via the handles @RickEberle and @RickEberlePR.
Did you ever live anywhere besides Long Island?
RE: No, my parents moved upstate to Hobart, New York when I was 18, but my sister Tara and I decided to stay here and be rock stars. I've lived in seven or eight different towns, though!
Where is your company based these days?
RE: The Ronx. I mean, RonkonCOMA.
What's the biggest challenge of running an L.I.-based PR company? Is it having to travel to Manhattan so much?
RE: Traveling to the North Shore and Nassau and even to Long Beach takes a while, but you get used to the haul. It's similar to living outside of L.A. where you have to drive even more and the traffic is even worse! I can't complain, though, because I love what I do.
The biggest challenge is changing the perception that Long Island is somehow second-rate, when in fact it's one of the most prosperous and beautiful places on the planet.
How many of your clients are based on Long Island?
RE: A large percentage of my clients are venues, festivals and artists who are Long Island-based.
Who was the first client you ever had as a publicist?
RE: The Crazy Donkey nightclub in Farmingdale was my first PR job.
When was it that you knew you could make a living as a publicist?
RE: I literally built this company from the ground up by building relationships in every facet of the entertainment and media business. When my phone started ringing off the hook -- which I am blessed that it still does -- with new clients who were referred by a friend or associate or happy past client, I knew it was time to stop taking orders and start giving them.
Are there any other publicists on your Long Island that you're friends with?
RE: Sure, I am friends with many other PR people on Long Island. I don't know any others out here that do what I do, though. (laughs)
As a publicist, it's essential that I ask: Tell me what some of your clients are up to.
RE: I set up a deal for IndiMusic TV to be a broadcast sponsor for this year's Vans Warped Tour, so thats pretty sweet. My artists Brooke Moriber and Oogee Wawa are really starting to make some waves nationally! Check all my amazing clients at www.rickeberle.com.
What's coming up for your band Iridesense?
RE: We have four shows lined up for the summer in New York City, Long Island and Upstate New York. Check out www.iridesense.com.
Finally, what do you wish more people knew about Long Island?
RE: How awesome the people are, how beautiful the beaches are, and how many talented artists in all mediums of entertainment have come from here!