People - Music Business

Music Business Faculty: Michelle McDevitt


B.A., University of California, Santa Cruz

M.A., New York University

Experience and Background

Michelle McDevitt is the co-founder and president of New York-based entertainment marketing and PR firm Audible Treats. She also teaches “Publicity and Promotions in the Music Industry” to the Music Business program’s graduate students. Her research interests include the changing landscape of media, social media best practices, branding, entrepreneurialism, and emerging markets in the music industry.

Audible Treats is a premier boutique firm that specializes in promoting music and lifestyle brands. Founded in 2004 by Michelle and fellow NYU Music Business student Gavin Rhodes during their final year of the graduate program, the company is known in the landscape as a thought leader and has spearheaded creative and strategic campaigns for artists, companies, and brands such as Kreayshawn, Ed Lover, T-Pain, ESPN, Sony BMG, Universal Records, Delicious Vinyl Records, Ubisoft, and more.

Michelle is a frequent panelist at music and digital media conferences and has been interviewed by MTV, Hypebot, and more about the positive and negative impact of social media on artists’ public presence.

Why I Decided To Work in the Music Industry:

Music has been an omnipresent force in my life since early on. My mother started taking me to piano lessons as the age of 5 and I remember my teacher placing stacks of phone books underneath my feet while I sat for my hourly lessons on the piano bench. I also played trumpet in school band and jazz band and minored in music theory at UCSC, all the while knowing that I wasn’t destined (read: talented enough) to be a professional performer, so working behind the scenes was always appealing to me.

What I Like Most About Teaching:

I love to be able to share the triumphs and tragedies that I have experienced as a business owner in a constantly changing environment to future generations of music business thought leaders. My goal is to not only teach about the history and current states of the industry but to equip them with the skills to be able to thrive with the challenges that lay ahead.

Class Tips For Students:

Learn about best practices and marketing techniques from parallel industries. The music industry is now less rigid and more open to experimenting with new techniques, so the opportunities to create something that has never been done before are more realistic than ever before.

Career Tips For Students:

Networking is key. Be open and up front about what you’re interested in doing and share your thoughts with like-minded people.  Surround yourself with people you can trust to bounce your ideas off of and do not be afraid if ask questions and err on the side of professionalism. Whereas today communication can be so casual, you can stand out from the rest of the pack when you send someone a written note or a follow-up email.  

Outside Interests:

Taking photographs and finding beauty in everything from exotic travels to seemingly mundane everyday things. Taking Irish dance lessons – my peak was winning a San Francisco Bay Area regional championship at the age of 17 but I have since relegated myself to the “over the hill” team and do it for more social and fitness reasons than to compete. Crafting, making jewelry, cooking, vintage shopping, I’m obsessed with doing anything DIY.  

Favorite Music:

I am one of those annoying people who say they like everything.