The mission of Carnival of Oddities is to introduce the world to the names, faces, and sounds of the next rock revival by strategically breaking the rules of traditional public relations practices.
Carnival of Oddities is the brainchild of founder Lindsay Teske. You probably don’t know who the hell she is, but don’t worry, she’s qualified. Lindsay holds a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising from DePaul University, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude, as well as a Master of Arts in Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship: Music from Goldsmiths, University of London, where she graduated with distinction. Over the past five years, Lindsay completed approximately a zillion odd jobs and internships, which included everything from hanging gig posters in bathroom stalls at a local venue to assisting with a PR campaign for Gene Simmons when she was far too young and had no idea what the hell what she was doing. If you want to learn more about these seasons of her life, you’re more than welcome to pop to her LinkedIn.
Carnival of Oddities is largely an answer to the years that Lindsay has spent as a music journalist, which she got into after feeling like shit from failing an introductory economics course during her sophomore year of college. Since, Lindsay made her way from an intern to a contributing writer at Consequence of Sound and has also written for Atwood Magazine, Alt Citizen, and RAMzine, where she later became Assistant Editor. She also wrote for loads of other independent sites when she was first getting started, which she’s really grateful for.
For three years, Lindsay was the Editor in Chief of AMPLIFY., the publication she launched the night she received her dreaded economics grade. The publication exclusively covered emerging rock artists, and was fortunate enough to accumulate a really talented staff of contributing writers and photographers along the way. Carnival of Oddities is, in many ways, AMPILIFY.’s fraternal twin. Both are diehard initiatives to promote the work of emerging rock artists. Though, instead of writing about them, this time Lindsay is publicizing them.
Despite spending years as a journalist who had a specific focus on emerging rock artists, Lindsay never really received press releases about them — rather, she was sent information about acts that were already pretty well-established. This is what tipped her off to the fact that these artists were being underserved. She also didn’t like how frequently she saw half assed, ineffective, and old school PR strategies being used on top of it all. So, she decided to have a hand in changing that. Lindsay transferred from Elon University to DePaul University her senior year specifically to obtain a degree in public relations so she’d have the chops to start her own company and carve out a new, more effective approach to campaign strategy and media relations. Within a month of graduating from DePaul, Lindsay began attending Goldsmiths specifically to develop Carnival of Oddities. Instead defaulting to going to work full time for another company when she completed her education, Lindsay went to work for herself. What you’re seeing now is the result of that.
Lindsay would like to thank Adrian De La Court, Sian Prime, Tom Whittaker, Nur Uysal, and Don Ingle. These are some of her former educators who, whether they know it or not, played a huge role in giving her the knowledge and confidence to start her own company.
The Carnival of Oddities Way
The philosophy of Carnival of Oddities is as follows: public relations, but make it guerilla. While there is merit in traditional public relations practices, that alone won’t be what captures someone’s attention. Members of the music media (Lindsay included) see countless press releases per day with similar formats, similar language, and similar layouts – none of which is conducive to the undeniable fact that each artist is different in sound, style, and necessities.
Campaigns at Carnival of Oddities will reflect that.
How? Well, the exciting part is that that can’t be said. Each project will be specifically designed for the artist, with their individual needs and desired outcomes at the forefront of the strategic development process. With that being said, at Carnival of Oddities, an entirely fresh approach is taken for each artist. This is because what works for one artist may not work for another, and we’re here to adjust, plan, and implement accordingly to this.
In short? We know a MailChimp blast isn’t always the answer. We’ll specifically target relevant media outlets and tailor the pitch to each one. Yeah, this method isn’t typically practiced, but it gets better results. After all, a successful public relations is a marathon rather than a sprint. Our laces are tied, and we’re ready to help you get to the finish line.
A carnival is exhilarating, wild, memorable, and a hell of a lot of fun. No matter the needs of the artist, it is a promise that these elements will remain at the cornerstone of each project that we undertake.
For now, all services at Carnival of Oddities are free of charge. This is because of our core belief that public relations services should be as accessible as possible. When this changes, we’ll tell you everything – but rest assured that it will not impact clients who came aboard during our period of free work, and our pricing system will still have affordability and accessibility at the forefront.
The 7 deadly sins of
Carnival of Oddities
Time to level with you: Carnival of Oddities goes a little more rogue than some PR companies generally tend to feel comfortable doing. That’s a risk on our end, but it’s one we’re going to keep taking. With that said, outlined below are the sins of traditional business that we commit on a daily basis. It may be different, but it’s more conducive to actualizing our mission to the fullest extent.
1. Rock music is inherently rich in historical and cultural capital, and deserves to be amplified indefinitely. We’ll forever amplify it.
2. Data-based gatekeeping is absolutely ridiculous. We’ll chuck that.
3. New, unsigned, and emerging artists deserve to be given public relations support earlier in their careers than it has been historically offered. We’ll provide that.
4. Capitalism should never outshine the will to amplify based on merit. We won’t let it.
5. Public relations should be an accessible and affordable service for all artists, catalyzed by a fluid financial model that enables this. We’ll implement that.
6. Some public relations rules and traditions are meant to be broken or ignored – and it’s almost always more fun that way. We’ll break them.
7. Public relations is not, and should never be treated as, a “one size fits all” discipline. Each campaign should be as distinctive as the client it is built around. We’ll build that for you.