Before I join should i/did you?

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crabtwins
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Before I join should i/did you?

Post by crabtwins » Fri Aug 31, 2007 7:33 am

Just curious if I should have a catalog of 20 songs to upload before i join to get the most of my membership or just join and start slowly uploading? I know everyone does things different and there is no formula, Im just curious what you did? Do you wish you would have waited until you had 20 songs mixed and mastered before joining?thanks

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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by clonsberry » Fri Aug 31, 2007 7:48 am

For what it's worth, I probably had 20+ songs mixed and mastered. And probably another 30 or so instrumentals actually released on CDs. But I can't say it would have made a difference one way or the other for me. There were flaws in my songs that I have to change.. and remix and remaster. My instrumental cuts needed some tweaking as well.I tend to write fresh stuff for the Taxi listings anyway over using my old material. Not really sure why. It's just worked out that way. Maybe because I write more specifically to what the listing is asking for (as I understand it) as opposed to writing what I wanted before.But I think the question itself is too individual for someone else to answer in terms of what you should do.

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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by hummingbird » Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:07 am

Quote:Just curious if I should have a catalog of 20 songs to upload before i join to get the most of my membership or just join and start slowly uploading? I know everyone does things different and there is no formula, Im just curious what you did? Do you wish you would have waited until you had 20 songs mixed and mastered before joining?thanks Okay, this is a good question. Because I decided that, before joining Taxi, I should have at least 6 or 7 songs that were demo'd. I and my co-writer spent about $3,000 doing 'full band' demos of 6 songs. After I joined Taxi and submitted them (for song pitches)... I found out that the songs were flawed and not commercially viable & needed rewriting. Even rewriting and reproduction (costing more money) couldn't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. That was a very hard lesson all around - I was choked by the critiques, and it was a very expensive way to learn my stuff wasn't ready for the market. But I eventually sucked it up and decided to use Taxi critiques as part of my educational process. Meeting John Braheny (who has worked as a Taxi screener) helped a lot in terms of my trusting what Taxi was telling me. I'm learning to produce now, so, I write stuff for Taxi listings (and thereby build my catalogue).So, if you are asking me, should you demo 20 songs before joining Taxi... I'd say no. I'd say get some feedback on the songs before spending tons money on demos.What you could do is post a link to one or two of what you think is your best, most commercially viable songs (and tell us, is it an artist pitch, a song pitch, or a pitch to film & tv; what genre is it, who are your "a la's") and ask if the forum folks think you have commercially viable work. There are some great mentors here.Hummin'bird
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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by crabtwins » Fri Aug 31, 2007 1:14 pm

hmm...

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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by kg » Sat Sep 01, 2007 3:43 am

I joined with only 4 songs a few years ago and took the feedback I got from those four songs recorded 2 more and found that I had made great strides in my songwriting from taking the feedback on my first 4 very seriously. Then I took a break from Taxi for about a year while honing in on the songwriting and working on my album. I then rejoined to start pitching those 10 songs as an artist or a songwriter...what ever it truly fits. So no, I don't submit a lot, but when I do, it's definitely appropriate. Shortly, I will be able to do most of my recording at the "high bar" level on my own, which will bring in all the other types of listings into play. So I guess it depends on what you are expecting from Taxi at this point. If you want to get better and can truly learn from the feedback you get here, then invest the money and learn from it... If you want to be able to submit a lot of songs throughout the year, then wait until you have a bigger catalogue. I still think that my joinng early on is what really helped me get better, but Iwas a willing student. Rambling now as usual...hope it helps you sort through your thoughts. (BTW - I just landed an excellent licensing deal outside of Taxi, however, I really believe that I wouldn't have gotten that far without the feedback and FREE advice that I've recieved in particular from Taxi, so it definitely has worked in-directly for me)

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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by tedsingingfox » Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:18 am

For what it's worth, I only have 8 songs recorded (and two alternate versions of two of them). So far, I've had six forwards in the first 10 months of my first year of membership. And I agree with every posting i've read so far. While I DO wish more of the listings offered feedback, the critiques I've gotten have all been smart, insightful, and surprisingly supportive, even on the songs that were just plain wrong for the listing. It seems to me that when the music is ready, it'll find the right ears (when submitted for the correct type of listing).My biggest comment/response would be to tell you to join. Period. This has been one of the best, most eye-opening investments in my future I've ever made. Don't wait. Let TAXI help you get better at what you do, and help you get closer to your dreams. This is the real deal.Good luck. And get started... Tedtedsingingfox
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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by hummingbird » Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:23 am

Quote:My biggest comment/response would be to tell you to join. Period. This has been one of the best, most eye-opening investments in my future I've ever made. Don't wait. Let TAXI help you get better at what you do, and help you get closer to your dreams. This is the real deal.Exactly.
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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by aubreyz » Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:34 am

Quote:Quote:My biggest comment/response would be to tell you to join. Period. This has been one of the best, most eye-opening investments in my future I've ever made. Don't wait. Let TAXI help you get better at what you do, and help you get closer to your dreams. This is the real deal.Exactly.Mega ditto.

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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by asiabackpacker » Thu Sep 13, 2007 1:23 pm

At what point do you guys go all out on the production of a demo? It sounds like most of the time what gets submitted comes back with feedback, critique things to change. So I would assume you don't want to spend 1K doing a kick ass demo, only to have it torn to shreds by the reviewers, and then have not only to rewrite but to scrap all that money you just put into recording it.I'm in probably a similar situation to the original poster.I haven't joined yet... I have maybe 10 to 20 songs that I think are pretty strong. But I haven't demoed any of them professionally yet because I know that most of them could still benefit from more rewriting.I'm very confused over this, and not really even sure how to ask what I am trying to get at....If I think my songs still need some rewriting (I'm planning to join initially for the experience, and to grow from the critiques), then how much effort and $ should I put into demoing them? What level of quality of demo do I have to submit to be seriously considered for the listings? Are they looking more for the quality of the song or the quality of the recording, or both?Are you guys producing your demos at home for stuff you're submitting? Or, going into a studio and spending money to have them produced professionally? At what point do you know it's time to go and produce the full-fledged studio recording?A lot of questions, I know and this could probably be it's own thread, but it seems somewhat relevant to the original question....Thanks!Elliott

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Re: Before I join should i/did you?

Post by mazz » Thu Sep 13, 2007 7:14 pm

Elliott, I'm not a songwriter but my wife is and she was frustrated by some of the same things you mentioned. She would put a lot of time and effort in to recording a song only to get feedback to change a line or get to the chorus quicker, blah, blah, blah,! It's discouraging to spend a lot of time/money on demoing something only to miss the mark for the listing and being told you have to go back to the drawing board.From what I've seen and heard here on the forum and at the road rally, in my own words: If you're trying to write songs for other artists to record, like is done primarily in country these days, then a really good song recorded with just a guitar or piano and vocal (GREAT performances required) will usually suffice. I've heard Nashville producers speak at conferences and from what they've said, country is still one of the genres that will accept these kinds of demos.On the other hand, if you are trying to be a recording artist and/or get your songs played on Film/TV, then you need masters (broadcast quality recordings of your songs). As you know, this can cost a lot of money and time even if you have your own setup.One thing that has been recommended here quite often is to have your song professionally critiqued by someone like Jason Blume or John Brahaeny before you go in to the studio and sink a bunch of money on a demo/master. If you are clear on what you are going to do with the song (artist pitch, film/tv, etc.) then I would imagine the critique would be even more focussed and useful. 20 or 30 bucks on a custom critique, even the same song two or three times, could save you hours of re-work (studio time=money) on the other end of the process.As an instrumental composer that has been into MIDI and recording for many years, it's relatively easier for me to crank out good sounding stuff pretty quickly in my home studio but I really feel for songwriters, many of whom have spent a whole bunch of time on songwriting and are not as of yet up to speed on the tech side of things. Its something I've seen a lot and I don't have the answers but I hope that my overly long post has shed some light on some ideas for you.Good luck and hang in there!Mazz
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