My first rejection -- I'm so excited

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radianation
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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by radianation » Mon Oct 09, 2006 9:01 am

When I started submitting songs I had just released my album. I thought the songs I was submitting were polished and final since they had just been formally published. My initial reviews from Taxi were more positive than negative by far, but the suggestion about revising some of the songs hit me like a ton of bricks. I gave that a lot of thought and realized that it was good to hear that. I am now taking things to the next level thanks to Taxi.

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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by neuphoria » Mon Oct 09, 2006 9:49 am

of course, there are also some awful suggestions/critiques... one screener's suggestion was a track re-title. He suggested i change it from it's 3 word, concise-yet-intriguing title, which lays out the story (and backstory) of the song (whichi is an emotional ballad of lost love) to what basically was a cold, uninviting mathematical phrase. the suggestion was so off that it did make me wonder if the screener had listened to the whole song. (this comment was really from another thread, added here for simply for a different perspective to the above posts, and mainly for people coming in from the newsletter to here another side.)

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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by darkmage » Mon Oct 09, 2006 10:40 am

Hi all,Thought I'd put my bit in on this one.With regards to the critiquing, I think its quite good to have someone review your music and critique the hell out of it. It keeps you grounded and focused on making better music and its always better when your critiquer doesn't pull any punches, but sometimes when its mentioned that the song submitted is a little off the listing topic/type, I think this is a bit unfair in many cases.If you look at the songs of some of the artists that are listed in listings as examples, they are mostly VERY different types of artists covering a VERY broad range.For example, with this listing, I've never heard the Goo Goo Dolls sound anything like Sheryl Crow or Gwen Stefani, either lyrically, spiritually or musically.This leads to a very broad interpretation of what could be submitted.If the bands/artists listed were more similar, there would be less confusion about what constitutes a Gwen Stefaniish, Goo Goo Dollian with Sheryl Crow highlights.I'm sure you understand my point here.Each artist sound is different in my opinion and fair enough, specific companies are looking for preferences to the type of music they want, but maybe they should list bands that sound even remotely similar.About the only thing that Sheryl Crow and Gwen Stefani have in common is that their names share a few of the same letters.I've been listening to No Doubt for years and same with Sheryl Crow and they appeal to very different audiences.I applaud TAXI's work and believe it is a great organization to be a part of, but think since TAXI are the experts in music that they should select the category and listing to submit artists songs to or possibly have a song category for music that DOESN'T SEEM TO FIT ANYWHERE ELSE.Still charge the submission fee, whatever, as we understand this is how TAXI make their monies (and we all have to live) but then hook the artist up to wherever they think the song fits, not necessarily where the artists perceives themselves.As you can probably see, TAXI, many of the artists/bands perceive themselves as fitting into a particular genre, when really they fit somewhere else totally.Saves all the headaches of "You've submitted to the wrong category" type of critiques. Alternative 2: Critiquer says "Song listing #xxx is suitable to your song, though, so I've forwarded it to there instead".Alternative 3: Give people the ability to respond to the critiquer directly and talk to them about what they were trying to achieve. A lot of the time, with a little explanation, the artists can explain the reasons they went for a particular hook, etc. or why they changed, this, that or the other.Just my 2 cents.

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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by hummingbird » Mon Oct 09, 2006 10:59 am

Okay so a screener gets a song submitted to a listing it doesn't fit. They find that out by listening, and giving feedback. You're suggesting that they then move your song into another listing's inbasket so another screener can listen to it to determine if it's even forwardable. I can see this creating all kinds of hassles on Taxi's end... how even to keep track of what was submitted for 101010NR that was moved to 111111SS, never mind taking up the time of two screeners to hear the same song.I also don't think screeners have the time (and I certainly wouldn't want to pay a hefter submission fee) to argue the reasons a song didn't make the cut with a Taxi member. This is the music industry, they pass on music all the time, for many reasons. How many of us when receiving our returns would like to defend our music? How much time would screeners spend arguing their decisions? It wouldn't be an effective way to run Taxi. Just remember, the screener is acting on behalf of the listee - who wouldn't take a moment to discuss with you why they didn't choose to use your music.A far simplier solution to this that only takes a minute or two - if the screener has the knowledge - is to give specific feedback on the choice of listing. In other words, I send my contemporary country song in, and if the screener does *not* tick "on target for this listing", they give an idea of what category the song fits.... 'try submitting this song to Americana a la Los Lobos or...' If I could be told what style a certain song is and who it is similar to, that would help a lot.cheersHummin'bird
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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by darkmage » Mon Oct 09, 2006 11:16 am

Quote:Okay so a screener gets a song submitted to a listing it doesn't fit. They find that out by listening, and giving feedback. You're suggesting that they then move your song into another listing's inbasket so another screener can listen to it to determine if it's even forwardable. I can see this creating all kinds of hassles on Taxi's end... how even to keep track of what was submitted for 101010NR that was moved to 111111SS, never mind taking up the time of two screeners to hear the same song.I also don't think screeners have the time (and I certainly wouldn't want to pay a hefter submission fee) to argue the reasons a song didn't make the cut with a Taxi member. This is the music industry, they pass on music all the time, for many reasons. How many of us when receiving our returns would like to defend our music? How much time would screeners spend arguing their decisions? It wouldn't be an effective way to run Taxi. Just remember, the screener is acting on behalf of the listee - who wouldn't take a moment to discuss with you why they didn't choose to use your music.A far simplier solution to this that only takes a minute or two - if the screener has the knowledge - is to give specific feedback on the choice of listing. In other words, I send my contemporary country song in, and if the screener does *not* tick "on target for this listing", they give an idea of what category the song fits.... 'try submitting this song to Americana a la Los Lobos or...' If I could be told what style a certain song is and who it is similar to, that would help a lot.cheersHummin'birdI agree that it might make it a little more difficult, but with the advent of computers, its really not that difficult to change the code that is attached to the song submission.I'm sure they're all posted to a database somewhere and its not difficult to just change where its being submitted to.An alternative would be, as you're saying, for the critiquer to suggest other possible listing the song may be more suited to.Like I was saying, sometimes people believe their song fits into a category, whereas it may be suited to somewhere else (another listing) a little better.

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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by matto » Mon Oct 09, 2006 11:55 am

Quote:About the only thing that Sheryl Crow and Gwen Stefani have in common is that their names share a few of the same letters. Actually, you forgot something VERY important that they both have in common: they get played on some of the same radio stations, such as Adult Top 40 and CHR. Since radio is a MAJOR factor in any record label's thinking, this is really quite important...Quote:I've been listening to No Doubt for years and same with Sheryl Crow and they appeal to very different audiences. kind of a contradictory statement don't you think? Quote:I applaud TAXI's work and believe it is a great organization to be a part of, but think since TAXI are the experts in music that they should select the category and listing to submit artists songs toThis could work, but it would greatly increase the cost of membership because, at the very least, songs would have to be screened twice (once to "presort" them, then to screen them in context of the listing they were assigned to). Also...how would you submit songs to Taxi then? Just send them everything you got and let them sort it out and file it on your behalf? Honestly, I'd rather keep Taxi operating the way it is now (and keep the membership fee down). I really don't think it's too much to ask of an artist/songwriter/composer to do a little research to figure out where their music fits or doesn't. People do it all the time.Quote:or possibly have a song category for music that DOESN'T SEEM TO FIT ANYWHERE ELSE. Generally speaking, the music business isn't all that interested in stuff that doesn't fit anywhere, cause it's an utter nightmare to market. Nevertheless, Taxi has a "hard to classify" category for the occasional off-the-wall listing.Quote:Give people the ability to respond to the critiquer directly and talk to them about what they were trying to achieve. A lot of the time, with a little explanation, the artists can explain the reasons they went for a particular hook, etc. or why they changed, this, that or the other.There's really no point in this that I can see. It's not like the screener is gonna change his/her mind once (s)he understands your "vision". One of the cardinal rules of songwriting is: if you have to explain your song in order for people to "get" it, you didn't do a very good job writing it. No A&R person is ever gonna read your song "explanation", and radio isn't gonna broadcast it either... matto

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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by davewalton » Mon Oct 09, 2006 12:30 pm

Quote:but sometimes when its mentioned that the song submitted is a little off the listing topic/type, I think this is a bit unfair in many cases.This is kind of like the losing team saying that the game was unfair because the wind was blowing. Wasn't the wind blowing on both teams? The only case I could think of this being "unfair" is if no one got forwarded because the listing was too confusing. Honestly, plenty of submissions get forwarded for each listing and those people that got forwarded got it right. Asking Taxi to catagorize our submissions is really (unintentionally) dumbing us down from the real world. Maybe not so much for someone who is wanting to be the next pop star but for anyone who is even considering writing music for film, television, and/or music libraries. You HAVE to be able to read and interpret these listings successfully, or rather be willing to learn to do that. In the case of someone wanting to be a pop star, if they can't correctly identify which listing their music falls into, how in the world are they going to market themselves and describe their music (correctly) to others? Targeting your songs (or correctly knowing what your songs really are) is, in my opinion, a learnable and necessary skill for those that have the mindset to do so. Dave==============================PS - Recent "listings" from a music supervisor's mailing list:Do you have anything that is or sounds like Authentic sounding music from Taiwan?Do you have anything that sounds like Vince Guaraldi's Linus And Lucy ( from Charile Brown / Peanuts )?Do you have any intense opera music or opera esque music appropriate for an epic/intense horror film?We (those of us fortunate enough to be on his list) turn in the music to the best of our abilities. No critiques, no feedback, no nothing. And asking "did my piece work and if not, why not" is also NOT an option. Pestering this guy with endless questions about his less than descriptive requests is NOT an option. Taxi is the practice game. It's up to us to play by the rules so we're ready for the real game. Strange but true.

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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by andreh » Mon Oct 09, 2006 2:11 pm

Quote:If you look at the songs of some of the artists that are listed in listings as examples, they are mostly VERY different types of artists covering a VERY broad range.DarkMage-I see where you're coming from; I've often thought listing parties could do better for themselves if they were more targeted in their listings. Many of them want to keep the field open to a certain extent because "they'll know what they want when they hear it."However, Taxi isn't responsible for crafting the listing descriptions as far as I know; they're only responsible for screening them appropriately. So, we have to accept the opportunities as they're presented.On your other comments, I think matto and Dave have spoken well. The music biz is what it is; we can either rebel against it (which I've done on more than one occasion myself), or accept it for what it is and increase our chance of being at peace with (not to mention profiting from) it.Andre
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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by Casey H » Tue Oct 10, 2006 12:41 am

You never forget your first rejection... Casey

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Re: My first rejection -- I'm so excited

Post by stoneman » Tue Oct 10, 2006 7:12 am

The first time I joined Taxi it was in the early 90's. During that time there was no online service because there was no online. So, I had to send in cassette tapes of the songs I was writing. All 15 songs I submitted were rejected but I paid close attention to the critiques I received in the mail. They ranged from poor writing, incompatible with the listings etc. Frustrated and dejected I did not renew my subscription the following year. Then, I joined again around about 1996 or so. I was so confident that my writing had improved that I sent in my songs expecting to get them all forwarded. However, once again all the songs were rejected and once again I limped away from Taxi with my musical tail between my legs. Ironically, several of the songs I sent in that year got signed by a Publisher in Atlanta and that was all due to my won "blind" marketing efforts. However, this small time publisher never did anything with the songs they signed.Then in 2000 I won the Unisong Contest (4th place Hip-Hop) and felt that I must be good enough to get some songs forwarded now. I joined again and sent in some songs including my winning song that all those Grammy winning writers had voted great amongst thousands of songs they judged. Once again, my songs were politely dismissed by Taxi and I limped away with total disbelief. I vowed that that was it for me. No more Taxi ever again. Then, last year I joined again. By now my songs had won in the Billboard songwriting contest, Song Of The Year contest, and I had had 17 songs signed to publishing deals and two commercial releases. I was puffed up and because they offered a money back guarantee from Taxi in there constant I mailings, I joined again.But alas, my online submissions were all rejected. Even my contest winning songs were rejected again. I was so distraught that I called and asked for a refund. I vowed that that would be it for me with Taxi. Publishers and producers all over the world love my songs. But Taxi? Same old same old.Then, this year I won 1st place in the Unisong Contest and one of my prizes was a free one year subscription to guess who? Taxi. This time I submitted my songs with the expectation that I once again would not be able to cut the Taxi mustard. The result? For the first time in about 16 years of trying, my song "Danger!!" was forwarded with a glowing review. I am hopeful that it will be signed but there are no guarantees.So heres my take on why I think I got forwarded this time. In 16 years of continuous writing, producing ( I even went back to school and got a recording eng. degree) I have become a very good writer. My music constantly scores high in contests and this year I have had 5 songs in 4 genre's signed to deals all by own personal pitching activities. Taxi is tough because they look for the best music to offer their clients. Over the years I have paid close attention to all my rejection reviews. I paid attention and I did everything I could be a top line songwriter/producer/musician. It is now beginning to pay off with royalty checks. My advise to those that get rejected is to keep honing your craft. Keep writing good songs. It takes dedication and persistence. Rejection is only an opportunity to get better. Don't be discouraged by it, be inspired by it. The very next song you write could be the one that gets you there. 16 years and over 400 songs in 12 genres later, I am finally seeing the light ahead.Be Blessed,Stoneman
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