Its my belief that I don't truly have the right to criticize a listeners critique for the simple reason that their job is hard enough trying to determine what songs should be forwarded out of the hundreds of songs submitted. I'm sure everyone thinks their song should be forwarded, but for the Publishing companies, Record Co., and Movie production houses to take Taxi seriously, it is of the up most importance that Taxi forwards the absolute best songs available. And that task can be daunting to say the least, so i have the up most respect for that decision making process. That being said, here's my story. I recently submitted a package of songs (5 songs in all) to Listing #S080929NS (NEO-SOUL SONGS AND INSTRUMENTALS a la John Legend, D'Angelo, Anthony Hamilton, Donell Jones, etc. are wanted by an Independent Production Company which specializes in Gospel/Inspirational projects. These songs and tracks are for a new male artist who is a Contemporary Gospel singer in need of great songs with a positive message. The stylistic approach should be very current and hip, with a contemporary R&B/NeoSoul tone. Lyrically, the overall feel should be upbeat and inspirational. The Producer for this project will be screening the submissions himself, so submit your very best!). I submitted the package of songs via two separate submissions, all critiqued by the same listener (ID #254). On the surface, I should not or could not have a problem with my review. ID #254 gave my songs an overall average rating of 8.45 with one of my songs ("Back 2 Love"-vocal hook) garnering a perfect 10. Here's where i think a disservice has been done. Out of the five songs submitted, NONE were forwarded, including the song that received the 10 rating. The specific comments for the song rating the 10 are as follows; "I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!! However, I do feel it more identifiable with the Contemporary Jazz category. Please don't let that take anything away from this track. This is an amazing piece and the only thing missing, in my opinion, are well thought out piano solos during the verse sections. This song is a Hit!!!!!! This just might not have been the best listing to spotlight this amazing tune!" along with the two overall comments: " You're a masterful musician and Jazz producer! Your works are truly amazing, in my opinion, however, this wasn't the platform for this submission. This was a NeoSoul listing seeking works that compliment the current state of the Genre. John Legend would be an excellent reference. Consider studying his latest works to get an example of what this listing's sponsor was seeking after". AND "Joey, you are obviously a very talented soul that certainly creates great music. Your music feels good to the soul and your work carry an air of consistency that compliments the Genre very well. However, this was a listing seeking after Eclectic NeoSoul/Hip Hop fused works in the Likes of Erykah Badu, John Legend, and Musiq Soulchild. Consider referencing these artists to get a better example of what this listing was seeking after". The big issue for me is that all but one of my submissions were instrumental (which was a type of song the listing asked for) and that #254 had a difficult time adjusting to. All they heard was a jazz piece and didn't allow themselves to be more broad with their music genrefication. Even to go as far as giving me production tips on how to make this piece MORE Jazzy (her advice about the piano solos). The major problem i have is that all of the examples given to me (John Legend,Erykah Badu,Musiq Soulchild etc.) have roots of jazz in their background and is obvious in their music. Where I hear NeoSoul vocal, Listener ID #254 hears Jazz instrumental solo. The plain difference (in my humble opinion) between my package of songs and the artists songs the listener is referancing are the VOCALS themselves. Take the vocals off of John Legend,Erykah Badu,Musiq Soulchild tracks and #245 may feel the same about them. I understand and appreciate the fact that ID #254 hears the quality in my material, however, to rate the songs under this listing AT ALL knowing in their mind that the songs are inappropriate, does the submitter a disservice being that the more appropriate rating would be to check the N/A box since in their opinion the material is NOT APPLICABLE. I can swallow that a bit easier then to tell me how "masterful" a " Hit song" i have, but not good enough to forward. And I'm sure the listener didn't come to that conclusion easily being in the situation they found themselves in. (to forward or not to), That's why i can appreciate a situation Listener ID #246 found them self in regarding a submission of mine for Listing #S080320HH (Hip,Fun & upbeat Hip Hop/Rap Songs). Faced with a similar decision they stated in their general comments "I'm not quite sure if its the exact vibe that they were looking for, but I'm gonna push it through as its a solid song, and has some nice marketability to it". Lastly, even though Taxi has a Jazz Category, if i took the Listeners' advice to submit to Contemporary Jazz, I would only submit 2-3 times a year for those types of listings are rare. Again I hope this doesn't come off solely as a complaint. I just want to make sure that the right material will reach the ear of the right people. I keep thinking that if the critiquer found themselves rating my music so respectable, what would the Producer of the project think. At least give them a chance to say that this material is N/A. With that, I'll forever support Taxi and I thank you all for the work you do for us songwriters & producers. You can go to www.taxi.com/sasweetiemusic
to here the Songs submitted.