Rant?

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Casey H
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Re: Rant?

Post by Casey H » Tue Jun 26, 2007 8:19 am

Quote: I would feel terrible about using someone's services, Steve, without being able to pay them. Hi again Walt,You might not see it this way but a co-write can be a way of paying them. Many people are happy to trade services for co-write as well as for the fun and the benefit of having more songs in their catalog. Casey

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Re: Rant?

Post by hummingbird » Tue Jun 26, 2007 8:43 am

Hey Walter, I hear where you are coming from. Before I joined Taxi I made my "demos" (believe it or not), by playing Band in a Box through the speakers & recording that... and then recording my vocals over that, using free software from the net & a $20 computer mic I got from Future Shop. I happen to remember the first couple of songs I submitted.... I hope the screeners don't. Then I paid a recording studio somewhere around $3000 (borrowed) to produce demos of 6 songs. We're talking a LOT of money - because, as an artist, my net income for a year tends to be less than $10,000. And, after joining Taxi, and submitting everything to everything... I was disappointed to discover that those 6 songs were not anywhere near being commercially viable. Money down the drain! So far I estimate I've invested (including going to the Road Rally (x2) + 3 years of membership + demo costs + submissions + buying computer equipment & software + songwriting workshops, etc)... at least, at the very least, about $15,500 in the last 3 years. That doesn't include paying a producer twice over to produce my not-that-great-indie-CD... duh. And that doesn't include my education in voice - 17 years of training - over $40,000+ I would think. A voice that I pretty much can't use in submitting music for listings because it is too pure & well trained for most contemporary music - even for demos! How disappointing do you imagine that is to me?? So I concentrate on learning the composition & production of instrumentals, something I can do, myself, at home, on my dearly-wished-for-and-very-expensive-hope-I-can-pay-it-off-this-millenium-custom-built-audio-computer.In attending the Rally's I learned three very important things: where I am in the food chain now, and where I want to go -- and how to get there. To me that has been the biggest value of my Taxi membership. Through Taxi critiques; consulting with John Braheny; attending songwriting workshops; taking classes at SongU; reading books, articles & magazines on songwriting & production & marketing; and membership in several songwriting boards, in particular, this one; I have continued to invest time and effort in 'getting there'.... and I am certain that if I do the work I will get the pay off... someday.My voice teacher used to say to me (very annoyingly), "there is no substitute for time and experience". That means there is a process to "becoming" who you are meant to be.I think Casey's suggestion is an excellent one -- find yourself one or more co-writers with good commercial instincts & professional attitudes. You split the song ownership 50-50 (get it in writing) and work together to create a commercially viable composition. Then you do a simple worktape & get a custom critique, and rewrite / rework. Then you get yourself a excellent vocal/piano or vocal/guitar demo and start pitching the song.I hope some of that makes sense. Above all - hang in there!!!!!!warmlyHumminb'ird
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Re: Rant?

Post by anne » Tue Jun 26, 2007 6:28 pm

Hi Walt - I want to wish you well with your situation. I sent you a p.m. with my very similar experience with the hope it might help. Keep the faith, brother. You'll make it through.

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Re: Rant?

Post by horacejesse » Wed Jun 27, 2007 12:44 am

I am poor and every dollar dents my monthly budget, except I do not have such a thing. I have my computer set up in a garage because I have no actual residence at the moment. I do own half of a small, commercial studio where the landlords will not allow me to reside. You see, I actually let my residence go before I was willing to let the studio go. I can live without a residence, but I cannot live without a place to record.Your situation is really difficult, Walt. Health is the whole world. When your health is in jeopardy, you learn there was no reason to cry about anything before. I hope this gigantic burden is soon lifted from you and you can go on with your life feeling like a normal human being again.All you did was voice a thought almost every Taxi member has had. I well understand that frustration. Like Bird, I was stunned by the initial returns I received. In one and a half years I have gotten one forward out of about thirty attempts. I do believe that would be considered lousy by any standard.A person joins Taxi because their expectations are up, way up. The initial letdown (and I am sure there usually is one) is bound to be a fierce one. No problem, right? We have all been let down harder than a Taxi return. That is a mere sting in the world of letdowns, as you know well.What am I going to do with that $300, buy a mansion? This is still the best place to be for me, because I have a studio, health and the means to improve. I know it is so much tougher for non-players with no studio to get their stuff presentable. Casey amazes me because he does well without all of the above, showing the possibilities of savvy and insistence. I do not care for the word determination. I would rather insist on being successful. It is an inner thing, not a public relations technique that shows much promise.I know you were just talking and do not want your money back any more than I do. The stuggle goes on.

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Re: Rant?

Post by horacejesse » Fri Jun 29, 2007 12:54 pm

Quote:A voice that I pretty much can't use in submitting music for listings because it is too pure & well trained for most contemporary music - even for demos! How disappointing do you imagine that is to me?? Hey, Vicki, I know you sing opry. It surprises me that you cannot use your voice for anything else. What I heard you sing did not sound like opry. Can't you rough it up and sing 'em down and dirty? What prevents that?

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Re: Rant?

Post by hummingbird » Fri Jun 29, 2007 6:52 pm

Quote:Quote:A voice that I pretty much can't use in submitting music for listings because it is too pure & well trained for most contemporary music - even for demos! How disappointing do you imagine that is to me?? Hey, Vicki, I know you sing opry. It surprises me that you cannot use your voice for anything else. What I heard you sing did not sound like opry. Can't you rough it up and sing 'em down and dirty? What prevents that?I have tried, believe me. I think it's hard to throw away 17 years of training - it always feels unnatural if I try to sing with a twang (something I don't think is necessary because countless country singers sing clean vowels without twang - Faith Hill, Shania Twain, Martina McBride). I think too, that it is my voice type - my voice is kinda like Enya crossed with Sarah Brightman - can you imagine either of them doing R&B or country rock? I always tell my students, if you're born with a 'flute voice' you can't force it to be a 'trumpet voice'. You just go and find all the beautiful 'flute voice' music and sing that. I will keep trying out the other stuff & eventually maybe I'll find my place
"As we are creative beings, our lives become our works of art." (Julia Cameron)

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Re: Rant?

Post by nomiyah » Fri Jun 29, 2007 7:34 pm

Quote:Quote:Hey, Vicki, I know you sing opry. It surprises me that you cannot use your voice for anything else. What I heard you sing did not sound like opry. Can't you rough it up and sing 'em down and dirty? What prevents that?I have tried, believe me. I think it's hard to throw away 17 years of training - it always feels unnatural if I try to sing with a twang (something I don't think is necessary because countless country singers sing clean vowels without twang - Faith Hill, Shania Twain, Martina McBride). I think too, that it is my voice type - my voice is kinda like Enya crossed with Sarah Brightman - can you imagine either of them doing R&B or country rock? I always tell my students, if you're born with a 'flute voice' you can't force it to be a 'trumpet voice'. You just go and find all the beautiful 'flute voice' music and sing that. I will keep trying out the other stuff & eventually maybe I'll find my place Vikki, You're in the Wise Person club... along with the guru of Yosemite (Yosematto)

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Re: Rant?

Post by davewalton » Sat Jun 30, 2007 2:11 am

Quote:I think too, that it is my voice type - my voice is kinda like Enya crossed with Sarah Brightman - can you imagine either of them doing R&B or country rock? I always tell my students, if you're born with a 'flute voice' you can't force it to be a 'trumpet voice'. And whatever anyone does has to be convincing. I can't imagine you doing a convincing "Janis Joplin" or "Kim Carnes" (Betty Davis Eyes). And of course they'd never be able to pull off your sound either. So you got me thinking, what instrument is MY voice... hmmm... not a flute, no, not a trumpet... closest thing would be a trombone without the trombone part, just playing through the mouthpiece by itself.

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Re: Rant?

Post by gitarrero » Thu Jul 05, 2007 6:44 am

hey walt,I don't know about your health situation - is it serious? anyway, I wish you all the best with it!having said that, the reality is that your personal situation doesn't influence the business that happens around you, e.g. a store won't give you a discount just because you run out of money this morning.I don't have a family, so I just have to support myself, and that works great. I don't have tons of money to spend, but I can live easely, pay all bills, buy a new guitar or so from time to time, etc - and that all with working 2 days/week in a office (plus the income from music, which is not that much yet). so I think we need to simply make a budget for whatever life we want to live. I don't have money to spend for a car, I don't go out for dinner, I don't go in discos etc - other folks do that and it's important for them, for me it's important to have time for me & my music.so it comes down to what we want and the price we pay for.I know several people who ear about 4-5 k $ a month in their regular job but moaning that they don't like what they do. honestly, I don't want to change my situation with them, even if I could buy a fancy car, go 3 times a year in vacation etc.cheers,martin
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Re: Rant?

Post by leerjet5lr » Wed Jul 11, 2007 6:44 am

How Taxi has helped me.Well, I joined taxi in 2004, if I remember correctly.After 70 submissions, and a 70 to 0 ratio, I thought to myself, Wow, if I haven’t figured it out in 30 years, I am probably not going to.However, I recently received a very encouraging review from taxi.I took advantage of a “free review” offer a while back. The catch was this. The song that I picked was an up and coming song on the country charts Titled “Some people change”.No, I did not re-record it. I sent the actual song, being curios what kind of response I would get.The review I got back was interesting. It was suggested that I re-categorize it as AAA Album rock, and try releasing it on my own, as it had no real market potential as a song pitch.The other key suggestion was that if I could get the production values up, it may be a pitch for something in TV, or Film. Mmm? Last time I looked, it was in the top 5.I guess there is some hope for me after all.I get a lot out of the articles as well.

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