Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by hummingbird » Wed Oct 10, 2007 7:16 pm

Quote:HOWEVER . . . I might list a return where I have made some changes according to the critique. But for now I've gone back in to my music page and added a note to the lyrics of my forwarded songs - example as follows:NOTE: forwarded for S070907CO by Listener ID #260To view listing go to: http://www.driskellsongs.com/S070907CO.pdfTo view forwarded critique go to: http://www.driskellsongs.com/tnoil_critique.pdfThink that'll fly?All you can do is try!
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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by avillaronga » Thu Oct 11, 2007 1:38 am

Quote:...I doubt there's any good way to accomplish this OTHER than perhaps what I suggested about a song being coded in some way once it's been forwarded so that a level of confidence can be established. I mean . . . why not figure out some way to code songs with the listing number it was forwarded on, so that the current screener can see what a previous screener thought a good pitch? Heck, even make it possible for the screener to view the previous critique if they wished. This wouldn't have to slow down the process. The screener wouldn't necessarily need to review the linked listings. If the screener just saw the code(s) there, that would be enough. But even if it slowed the process down a little, aren't the few songs being forwarded worth a little extra TLC?I respect your opinion and I can see where you're coming from but I, personally, would not like a system like that. I want the screener to listen to my song with a clean slate, no preconceived notions either positive or negative. For me, returns more often than not have to do with how appropriate the piece is for the listing rather than the quality of the song and having a listener know that a song has been forwarded before could never ensure that the same song will be appropriate for a different listing. I wouldn't want to get forwarded for something that maybe wasn't a 100% match simply because the listener got a warm and fuzzy feeling about it from previous reviews of the song; a potential relationship could be doomed because the listing party received inappropriate material. Once you submit enough you'll start to notice the trends in different listeners, how they react to a certain piece of music. And a lot of them will remember you and/or your work eventually. But I hope remembering you or a song from a previous critique does not influence the way they review for the listing they are reviewing at the moment. I think there was some talk about this on the Dave and HoraceJesse trip to taxi land thread; I believe screeners are trained not to be influenced in that way and, as I said, I like it that way. Now, if you have gotten a critique that only had one sentence or did not offer much in the way of an explanation, I would call Taxi's 800 number and ask to speak to Sebastian to politely ask about this. If a listener has written a review like that, in my opinion, they are not doing their job properly.My 0.02 worth...Antonio

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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by bigdrisk » Thu Oct 11, 2007 2:51 am

Antonio, I can appreciate where you're coming from, too. But if you DO end up in a working relationship with a publisher, it is most likely that your songs will be handled in the way I'm describing. The person you communicate with will like certain songs of yours, then play it for the creative staff, and then the influence of others in that meeting will determine whether or not it gets pitched to the artist or producer who is looking. So you may have to get used to it.

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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by lsp » Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:00 am

I agree with Antonio.Calling Sebastian or emailing him can get you help.The folks at TAXI are really helpful and nice to work with.Ed

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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by avillaronga » Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:22 am

Quote:But if you DO end up in a working relationship with a publisher, it is most likely that your songs will be handled in the way I'm describing.I guess our different experiences have shaped our approaches which are, obviously, different. In my experience, no two publishers or libraries or whatever else, work the same. The publishing contracts I had in the early 90's were with a publisher that was a one-man shop, so there was no passing around in that situation, if he liked it, cool, if he didn't, he passed even if it was a great song. I'm not saying that's any better thant the way you describe (I could have probably used a second opinion that early in my career!). My point is simply that it makes more sense for us as artists to learn to adapt to the ways different avenues for promoting our music work instead of wanting company X to adapt to what is our perception of how business works or should work; it is much more likely (and possibly much more rewarding) for us to learn to adapt to Taxi and learn to play the system than the other way around; then when establishing a relationship with Publisher X or Library Y, we learn all over again and adapt to how that particular company works, and so on.I know your posting was more wishful thinking than an actual realistic expectation that Taxi would change in this way. But what you view as a "shortcoming" on Taxi's part is one of the things I like the most about Taxi. As I said, different approaches...

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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by hummingbird » Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:53 am

My point is simply that it makes more sense for us as artists to learn to adapt to the ways different avenues for promoting our music work instead of wanting company X to adapt to what is our perception of how business works or should work; it is much more likely (and possibly much more rewarding) for us to learn to adapt to Taxi and learn to play the system than the other way around; then when establishing a relationship with Publisher X or Library Y, we learn all over again and adapt to how that particular company works, and so on.Wise words, Antonio. We should all print that off and post on the wall next to the computer. As artists, pitching to the music industry, we have to play by their rules. If I, as a graphic designer, decide I want to do a creative look for someone who has asked for a corporate look, they will be mightly confused, and ask for changes. If I refuse to do the changes (what's wrong with what I've done, are you crazy?), they refuse to pay me. And likely, they won't come back the next time they have a project.
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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by bigdrisk » Thu Oct 11, 2007 5:20 am

Actually, I think the IDEAL scenario is to be fortunate enough to be in a writer/publisher relationship with one of those RARE people who really DO have both, an innate ability to hear a hit song, AND the courage to put their reputation on the line for it - without too much influence from others. My experience is that in 11 years of being a songwriter full-time, I really only met two of those people. Everyone else had either one but not the other, or neither. Therefore, since my last critique was done by Listener #260, my confidence level is not great that my songs are being evaluated by such gifted/courageous people. This ISN'T a slam at Taxi. I am grateful Taxi is here and doing what they are doing. In fact, I wish I had thought of the idea years ago! It is not only a good business, but one in which you really feel like you are helping people. As many people as it takes to listen to all the submittals (apparently at least 260) makes it impossible for them all to be such gifted/courageous people. My only thought was that since that is true, then is there a way to better proceed down the path where we all realize that, for the most part, Listeners could make more confident decisions "among" their peers (rather than isolated from them)? Obviously when a song is rejected, we wish someone else could listen to it without the influence of the previous person, and when a song is forwarded, we wish others COULD be influenced. Bottom line though - we shouldn't fear ANYONE's opinion of our work. It is the comprehensive opinions of others that will ultimately determine the real value of our work. In the isolated Taxi listening environment, the formula for me works this way: Since few people possess this rare gift of being able to pick a great song out of a stack of good to mediocre songs, then one forward out of ten submittals CAN still mean that a song is worth continued plugging. However, if a song is rejected ten out of ten times, then it is becoming clearer that the song may need to be shelved or at least rewritten (of course, even forwarded songs could sometimes use rewriting). It's just a little bit of a shame that when a song is forwarded once, it may take another ten submittals before another Listener has ears to "get it" again.In this discussion thread, I think we are finding out that this is not a very practical way for Taxi to work. But it doesn't keep me from wishing it could be.

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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by sgs4u » Thu Oct 11, 2007 5:55 am

Wishing that Taxi could be different is something we've all experienced. No harm in wishing. However, adding a line to your lyric or anything else, that says your song has been already been forwarded by screener "X" to listing ***, may also backfire. What I have noticed, is that any kind of expectation (that your great song should be forwarded) or written statement to that effect (which this would be), is summarily dismissed. I honestly think attaching any kind of quality identification could easliy have a detrimental effect on a screener. If your song is perfect for the listing it will get forwarded. If it's not perfect for the listing, it won't. Finding a unique way to identify your song's high level of quality, would strike me as bragging. But go ahead, maybe you'll get a jump on the competition. steve I would even go so far as to suggest that titling this thread, the way it's been titled, DOES NOT endear you to this company, or especially the "Don." When I first read the title of the thread it looked like, Nice company - but small penis. I sense an impending visit from the man with the guillotine.

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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by rcase » Thu Oct 11, 2007 6:06 am

Quote:Screeners listen to music within the framework of a particular listing, and they are hired to do so because their expertise is trusted by the listing client. Vikki, I take that statement to mean the listing client knows who is doing the screening for their listing. Is that true? If so, then I've learned something new about TAXI. I figured TAXI trusts the screener's expertise, but I didn't think a particular client would always be aware who at TAXI was doing the screening.Quote:On my worst days... I feel like totally giving up and getting a 'real job' I have one of those. I don't recommend it.
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Re: Inevitable Shortcomings of the Taxi System

Post by clonsberry » Thu Oct 11, 2007 6:11 am

Perhaps an 'appeal' button next to the big REJECTED! letters.Now.. you might think that everyone would appeal every returned song. Personally, I wouldn't. Most of my critiques (and the subsequent forwards/rejections) have been indisputable. (especially the forwards ) But there have been one or two that I thought were rejected on what seemed like a subjective detail.Of course, in cases like that, you can always call Taxi but I'm pretty sure Sebastian has enough work.. nor do I want to be the whiney guy that calls everytime I don't agree with something. (I'm saving my phone call for something BIG).And, of course, we have the option of disputing rejections on the shootout forums but does that accomplish anything for the existing listing? And.. the people on the forums.. dear to me as they are.. aren't Taxi. So this might be useful as a learning experience but in getting that song into that listing... I dunno.You can't practically and economically have a panel of screeners for every submission. Wouldn't THAT be cool? A la American Idol. But that's probably unsupportable as a business model.So.. how do you put in a working appeal process with some abuse safeguards? One idea that might be simple enough would be to have 10 appeals per membership period. If you really wanted that song to have a second shot, you hit [appeal] and the song is sent to a second screener and could still go to that listing. Maybe you only have 3 days from your rejection to post it. Generally, I'd be hitting it the same day for the times I used it. But.. if you get two Taxi screeners telling you it's not a fit, it removes some of the subjectivity factor.I don't think the overhead to Taxi would be unbearable but that's just a wild guess. I'm not saying the second screener would have to do a critique. Look at the listing. Listen to the song once. Pass or fail. Of course, if you've got 12000 or so people asking for an appeal, that's a huge workload. Then again, if you have 12000 people who think they deserve an appeal, maybe the initial process needs some changes.Dunno.. I'm not spouting or complaining. Just brainstorming out loud for the sake of brainstorming.Heh... you could make it real interesting and tack on another $5 for an appeal. How much do you believe in your song?

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