Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting....

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Casey H
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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by Casey H » Thu Jul 27, 2006 2:45 am

Quote:One reason songs get on the records & the radio is that the talent or the producer liked them, or wrote them. When unknowns submit (me, for instance), we are not competing with those songs, but with the really good ones that are being considered. Finding trashy songs on the radio, even if they are successful, doesn't mean much. We have to learn to be better than the best songs, not the worst. And they have to meet standards. The standards might be right or wrong, but they exist. In my opinion, one of the benefits of being in Taxi is getting help learning what those standards are. I've learned a great deal in a few months and it is sharpening my song writing skills...and not just in terms of writing for commercial markets. I feel I am understanding the process more every day (cause I am writing every day). The feedback has helped me understand the feedback from outsiders as well, in terms of reading between the lines. Matto's explanations of genre, comments from people who have not gotten forwards as well as those who have, all help, especially when I add them to the info on the critiques. I try things, adapt them, and see if I am achieving the goals.So, for me at least, Taxi is worth the money even though I am the "Submission returned" poster child. As Robert Ringer said, if you aren't being successful, check your face for slap marks; if there aren't any, you aren't trying hard enough. The double standard is real. Accept it or get out of the business. New, unknown writers are held to an incredibly high standard that established writers or those with connections are not. If a known writer presented a song to an artist but the artist didn't like 1-2 lyric lines, they would consider the song with minor changes. We don't have that option.... Sad but true... Casey

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by matto » Thu Jul 27, 2006 5:21 am

Ed absolutely hit the nail on it's head. There comes a time in every songwriter's life when we realize that we need to successfully compete against the best songs out there, not the bad or mediocre ones.And before we complain too much about life not being fair and such, let's remember that just about every successful writer or artist had to go thru the same thing. Kenny Chesney for example (who sings and I believe wrote one of the songs mentioned by toncart) slaved away for years and years to become the star he is today, being told by just about every label that he would never make it with his "horrible nasal voice", "premature baldness" and "dorky songs" etc etcYet he persevered anyway...why shouldn't we?

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by gunter » Thu Jul 27, 2006 5:54 am

Quote:...let's remember that just about every successful writer or artist had to go thru the same thing. Kenny Chesney for example (who sings and I believe wrote one of the songs mentioned by toncart) slaved away for years and years to become the star he is today, being told by just about every label that he would never make it with his "horrible nasal voice", "premature baldness" and "dorky songs" etc etcYet he persevered anyway...why shouldn't we? ...and Mark D. Sanders, Quote:What is your (Ralph Murphy) favorite success story? You'd have to be looking at Mark D. Sanders at the moment. He has the #1 and #2 records. He has like six in the Top 20. He languished around here for ten years before he finally cracked it. He was just writing everyday and pushing and kicking. It's quite astonishing to look at the charts and see him stacked up there.What are the songs that are happening now?"Don't Get Me Started," #1. "Daddy's Money," #2. "My Heart Has a History," #18. "Blue Clear Sky" by George Strait which was #1 about three weeks ago. He had a couple more up there recently that have since dropped off. Well that's not too bad. Four songs in the Top-20! Yeah, he's doing real well. And it took him ten years to do it. Well, that's the reality. Sure. What can I say?

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by bc » Thu Jul 27, 2006 7:24 am

2 more cents...sharp or flat I hate taxi reviews. I love taxi reviews. I'm an artist. I, I, I. Will be taking advantage of networking opp that occured recently. Guess what, as ticked off as "some" review critiques have made me, I will be using those same songwriting conventions to improve my chances of going from a fly on the wall to a cut on a cd shortly. In particular; a pre chorus lift into the chorus, with strong sectional contrast to really make the chorus stand out. And, as Jeff Steele pointed out, my chorus' will use as many half and or whole notes as appropriate. Tho I've written hundreds of good songs over the years, these (taxi) radio ready writing conventions have helped above mentioned networking opps to bear fruit. Yep, there are some shoddy, and down right ignorant reviews every now and then, but over all, my efforts to crack pop radio have been improved exponentially by taxi. best,bc

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by toncart » Thu Jul 27, 2006 7:27 am

Quote:Ed absolutely hit the nail on it's head. There comes a time in every songwriter's life when we realize that we need to successfully compete against the best songs out there, not the bad or mediocre ones.And before we complain too much about life not being fair and such, let's remember that just about every successful writer or artist had to go thru the same thing. Kenny Chesney for example (who sings and I believe wrote one of the songs mentioned by toncart) slaved away for years and years to become the star he is today, being told by just about every label that he would never make it with his "horrible nasal voice", "premature baldness" and "dorky songs" etc etcYet he persevered anyway...why shouldn't we? I agree with alot of what you are saying. We do need to compete against the "good" songs. That will only make our songs better. Even the "bad" songs must be good sometimes though because we make them hits for the artist because sometimes "bad is good". A lot of the embarassing country songs are my guilty peasures. I don't want TAXI's screeners only looking for the next "The Dance" or other gem that is so rare in country music. Those songs are few and far between and we know it. I have not had any response yet to any of my submissions, so I don't want to sound negative, I just want to be treated fairly. If a screener listens to my songs and knows immediately that they are not instant classics, but knows that it could be a commercial success with the right artist, I expect to get a forward. I personally joined TAXI to get my songs "out there". I did not join TAXI to become a better songwriter, although the process is going to make that happen regardless. There are other organizations that I use for building songwriting "chops". I joined TAXI because it was a vehicle to get my songs in the hands of people who can do something with them. Let's be honest here, we all think our songs should be in the hands of the right artist. Right? Some will make the cut and some will not, but hopefully the screeners will get it right. Posting on here is tough. For every person that has a concern, 3 people come to TAXI's defense. I guess that is a good thing, but honestly, how many hit songs has TAXI been a part of? I would love to see the statistics on how many songs have been submitted over the years compared to how many songs got forwarded and cut by an artists. I'm speaking from the country standpoint. I know that a couple of guys had a hit with Kenny Rogers, but I can't really find much else. If the success stories are out there, I want to hear them. I'm needing some confidence in what I am doing here. Am I playing the musical lottery or what? Is it still a one in a million chance to get a song heard? I joined TAXI in hopes to make those odds better. We will see.

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by toncart » Thu Jul 27, 2006 8:27 am

Quote:Quote:I don't want TAXI's screeners only looking for the next "The Dance" or other gem that is so rare in country music. Those songs are few and far between and we know it.Well, it's really the party who places the listing who determines what the screeners will be listening for. If they're only interested in stuff that's on the level of "The Dance", the screeners will be extremely tough. It's been my experience that when a Nashville company places a listing with Taxi, they usually are looking for exceptional material. Because "good" songs are a dime a dozen in Nashville; nobody even needs to move a finger to "find" those.This is not Taxi's fault of course, it's simply a reality of the (country) music business.I hate to agree with you, but you are right. "Good" songs are everywhere. It's just that when I hear an "ok" song on the radio, I can't help but think, "Why couldn't they just play my song?"

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by matto » Thu Jul 27, 2006 9:03 am

Quote:It's just that when I hear an "ok" song on the radio, I can't help but think, "Why couldn't they just play my song?" I don't think there's a songwriter alive who hasn't had that thought... Also...a comment on something else you mentioned in your previous post: If we're gonna be completely honest, I think not one of us initially joined Taxi because we wanted to become better songwriters ...we all thought we were plenty good enough and wanted to simply take advantage of the opportunities Taxi offers.Then we got our first rejection... . Some people simply get pissed off and even discouraged by a negative critique and a return/rejection. They blame Taxi and usually quit in short order.Other people also get pissed off ...but after stewing for a while, look at that critique again and, in the privacy of their own homes....admit that the screener might actually have a point...or two. Thus a learning process begins. And for people who have the perseverence, and the willingness to learn, and a true passion for what they do, that process often ultimately leads to success. It usually takes a while though. Taxi is definitely NOT a get-rich-quick scheme. And it's definitely not easy...more like a love-hate relationship of sorts...until you get your first bonafide success...then love tends to get the upper hand ...matto

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by bc » Thu Jul 27, 2006 9:22 am

...love tends to get the upper hand.Title of my next country tune bc

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by davewalton » Thu Aug 03, 2006 2:13 am

Quote:I have to say that the black balled comment, or the idea that offending the screeners will create a bias against our future submissions is seriously something that I wonder about.No offense, but you, me, the rest of us, we're not that important. Taxi has thousands of members with usually more than a hundred listings active at any one time. This means that there are a LOT of songs being critiqued and listened to every day. For them to single out you, me, anyone else, would be a monumental effort and none of us are important enough to warrent that kind of attention. They're there to screen songs. There's really nothing more sinister to it than that. Quote:A big issue for me is the idea that, these songs seem to be getting screened on random consumer stereo systems, because sound quality is one thing that should NOT differ so much in opinion. High quality is high quality, if one professional thinks so, they should all at least have scores around the same ballpark. With that said, I have yet another experience to solidify the notion that these songs may infact, be screened on consumer stereos rather then professional flat frequency response monitor speakers. Why wouldn't you just give Taxi and call and ask or maybe fire up the "Taxi cam" where you can see the whole thing? It's not a secret. I know and can tell you that they evaluate the music in a "quiet room" in cubicles on headphones (nice headphones) and how could they do otherwise? Using speakers, any speakers, would mean that each reviewer would have to have his/her own personal sound-isolated booth. Send your music directly to Capitol records and chances are that they'll review your music the same way Taxi does. But really, talk to Taxi about this stuff. They're not a secret society and really very nice. You can even take a little tour through Taxi and meet everyone if you call and ask.Quote:Now, before I start I want to say, I in no way blame this reviewer for this, as this reviewer is the only reviewer (I've only had 3 different reviewers) who has analyzed my material to make what seems to be very honest, and thought provoked points. He's also the only one to give me any pointers on what I can actually do to improve the song...and before anyone asks, no I'm not boot licking because I was forwarded, as I was returned. This reviewer was #226, and he was very insightful, and has picked up on things the other reviewers have not.That is my experience as well. Some reviewers are more helpful than others (like anything, store clerks, waitresses, policemen) but over three years and at least a hundred submissions, I've found that helpful reviewers far outnumber the non-helpful reviewers.Quote:Anyway, this reviewer was the one who reviewed my "The Exorcism" the first time with a score of 8, 8, 8, 7, 8, 8, 8, 8. The critique I received today was from the same reviewer #226, same song "The Exorcism", same version, only this time it scored 8, 8, 8, 7, 7, 7, 8, 8. Now, it's not that the score is THAT different, but do you notice how the only section the score differs in is production and engineering? I know it's only a difference of 1 point, but let's face it, one point means alot when you only have 10 to work with and a 9 looks a hell of alot better then an 8, as an 8 does a 7. From my point of view, the fact that anyone could review a song, then review hundreds, maybe thousands of songs, and then re-review the original song and come within 1 point of their original review, well this just demostrates amazing consistancy. 8's is all I ever get usually but that's no barrier to getting forwarded or placed. The main barrier is always how appropriate the music is for the listing.Quote:I really feel that it's important that experiences like my own are put here for people to read, because I really get the impression that there are alot of others out there thinking the same thing and not saying it because of the flaming they receive from loyal defensive TAXI members. Oh yeah... forum members don't post their real thoughts and just tremble in fear! I re-read my original reply and the replies of others to your original post and "flaming" is definitely not what you got. No one called you names or insulted you or your family personally. That's flaming and it just didn't happen. Re-read the replies of the people that took the time to respond to your concerns. Offering their own experience and/or disagreeing is not "flaming". Besides, several posts were responding to your request for free MP3 software. No flaming, sorry, no flaming.Quote:I say, play live, get the public talking about you. It's a long hard road, but at this stage, I think it's probably the only possible way to get that worth while recording contract.That is one way of many. I'd encourage you to keep an open mind and learn about pursuing other avenues as well. DavePS - Weren't you going to post some music at some point?PSS - Check out my post here:http://taxi.proboards27.com/index.cgi?a ... page=1It's an alternative and/or addition to both Taxi and "playing live and hoping for a contract". It's just another avenue to getting your music heard but I think because you're sending directly to the source that this might be something that might interest you.

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Re: Somthing odd? And ranting...Lots of ranting...

Post by Casey H » Thu Aug 03, 2006 2:44 am

Conspiracy theories abound...This is sooo funny...Many folks think that when you complain, threaten to cancel, or your membership is up for renewal, YOU SUDDENLY GET LOTS OF FORWARDS!!!So, which conspiracy is it?? Casey

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