Accuracy II

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mladendomic
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Accuracy II

Post by mladendomic » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:44 pm

I am really not glad to pull the same subject again.

MUSIC SUPERVISOR for a beloved TV SHOW on a TOP CABLE NETWORK is searching for authentic JAPANESE SONGS and INSTRUMENTALS. Quoting the music supervisor, "We need a piece of music - of ANY STYLE or GENRE -- that can instantly convey the SPIRIT OF JAPANESE CULTURE."

You can do this with traditional Japanese instruments (e.g., flutes, zithers, gongs, etc.) or with vocal performances of Japanese lyrics. J-Pop? Yes. Traditional Japanese Folk Music? Absolutely! Japanese Rap? Why not! They're open to ALL genres and styles of music as long as the music sounds like it's from Japan.

Quoting the music supervisor again, "We're not sure stylistically what will work best to until we see the scene played back with music but we are open to all genres as long as the song contains strong motifs that create an immediate feeling of Japanese cultural history." Lyric themes are not an issue for this request but your submission (even in Japanese) must be PG rated. The estimated fee for this license is $500. This is DIRECT-to-SUPERVISOR so you keep 100% of the fees. You will NOT give up ANY of your master, publishing and writer's share! You must own or control 100% of BOTH the Master AND Composition rights to submit for this listing. Broadcast Quality is needed (excellent home recordings are fine.) All submissions will be screened on a YES/NO BASIS by a TAXI screener selected by the music supervisor. ALL submissions must be received no later than Monday, October 8, 2012, 10:00AM PDT. Domo arigato! TAXI #U121008JP


The screener's answer to my submission is:
"Rain In Japan" is slightly more introspective that what will work for this particular scene,

Which particular scene?
Is it a scene of a battle? Or a nature with mountains and sky? Bees and birds? Is it underwater? Is it a documentary or historical movie or scientific or love story or sitcom or storm scene or ....

In my opinion this is what makes submissions to Taxi sometimes look more like a buying a lottery ticket than participating in a real industry professional contest.

If there is a particular scene which needs music, why can't it be at least described in listing? I would really like to be able to submit music according to more complete information.

Am I being rude? :?

Casey H
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Re: Accuracy II

Post by Casey H » Tue Oct 09, 2012 4:45 pm

mladendomic wrote:I am really not glad to pull the same subject again.

MUSIC SUPERVISOR for a beloved TV SHOW on a TOP CABLE NETWORK is searching for authentic JAPANESE SONGS and INSTRUMENTALS. Quoting the music supervisor, "We need a piece of music - of ANY STYLE or GENRE -- that can instantly convey the SPIRIT OF JAPANESE CULTURE."

You can do this with traditional Japanese instruments (e.g., flutes, zithers, gongs, etc.) or with vocal performances of Japanese lyrics. J-Pop? Yes. Traditional Japanese Folk Music? Absolutely! Japanese Rap? Why not! They're open to ALL genres and styles of music as long as the music sounds like it's from Japan.

Quoting the music supervisor again, "We're not sure stylistically what will work best to until we see the scene played back with music but we are open to all genres as long as the song contains strong motifs that create an immediate feeling of Japanese cultural history." Lyric themes are not an issue for this request but your submission (even in Japanese) must be PG rated. The estimated fee for this license is $500. This is DIRECT-to-SUPERVISOR so you keep 100% of the fees. You will NOT give up ANY of your master, publishing and writer's share! You must own or control 100% of BOTH the Master AND Composition rights to submit for this listing. Broadcast Quality is needed (excellent home recordings are fine.) All submissions will be screened on a YES/NO BASIS by a TAXI screener selected by the music supervisor. ALL submissions must be received no later than Monday, October 8, 2012, 10:00AM PDT. Domo arigato! TAXI #U121008JP


The screener's answer to my submission is:
"Rain In Japan" is slightly more introspective that what will work for this particular scene,

Which particular scene?
Is it a scene of a battle? Or a nature with mountains and sky? Bees and birds? Is it underwater? Is it a documentary or historical movie or scientific or love story or sitcom or storm scene or ....

In my opinion this is what makes submissions to Taxi sometimes look more like a buying a lottery ticket than participating in a real industry professional contest.

If there is a particular scene which needs music, why can't it be at least described in listing? I would really like to be able to submit music according to more complete information.

Am I being rude? :?
My suggestion is send an email about this to headscreener _AT_ taxi dot.com... Sometimes posts here don't get read by the appropriate Taxi folks in a timely manner. That's definitely the best way to express these concerns.

If the "introspective" comment was about the lyrics, I agree that's at odds with what the listing said (e.g. lyric themes not an issue).

It was reviewed by someone hand picked by the listing party. Is it possible that the listing party didn't give Taxi as much detail as they had? It happens sometimes... Sometimes Taxi has to walk a fine line between pushing the listing party for more details and irritating them. My experience has been Taxi doesn't withhold anything they know that will be helpful to the members (other than the ID of the listing party, of course). Why would they? More on-target submissions are far more efficient for them and everyone concerned. Contrary to false rumors, they do not make money on submissions-- they barely cover the cost of paying the screeners. So, off-target submissions can actual be money losers for them.

Anyway contact the head screener who I can assure you will cheerfully discuss this with you and look into it. Let us know what happens!

Best,
:D Casey

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Re: Accuracy II

Post by davewalton » Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:54 pm

mladendomic wrote:
Am I being rude? :?
Don't worry. We won't whack you over the head with a newspaper or anything. ;)

There is one general comment I can make and that's the perception that the Taxi listings are somehow vague while beyond Taxi, things are always more clear. I think many of us can attest to the fact that since the listings are basically provided by the listing company, that's the same information you'd get if you were working with them directly. And in this case you are. They wrote the listing, they provided the person to screen. Taxi is really out of this one, bypassed completely other than them running the listing.

Outside of Taxi, descriptions of what libraries or shows want is equally vague. It's just that way. The issue is that SOMEBODY gets it right. In a sense (a) they don't feel like that have to get real specific because somebody always hits the mark and (b) they're usually not musicians and many times they describe things from a "laymans" point of view.

My very first direct-to-show assignment, which I wanted to do really, really well on, was this (word-for-word, I swear)...

Funky country americana with a little bit of rock :shock:

There was no opportunity to say "Um... that's really vague and there is no such thing. Can you clarify?". I just did my best, another composer and I each listened to each others tracks before submitting and we concluded that either we both did really well or we were both screwed. :lol: We kinda got lucky, the tracks were good enough to be accepted and have been placed several times.

Anyway, the point is that the whole industry is fairly vague when requesting music. We all wish it were different but you get used to it. It's not too bad really and the more music you write, the better you get at hitting those hard-to-understand requests.

Don't despair... you'll rise to meet the challenge. 8-)

Dave

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Re: Accuracy II

Post by mladendomic » Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:26 am

davewalton wrote:
There is one general comment I can make and that's the perception that the Taxi listings are somehow vague while beyond Taxi, things are always more clear. I think many of us can attest to the fact that since the listings are basically provided by the listing company, that's the same information you'd get if you were working with them directly. And in this case you are. They wrote the listing, they provided the person to screen. Taxi is really out of this one, bypassed completely other than them running the listing.
I agree. But in this case, after submitting to a reasonably vague listing, I find out that there was a very specific use for the music for the very specific scene, but they just choose to ask for "ANY STYLE or GENRE" and "J-Pop? Yes. Traditional Japanese Folk Music? Absolutely! Japanese Rap? Why not! They're open to ALL genres and styles of music as long as the music sounds like it's from Japan."
That's NOT "vague". OK. Maybe my english is rusty.
Funky country americana with a little bit of rock :shock:

There was no opportunity to say "Um... that's really vague and there is no such thing. Can you clarify?". I just did my best, another composer and I each listened to each others tracks before submitting and we concluded that either we both did really well or we were both screwed. :lol: We kinda got lucky, the tracks were good enough to be accepted and have been placed several times.

Don't despair... you'll rise to meet the challenge. 8-)
:D
You got lucky. And I'm prepared to a reasonable amount of "lucky" myself. It's just that in case of Taxi I expect more businesslike attitude.
Thank you, Dave, your comments are always meaningful.

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Re: Accuracy II

Post by mladendomic » Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:47 am

Casey H wrote: My suggestion is send an email about this to headscreener _AT_ taxi dot.com... Sometimes posts here don't get read by the appropriate Taxi folks in a timely manner. That's definitely the best way to express these concerns.
I don't want to throw a blame on somebody. I'm just trying to increase my forwarding rate by figuring out what works, how it works and why it works and I feel that more consistent listings would help both sides!

Thank you, Casey!

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Re: Accuracy II

Post by Casey H » Wed Oct 10, 2012 4:14 am

mladendomic wrote:
Casey H wrote: My suggestion is send an email about this to headscreener _AT_ taxi dot.com... Sometimes posts here don't get read by the appropriate Taxi folks in a timely manner. That's definitely the best way to express these concerns.
I don't want to throw a blame on somebody. I'm just trying to increase my forwarding rate by figuring out what works, how it works and why it works and I feel that more consistent listings would help both sides!

Thank you, Casey!
That wouldn't be throwing blame. When you have a genuine concern about listings, screenings, returns, etc, Taxi does appreciate the feedback and is very willing to answer questions... That is, unless you are a complete whiner and write to them about every return.

Best of luck
:D Casey

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Re: Accuracy II

Post by davewalton » Wed Oct 10, 2012 7:54 am

mladendomic wrote: It's just that in case of Taxi I expect more businesslike attitude.
The listing party wrote the listing, the listing party screened the submissions. I'm not sure where Taxi is involved and how they need a more businesslike attitude "in this case". ;) In this case, you are, in every sense of the word, dealing directly with the listing company.

As an aside too, one benefit with the forum is that when we get returns, we can listen to the music of those that got forwarded. That's probably the most enlightening and educational thing we can do. What got through? It really does help to have that perspective for future listings of all kinds. They (the listing companies) won't change. We have to adapt to meet their needs. Others got forwarded so somebody hit the target. If I get returned, the best thing I can do is to try to see what worked. 8-)

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Re: Accuracy II

Post by mazz » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:03 am

You mention the term: "real industry professional contest". Well I can speak from experience that the listing is about as good as it gets and is actually better than many I've seen. Clarification: many I've seen outside of Taxi.

All I can say is that you won't get extremely detailed musical descriptions from clients that aren't musicians and most aren't unless they are publishers who are composers themselves. The best you can hope for are good a las.

Recently a publisher that several of us work for got a request from one of his clients that we have provided music for several of their shows to already. They have lots of shows out there and you would consider them professionals in their field. They requested "redneck music". The publisher asked "oh you mean like the other show that has similar music"? "No, more redneck" was the reply. Well all the composers were now quite confused and the publisher was able to get them to provide 4 or 5 actual examples of what they had in mind. Just a little peek behind the scenes in a "professional" situation.

Get used to it and just keep submitting.

Mazz
Last edited by mazz on Thu Oct 11, 2012 1:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Accuracy II

Post by mladendomic » Wed Oct 10, 2012 12:22 pm

davewalton wrote:
The listing party wrote the listing, the listing party screened the submissions. I'm not sure where Taxi is involved and how they need a more businesslike attitude "in this case". ;) In this case, you are, in every sense of the word, dealing directly with the listing company.
1) It seems I misunderstood the concept of listings. I thought all listings are coming from Taxi and Taxi is always the mediator between the potential purchaser and the compositor (until the 'company' makes contact with you).

2) I didn't mean "in case of this listing". I meant "in case of dealing with Taxi in contrast to dealing with other similar agencies". Excuse my bad english, please.

3) "All submissions will be screened on a YES/NO BASIS by a TAXI screener selected by the music supervisor."
So to me it seems that after all Taxi IS involved - providing a screener for this listing.
As an aside too, one benefit with the forum is that when we get returns, we can listen to the music of those that got forwarded. That's probably the most enlightening and educational thing we can do. What got through? It really does help to have that perspective for future listings of all kinds. They (the listing companies) won't change. We have to adapt to meet their needs. Others got forwarded so somebody hit the target. If I get returned, the best thing I can do is to try to see what worked. 8-)
I can agree with that!
I am only trying to better understand the background of the whole business.

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Re: Accuracy II

Post by TAXIstaff » Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:08 pm

Hi all,
PhilG here.
Mladendomic, I can appreciate your frustration. And I appreciate all you members chiming in. I do moderate the forum, and also am the Head Screener. So like Casey wrote, you can always email me at headscreener _AT_ taxi dot.com.
I usually tend to let the forums have lots of latitude, so this is not a shut down response :-)
I wanted to jump in here though as I read your post, and the concern about the "vagueness" of the listing. Generally, if a scene needs a specific mood or genre, the listings are pretty good about saying so. This listing, by virtue of how the music was to be chosen, was intentionally open to many styles.

The one thing I wanted to note, was that in the listing it stated; Quoting the music supervisor again, “We’re not sure stylistically what will work best to until we see the scene played back with music but we are open to all genres as long as the song contains strong motifs that create an immediate feeling of Japanese cultural history."

The screener, hand picked by the supervisor, was in the same boat. Until the screener saw the scene, no choices could be made. So whether the scene was a battle, or a fishing trip, it wouldn't have mattered as the screener still would've had to have had watched the scene to see if the music fit. The screener, having viewed the scene before screening, was able at that point to decide if a submission "fit" or not.

So while the listing was vague in what they were looking for, it was intentional, because a wide array of music needed be considered.
My intention was to help clarify things up a bit. If I've made it mud, please accept my apologies :-)
Best,
Phil

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