Return after Return...

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bobpepek
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Return after Return...

Post by bobpepek » Fri Sep 11, 2009 8:20 am

Hi everyone, My name is Bob Pepek, I'm a singer/songwriter from CT. Like anyone else, I live paycheck to paycheck, work a 40 hour a week job, and am doing everything I can to push my music, that I believe so much in. With such faith in my music, I turned to Taxi. I know signing up for Taxi was not going to guarantee me a signed contract, nor was it a guarantee that it would open any new doors for me. However, I've been getting a bit discouraged lately with the constant returns. I understand that these A&R reps aren't willing to risk their 6-figure incomes on "chance", I get it. But I really feel they are being a little TOO selective. Now please dont pick me for being "bitter" or "uptight" for not being forwarded, I'm just concerned, however (as a hypothetical example), these screeners ask for something similar to Coldplay, now I believe my music shares a similar "style", however its not close enough to target. Am I needed to develop a british accent, and match up vocal pitch and tones to be considered? On top of that, the Dispatch opportunities are few and far between (at no fault of Taxi's, but dont sync up with my style for consideration). On the monitary side, like I said, I live paycheck to paycheck, so paying the yearly fee was a dip into the wallet, then I signed up for Taxi Dispatch, and I now have 12 consecutive returns under my belt(@ $5 a submission... [$60]). Thats a near $600 as of right now, and I'm only 2 months into this membership, its a bit discouraging. The 5 songs I have uploaded were all professionally recorded at a very well known studio, every returned critique has emphasized that. Every song is a track of my EP that I just released this past January. Just about every critique I've had has mentioned how I have good hooks and good marketability, etc... If all this is so, why am I getting return after return? I'm batting .000 right now, 0 for 12. Can anyone instill faith in me that there's light at the end of the tunnel, and not just an empty wallet?? Thank you so much, and I hope to hear from you all. If any of you have the free moment, I'd like to hear what some people have to think of my music. Sincerely,Bob Pepek');// -->gotmuddzr2@yahoo.comhttp://www.myspace.com/bobpepek

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Re: Return after Return...

Post by slideboardouts » Fri Sep 11, 2009 9:22 am

Hey Bob,It would help if you could post a couple of the listings that you submitted to as well as the critiques. It may just be a targeting issue. Personally, I wouldn't be submitting to "a la Coldplay" type listings if I was you because I think your sound is much more "pop" than Coldplay. If you have been submitting to a lot of listings asking for Coldplay type songs or artists, then I am not at all surprised that you have been getting a lot of returns. I find your style more interesting than Coldplay's, however, if I was a screener reviewing material for a "Coldplay listing" I would give you compliments on your music/marketability along with a big fat "Return" (just what you have said has been happening). There are definitely some good qualities to your music, but it doesn't sound enough like Coldplay for a listing asking for Coldplay type music. Again, its hard to tell without seeing the listings and the critiques, but from what you've shared and from listening to your music I think it is mostly a targeting problem.-Steve

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Re: Return after Return...

Post by bobpepek » Fri Sep 11, 2009 9:29 am

Thank you Steve, I will post some of my critiques as soon as I get home from work, as I am chewing up company internet time as we speak haha. I only used the Coldplay listing as an example. I've sent many submissions to many listings... (12 to be exact). Thank you very much for taking the time to listen to my music and your kind words! I really do appreciate it! You've been a lot of help.

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Re: Return after Return...

Post by Casey H » Fri Sep 11, 2009 9:46 am

Hi BobI really enjoyed your music. Good stuff! I think Steve hit it on the head-- it's about targeting. A lot of times, new members tend to over-submit- a bit of shotgunning. If you chose your submissions more carefully, avoiding where your music is too far from the a la's, your forward ratio will be much better. (I know-- can't get worse, LOL)... It's not a reflection on the quality of your music.Often, film/TV music libraries will run listings looking for a wider selection of styles. You may want to keep an eye out for those. I agree with Steve that your music leans a little more pop or singer-songwriter.Best of luck! Casey

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Re: Return after Return...

Post by hummingbird » Fri Sep 11, 2009 10:51 am

just a suggestion - before you make any more submissions, plan to post in Peer to Peer... include the text of the listing, and a link to your song(s) and lyric(s). Ask us if we think you are on target.
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Re: Return after Return...

Post by bobpepek » Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:30 am

First off, I want to start by thanking all of you for all your help so far! It's good to see so much support! My wallet and I appreciate it! haha Anyways, heres one listing that was returned as "on target"... Listing:S090731ACHOT ADULT CONTEMPORARY POP SONGS are sought by the Producers of a new young artist in her early twenties. They have given Alicia Keys' "Fallin", Sara Barielles' "Gravity" and Erykah Badu's acoustic pop side as stylistic references for you to go by. They want to hear songs with positive and uplifting messages but ask that you avoid anything too preachy or cheesy sounding. Most importantly, the songs should have a commercial, pop feel with well-crafted, cohesive lyrics that also have a strong emotional impact. Critique: For "A Little More"Good AC pop melodic ideas overall. Good chorus contrast. The lyric sentiment here is good. You don't show what the the couple is now, so when you say " a little more" it's unclear what that's referring to. Also, the line "just what this world has got for we", could be more cohesive. Try to use more conversational language. You wouldn't say that line in a conversation.My thoughts... I don't portray where the couple is "NOW" because I can't predict the future. I wrote the song many years ago, and had no intentions of re-writing the song. "A Little More" is my interpretation of being a little closer towards perfection. As for my sentence structure, "Lets go, Lets see, just what this world has got for we..." sounds a lot more pleasing than "just what this world has got for US", which would stick out like a fart in church.This is only one listing for now, I have things to finish up around the house, but will list more examples a little later.Thank you again,Bob

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Re: Return after Return...

Post by k o star » Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:38 am

hi Bob... What Vikki mentioned, so true... P2P is the best place to get as close to Ur target as possible...I really enjoy Ur tracks... Production is very good to my ears too...I just get the feeling that Ur getting returns not becos of Ur works but only becos of being off-target...I think for U, it's just a matter of time if U keep persisting there's no reason why U won't make it... IMHOUse P2P... the Peers here are the Kindest, Generous-est Fantastic Ppl ever!!!-Kel
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Re: Return after Return...

Post by k o star » Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:39 am

Sorry... I was posting my last msg when U posted first... so this was before I read Ur last post...
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Re: Return after Return...

Post by slideboardouts » Fri Sep 11, 2009 12:52 pm

Sept 11, 2009, 2:30pm, bobpepek wrote:First off, I want to start by thanking all of you for all your help so far! It's good to see so much support! My wallet and I appreciate it! haha Anyways, heres one listing that was returned as "on target"... Listing:S090731ACHOT ADULT CONTEMPORARY POP SONGS are sought by the Producers of a new young artist in her early twenties. They have given Alicia Keys' "Fallin", Sara Barielles' "Gravity" and Erykah Badu's acoustic pop side as stylistic references for you to go by. They want to hear songs with positive and uplifting messages but ask that you avoid anything too preachy or cheesy sounding. Most importantly, the songs should have a commercial, pop feel with well-crafted, cohesive lyrics that also have a strong emotional impact. Critique: For "A Little More"Good AC pop melodic ideas overall. Good chorus contrast. The lyric sentiment here is good. You don't show what the the couple is now, so when you say " a little more" it's unclear what that's referring to. Also, the line "just what this world has got for we", could be more cohesive. Try to use more conversational language. You wouldn't say that line in a conversation.My thoughts... I don't portray where the couple is "NOW" because I can't predict the future. I wrote the song many years ago, and had no intentions of re-writing the song. "A Little More" is my interpretation of being a little closer towards perfection. As for my sentence structure, "Lets go, Lets see, just what this world has got for we..." sounds a lot more pleasing than "just what this world has got for US", which would stick out like a fart in church.This is only one listing for now, I have things to finish up around the house, but will list more examples a little later.Thank you again,BobUnfortunately, right from the get go you are behind the 8 ball on this listing. The artist is a female, and all of the referenced songs showcase a female vocalist. You are a male vocalist, and from everything that I've heard from screeners and industry veterans the general rule of thumb is: "If you are pitching to a female artist, use a female vocalist. If you are pitching to a male artist, use a male vocalist." Now, I don't think that the gender of the singer is a total deal killer right off the bat, but you aren't doing yourself any favors by pitching a song with male vocals to a female vocalist. Also, even though I would definitely consider your song in the AC pop genre, I don't know if it is quite a fit with the a la's mentioned. All of the a la's have a little more of an urban vibe to them than your song, with the exception of Sarah Bareilles. So 2 out of 3 have an Urban vibe to them which would lead me to believe that they are looking for a pop song that has a little bit of urban flair to it. Your sound clearly sits on the straight pop side of the fence IMO, with some definite similarities to Sarah Bareilles but remember that 2 of the 3 artists mentioned have urban music roots.Lyrics really aren't my thing so I'm afraid I can't comment much on that, although I can see where the screener is coming from with the line "Lets go, Lets see, just what this world has got for we." I see what you're saying too, "us" doesn't work that great either. However, I probably would have re-written this line in some way... using "we" the way you did could definitely come off as a little out of place and confusing to the listener.One last thing is to keep in mind that ANY listing that is for an artist is going to be a high bar listing. The screeners are going to be very picky on listings like this.HTH-Steve

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Re: Return after Return...

Post by watksco » Fri Sep 11, 2009 5:57 pm

Hey Bob,Don't get discouraged - use the critiques as a learning experience - listen to what they say and develop your craft (they may be the first real and totally honest - i.e. non family/friend etc - critiques your music has recieved). That's how it was for me anyway - and it came as a bit of a shock - but as a result I am a much better writer IMO. Re-writing is a PITA (especially lyrics - ouch), but, as Jason Blume says (or someone like that) - "your song could be one re-wrtite away from perfection".HTHCheers,Scott
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