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Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 4:33 pm
by ComposerLDG
Hi, all. Struck out on this one, but the critique is puzzling me, so I'd like some objective feedback. I'm NOT dissing the screener in any way, shape, or form (have I heard that phrase before? :-)). I'm sure he or she is hearing something that didn't fit. Because I want to continually improve at this, I just want some help identifying what it was. Here's the song:



Here are the screener's comments: "Has most of the obviously x-mas instrumental and arrangement elements, however, percussion in particular, as well as piano, sound more in demo format than something that could be pitched and ready for broadcast. Would try and update those samples sounds to get closer to a more contemporary sounding synch mode."

What's throwing me is that I've never been dinged on the piano or percussion samples before, so is it the recording/production that's off and/or making it sound demo or not contemporary? I'd appreciate the feedback so I can correct whatever it is and avoid it happening again.

Thanks!

Here's the listing:

ORIGINAL CHRISTMAS INSTRUMENTALS in All Styles are needed by a successful Music Licensing Company with tons of placements in HIT TV Shows!

NOTE: They're interested in hearing Instrumentals in a variety of genres, styles and tempos, ranging from (but not limited to) Hip-Hop, EDM, Singer/Songwriter, Dance, Soul, Pop, Rock, Orchestral etc., etc., etc. Please listen to the references below to get in the general range of what they need:

“Santa Tell Me” by Ariana Grande

“Underneath the Tree” by Kelly Clarkson

“Christmas In Hollis” by RUN-DMC

“All I Want For Christmas Is You” by Mariah Carey

Although the references above have vocals, this pitch is for instrumentals only.

Please send in ORIGINAL Christmas Instrumentals (not covers) with top-notch production and Instrumentation such as sleigh bells, hand bells, chimes, etc. Your Instrumentals can range from simple arrangements to bigger and more fully developed productions depending on the genre and style you choose.

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 5:47 pm
by cassmcentee
Great tune Loren!
Happy Jazzy Christmas

Only once did the drums sound out of place to me (after 1:20 somewhere during a solo) midi-ness vs Real at that spot.
But it was so minor of a distraction that John Q Public would never catch it...
My guess is that the reverb took me to an older Jazz vibe vs the Glock feeling upfront and cleaner
Screener probably felt that as well, I had to look at the listing 3 times to see if Jazzy was listed...
Lol, they asked for all genres... now I'm guessing the screener heard something great just before listening to yours and passed
Dunno
Killer playing BTW

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 6:03 pm
by ComposerLDG
Hi Cass,

Thanks for the input! You bring up an interesting point about the glock. During mixing I cleaned it up quite a bit so it would project. Now I'm wondering if it sounds out of place bright and clean while the rest of it is kind of a jazzy vintage vibe that's got more reverb. Something to think about. Thanks for the feedback!

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:59 pm
by lesmac
Hi Loren,
I listened to the first two refs then to your track before reading the screeners comments. I thought the drums sounded quiet/far back and the bass sounded jazzy. The piano seemed a little "continuous".
The percussion sounded light through the laptop speakers but the low end of the drums and bass came through on headphones.

The 2 reference tracks I listened to had a bit of kick to them -modern take with traditional instruments.

Now- I wish I could compose and play like you :lol: .

My take from the peanut gallery. :)

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:13 pm
by MathieuF
Hi Loren

I also got my songs returned for that listing, and pretty much for the same reasons ! "Broadcast quality not met"...which is also puzzling me a lot since I've never got that comment before and even when I submited these two same tracks to taxi...

I've listened to your track and although I could MAYBE see why you got these comments about the piano and drums... really it just seems to me like that screener was REALLY strict about the sound/production quality...frustrating to say the least...

If you're curious, here's one of the songs I submited : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s5l53G8TR6A

Now I completely agree that it's NOT really Christmas-y...that's not the point...but I don't understand why the screener would say it wasn't sounding great enough...it was mixed and mastered by Antoine Dufour and his productions are always top-notch, world class sounds ! I am confused...

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:53 am
by ComposerLDG
lesmac wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:59 pm
Hi Loren,
I listened to the first two refs then to your track before reading the screeners comments. I thought the drums sounded quiet/far back and the bass sounded jazzy. The piano seemed a little "continuous".
The percussion sounded light through the laptop speakers but the low end of the drums and bass came through on headphones.

The 2 reference tracks I listened to had a bit of kick to them -modern take with traditional instruments.

Now- I wish I could compose and play like you :lol: .

My take from the peanut gallery. :)
Thanks, Les! Yeah, the drums are more of a "classic rock" sound rather than the tighter, punchier contemporary snare. That could have had a lot to do with it, I guess. They said all styles, but maybe they were looking for a more modern feel overall.

Thanks for listening and for the help!

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:56 am
by ComposerLDG
MathieuF wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:13 pm
Hi Loren

I also got my songs returned for that listing, and pretty much for the same reasons ! "Broadcast quality not met"...which is also puzzling me a lot since I've never got that comment before and even when I submited these two same tracks to taxi...

I've listened to your track and although I could MAYBE see why you got these comments about the piano and drums... really it just seems to me like that screener was REALLY strict about the sound/production quality...frustrating to say the least...

If you're curious, here's one of the songs I submited : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s5l53G8TR6A

Now I completely agree that it's NOT really Christmas-y...that's not the point...but I don't understand why the screener would say it wasn't sounding great enough...it was mixed and mastered by Antoine Dufour and his productions are always top-notch, world class sounds ! I am confused...
Hi Mathieu,

Thanks for the input! I'm listening to yours right now. Nice warm track! I actually could hear this in an endearing scene for a family Christmas movie or show. The "broadcast quality not met" comment is throwing me too; I think it sounds fine. Maybe this was just a very high bar listing. Nice work and nice playing!

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:36 am
by CTWF
ComposerLDG wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 6:03 pm
Now I'm wondering if it sounds out of place bright and clean while the rest of it is kind of a jazzy vintage vibe that's got more reverb.
I listened to it with crappy earphones, but I think that could have been an issue. On the other hand, that is not specifically what your screener wrote...

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:21 am
by ttully
Hi Loren,

You have a nice track....
But here is the problem:
Would try and update those samples sounds to get closer to a more contemporary sounding synch mode
All the examples are using modern sounding drums...yours sound like the 1960's.
Of course...if they were looking for authentic old limey Christmas tracks.... this would probably be a forward.
But if the examples have Ariana Grande in them...they NEED to be cutting edge modern.

My 3 cents,
Tim

Re: Original Christmas return - feedback, please?

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:30 pm
by MBantle
ComposerLDG wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 4:33 pm
Hi, all. Struck out on this one, but the critique is puzzling me, so I'd like some objective feedback. I'm NOT dissing the screener in any way, shape, or form (have I heard that phrase before? :-)). I'm sure he or she is hearing something that didn't fit. Because I want to continually improve at this, I just want some help identifying what it was. Here's the song:



Here are the screener's comments: "Has most of the obviously x-mas instrumental and arrangement elements, however, percussion in particular, as well as piano, sound more in demo format than something that could be pitched and ready for broadcast. Would try and update those samples sounds to get closer to a more contemporary sounding synch mode."

What's throwing me is that I've never been dinged on the piano or percussion samples before, so is it the recording/production that's off and/or making it sound demo or not contemporary? I'd appreciate the feedback so I can correct whatever it is and avoid it happening again.

Thanks!

Here's the listing:

ORIGINAL CHRISTMAS INSTRUMENTALS in All Styles are needed by a successful Music Licensing Company with tons of placements in HIT TV Shows!

NOTE: They're interested in hearing Instrumentals in a variety of genres, styles and tempos, ranging from (but not limited to) Hip-Hop, EDM, Singer/Songwriter, Dance, Soul, Pop, Rock, Orchestral etc., etc., etc. Please listen to the references below to get in the general range of what they need:

“Santa Tell Me” by Ariana Grande

“Underneath the Tree” by Kelly Clarkson

“Christmas In Hollis” by RUN-DMC

“All I Want For Christmas Is You” by Mariah Carey

Although the references above have vocals, this pitch is for instrumentals only.

Please send in ORIGINAL Christmas Instrumentals (not covers) with top-notch production and Instrumentation such as sleigh bells, hand bells, chimes, etc. Your Instrumentals can range from simple arrangements to bigger and more fully developed productions depending on the genre and style you choose.
I think the track is great! To be honest they probably did not like the 'percussion' because at least on my Sennheisers HD 650 the Glockenspiel (or whatever you used) is a bit too upfront...Dialing that down might do the trick. The piano seems fine (I guess they simply did not like your EQ choices) but as you know it is always worthwhile playing around with different piano VIs to find the winner for that particular track...Just my five cents... Cheers, Matt