Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

A cozy place to hang out and discuss all things music.

Moderators: admin, mdc, TAXIstaff

Post Reply
jchitty
Serious Musician
Serious Musician
Posts: 4266
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2009 5:20 pm
Contact:

Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by jchitty » Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:16 am

Hi, folks....I just got back from the panel meeting in Nashville. I plan to renew my membership come July 3rd. This Nashville panel meeting was a TRUE eye opener, and a great educational experience for me. I'm not really a complainer when it comes to fowards. I learned a long time ago that it's difficult to get a cut in Nashville, although not impossible if you write a great song that grabs people's attention. But I did learn a few more things that I didn't know by attending this meeting. Later on, I will tell you why I think country songwriters should stay with TAXI, but first I'd like to say what I learned at this meeting. I'm going strictly by memory as I didn't take notes, so feel free to correct me if I'm wrong. 1. I learned there are over 20,000 country songwriters in Nashville. That was a conservative estimate by the panel, I believe. There are probably more, so the competition is very fierce. After the panel meeting, I sat with one person (some of the songwriters went for dinner afterwards) and they said there may be as many 45,000 songwriters in Nashville.2. Michael and the panel played hit songs so that we could hear the difference between the hit songs and ours. And there was a BIG difference. These songs grabbed you immediately, tugged at your emotions, were very well crafted, and used a lot of clever conversational lyrics. THEY STOOD OUT from the pack. One of them was a Rascal Flatts song, the other a Pat Green song....but they were definitely A plus songs. So a B plus song just isn't good enough. Not that our songs aren't really good, they are....we just might have to go a little further. 3. I learned that women listeners (according to Ralph Murphy) are the ones you have to please at 7 AM in the morning, and you have to grab their attention for the first 45 seconds, or you haven't done your job as a songwriter.4. For me personally, I learned that I need to get away from those poetic lyrics I tend to write and lean more toward the conversational. (when writing country) I think Michael put his arse on the line to play my song for the panel. It was my best one, but I knew it wasn't what they were looking for, but I'm still honored it got critiqued...that meant a lot to me. 5. And here's the BIGGEST THING I learned....that TAXI really is trying to help country songwriters. But they can't perform miracles. They (and the screeners) have to give Nashville what it wants. So by us regularly writing and submitting to TAXI's listings, we become more skilled at knowing what Nashville wants too....we're not flying blind. Think about this, if you DIDN'T have TAXI's screeners helping you to become a better writer, what would you have? NOTHING. You'd be pitching to listings without any concept of what Nashville really needs. I also noticed that the panel said the VERY SAME things about my song, "Silence Is the Best Thing I've Ever Heard" as the screeners did. So when people get upset at the screeners, don't see them as gatekeepers. See them as people who are trying to help YOU, but also as people who ultimately have to deliver the goods that Nashville is requesting of them. They can't send just a b-plus song....it's gotta be beyond the best, and it has to be exactly what the artist is looking for. The reason I think country songwriters should join TAXI is that like me, most of you don't have a direct pulse on Nashville. It would be ideal if we could all live there, but of course, we don't. When Michael put together this panel, that gave the country songwriters even more of a feel for what's going on. Now we know why it's so hard to get a foward or a cut, but as a TAXI member, I feel I can at least keep up with trends in Nashville, get a feel for what a country artist wants and keep improving my craft in the process.I'd like to thank Michael for allowing this panel meeting to happen....I think it went extremely well, and I really enjoyed it. Michael let us in on the world of country songwriting, and in the process, it's helped us all greatly. And finally, even though I don't name y'all, I really loved meeting all my fellow TAXI members.....I had the best time! BTW, I'm very tired from traveling, so I'll e-mail and PM folks later.

User avatar
cameron
Serious Musician
Serious Musician
Posts: 2292
Joined: Tue May 13, 2008 6:14 pm
Gender: Male
Location: Sedona, Arizona
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by cameron » Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:23 am

I guess it would be in bad taste to say that for years I've already been grabbing my woman at 7 a.m. for the first 45 seconds. Cam

jchitty
Serious Musician
Serious Musician
Posts: 4266
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2009 5:20 pm
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by jchitty » Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:24 am

Jun 9, 2009, 12:23pm, cameron wrote:I guess it would be in bad taste to say that for years I've already been grabbing my woman at 7 a.m. for the first 45 seconds. CamLOL, Cam....btw, I really enjoyed meeting you at the meeting!

User avatar
mazz
Total Pro
Total Pro
Posts: 8411
Joined: Sat Nov 11, 2006 6:51 am
Gender: Male
Location: San Francisco
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by mazz » Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:30 am

Jun 9, 2009, 12:23pm, cameron wrote:I guess it would be in bad taste to say that for years I've already been grabbing my woman at 7 a.m. for the first 45 seconds. CamImpressive!! Very well put Chits!! Congrats on getting your song played and big kudos for making it to the meeting. I know it was a challenge and it seems to me you gave yourself a great gift by making the pilgrimage.Great to hear about this from those that were there. Good stuff!!Mazz
Evocative Music For Media

imagine if John Williams and Trent Reznor met at Bernard Hermann's for lunch and Brian Eno was the head chef!
http://www.johnmazzei.com
http://www.taxi.com/johnmazzei

it's not the gear, it's the ear!

jchitty
Serious Musician
Serious Musician
Posts: 4266
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2009 5:20 pm
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by jchitty » Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:32 am

Jun 9, 2009, 12:30pm, mazz wrote:Jun 9, 2009, 12:23pm, cameron wrote:I guess it would be in bad taste to say that for years I've already been grabbing my woman at 7 a.m. for the first 45 seconds. CamImpressive!! Very well put Chits!! Congrats on getting your song played and big kudos for making it to the meeting. I know it was a challenge and it seems to me you gave yourself a great gift by making the pilgrimage.Great to hear about this from those that were there. Good stuff!!MazzThanks, Mazz. I guess the next stop should be the L. A. Rally.

User avatar
cameron
Serious Musician
Serious Musician
Posts: 2292
Joined: Tue May 13, 2008 6:14 pm
Gender: Male
Location: Sedona, Arizona
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by cameron » Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:51 am

Definitely we all have room to grow as songwriters. I'm already embarrassed by the songs I wrote less than a year ago, and hopefully a year from now I'll feel the same way about the stuff I wrote today. It's like anything else.... practice, practice, practice.One point that I've come to realize from this and other panels is that Nashville has all the really good album cut songs it needs. They need HITS. That's one reason that most of our songs ML played have never been forwarded, even though they were mostly good enough to be album cuts imho. When they need album cuts they have to go no farther than their own catalog, or call up their songwriter golfing buddy. Albums no longer sell anyway.Cam

jchitty
Serious Musician
Serious Musician
Posts: 4266
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2009 5:20 pm
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by jchitty » Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:59 am

Jun 9, 2009, 12:51pm, cameron wrote:Definitely we all have room to grow as songwriters. I'm already embarrassed by the songs I wrote less than a year ago, and hopefully a year from now I'll feel the same way about the stuff I wrote today. It's like anything else.... practice, practice, practice.One point that I've come to realize from this and other panels is that Nashville has all the really good album cut songs it needs. They need HITS. That's one reason that most of our songs ML played have never been forwarded, even though they were mostly good enough to be album cuts imho. When they need album cuts they have to go no farther than their own catalog, or call up their songwriter golfing buddy. Albums no longer sell anyway.CamCam, I still think you have tremendous talent and potential....I wished they would have played, "Rather Be Lucky Than Good." I love "Same Shirt," but I'm telling ya, one day, "Lucky" is gonna find a home. Even though you think it's about a loser...hey, I'm tired of the fluff, bring that song on.

User avatar
Casey H
King of the World
King of the World
Posts: 12290
Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2004 3:22 pm
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by Casey H » Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:11 am

Jun 9, 2009, 12:23pm, cameron wrote:I guess it would be in bad taste to say that for years I've already been grabbing my woman at 7 a.m. for the first 45 seconds. CamAs Ted said, I know ZERO about country music... But I wouldn't mind doing some research into this "how to grab women at 7:00 AM thing"... Purely altruistic so I can give better advice, of course. (Sorry Sue... just kidding... REALLY... kidding... OK, I'll sleep in the shed tonight)...

jchitty
Serious Musician
Serious Musician
Posts: 4266
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2009 5:20 pm
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by jchitty » Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:20 am

Jun 9, 2009, 1:11pm, hurowitz wrote:Jun 9, 2009, 12:23pm, cameron wrote:I guess it would be in bad taste to say that for years I've already been grabbing my woman at 7 a.m. for the first 45 seconds. CamAs Ted said, I know ZERO about country music... But I wouldn't mind doing some research into this "how to grab women at 7:00 AM thing"... Purely altruistic so I can give better advice, of course. (Sorry Sue... just kidding... REALLY... kidding... OK, I'll sleep in the shed tonight)... Sue would be proud...I just editing my wording to say, 'grab their attention' instead of 'grab them.'

jwebbinspired
Committed Musician
Committed Musician
Posts: 743
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2008 3:03 pm
Gender: Male
Location: Gallipolis, Ohio
Contact:

Re: Why Country Songwriters Should join TAXI

Post by jwebbinspired » Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:26 am

This might come across as cocky, but it's not meant to be. It's confidence and kind of an epiphany that I feel closer than I thought I was to the "high bar" level of writing...of course even if you get to the "bar" it's still a numbers game. But after hearing the songs that the panel played last night I actually feel better about what I'm writing right now. It's amazing to me how far I've come. And I definitely credit TAXI for putting me in my place to get where I am. Obviously it hasn't single-handedly been TAXI, but they have certainly played a major role in my growth as a songwriter. A huge part of that has been this forum. Thanks guys. And I still have my old songs on my computer so I can see where I came from, it's inspiring in and of itself.Thanks Michael for putting that together. They must be good friends of yours because I could tell it wasn't where they wanted to be...answering questions from a bunch songwriters can't be too high on their favorite list.Andy

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest