Friday, December 14, 2012

Why your GREAT song didn't get forwarded

'If my song is great, TAXI will forward it.' This has to be one of the biggest misconceptions about TAXI.

Many writers and producers know their song isn't right on for the listing, but they believe the greatness of their song will compensate for the differences in the request.

That is absolutely, 100%, unequivocally WRONG.

That mindset is detrimental to your progress, and it is frustrating for the TAXI staff.

Imagine this scenario:

Lets say you are a general contractor building a home. You've laid the foundation and now it's time for the walls to be constructed. You've got all the 2x4's and 2x6's laid out and ready to go. All you need is the right tool - the nail gun.

So you let your associates know you need the nailer, and they all go running in search of it. Some of them dig through their old tool boxes and find some hammers. Some just grab the first tool they see. Some pick up rocks and know that will work to pound in nails. Some even go to the store intending to get a new nailer, but get side-tracked by the updated and glitzy dremmel and bring that instead.

Then they all bring you their stuff. You start looking at it. You see how some of the people thought the hammer would work. It could, it's just outdated. You know those who just grabbed the first tool they saw did so in haste. The rocks baffle you, but I guess at one time it worked. But the that's curious.

You concede it's a great tool. It could work in so many applications. It's actually the right tool for so many OTHER applications. But just not this one. Not to construct walls. Not for your request.

That's what sending in songs to TAXI is like.

Some material is outdated, some is sent in haste ("shotgunned"), some are rocks, and some are dremmels. And no matter how GREAT your dremmel is, if it's not right for the request, it cannot be used for the job at hand!

When the TAXI listing says, "Uptempo, contemporary URBAN POP songs ala Usher, Chris Brown..." please do not send them a country ballad that sounds like it was recorded in '92. It's just not getting forwarded. Period.

And that makes some people angry. Very angry. But who's fault is it? Really? (Not TAXI's)

Remember, TAXI's bar is high. Very high. They're not going to forward material just to keep a member happy. Or to keep stringing them along. TAXI has no interest in collecting your money without helping you to make money in the music industry.

TAXI wants us to succeed. That's why they have the forums. And the critiques. And TAXI TV. And the Rally. And so much more.

So your song can be great. But if it's not the right fit, they can't forward it. It might be the production, performance, lyric, melody, style, arrangement, vibe, theme, hook, rhyming pattern, form, instrumentation, or more.

That's why it's crucial to read the listings carefully. Write your songs strategically. And submit them purposefully.

Then you will enjoy getting forwards and soon after, signing deals.

You can do it, so get to work!

I don't work for TAXI, but TAXI works for me!

1 comment:

  1. Hi James. I first was "introduced" to you on the interview you did with Michael on Taxi TV on January 21st. I read your blogs and feel very inspired and motivated by what you shared. I joined Taxi about 11 months ago very passively. I'd look at the listings, think about them, etc. Every once in a while I'd submit a song from a CD I did in 2007 that I thought fit. I planned on attending the Road Rally in November and was unable to make it because of work conflicts. The long and short of it is that my job ended at the end of the year and I found myself in one of those career crossroads - which way do I go? I decided to make Taxi and my songwriting career a full-time job. Thanks to your blog and interview, Robin's, Jason's, and John's books, the forums (I'm actively on there daily now!), other members and Michael's overall guidance and spirit I feel like I'm starting to make some sense of the listings, what I need to work on, and am learning something every day. I've received some returns (they do hurt), but I understand and appreciate the criticism. I'm working hard daily (harder than I worked at my other job in years!) and am very excited about getting out of bed every day. I joined Taxi in March 2012, and was a 'member'. I think we need a new term to distinguish what I was from what I am striving to be...I don't have the term, but it is about being an 'active member'. Thank you for sharing your experience. I hope you continue this blog. Best of luck to you and I look forward to meeting you at the Road Rally in 2013.

    Christine Cochrane


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