2012 Taxi Road Rally Wrap Up and Thoughts
I returned home from the 2012 Taxi Road Rally today tired but satisfied and invigorated. It is always a pleasure to be able to spend quality time with close friends that I have met over the years at the previous Road Rallys and be able to connect in person with people I have become acquainted with via the Taxi Forum, Facebook, etc.
Over the years, my experience of the Rally has evolved and has become largely about the “hang” aspect, which has become a huge component in my success and even more importantly the deepening of friendships that in some cases are evolving into lifelong relationships!
I also attended some excellent panels in the main ballroom including Ralph Murphy’s always entertaining songwriting presentation, the game and trailer panel, the library listening panel and of course, the opening panel was very inspiring. It was an emotional experience watching the Skype interview with John Braheny after the award was presented to Diane Warren, who was ill and was under doctors orders to refrain from speaking. John Braheny has been a large part of the success of so many songwriters including luminaries such as Diane Warren and I wish him a speedy recovery! I met him at several Rallys and even hired him to review my demo one year, he is a true guru and great friend of writers of all kinds. Sending you light, John!
One of the biggest highlights of the Rally for me was listening to my friends speak of their success and to hear how they are going about achieving that success. Some of these folks I have met 4 or 5 or more years ago, some not so long ago, but to a “T” every one of them was saying essentially the same things:
- Hard work and dedication are required
- They do something towards furthering their career every day
- They all said that a component to their success came from being a pro, and being easy to work with. They are all great people who understand that it’s a service business.
- They continue to work on their craft, and are constantly learning and improving their musical chops
- They continue to learn about the business, and are constantly learning and improving their business chops
- They treat it like a job, they “go to work” every day. They understand that the music won’t come to someone who hasn’t prepared for it, and they also know that waiting around for the muse to strike just keeps them from being creative and productive.
- They deal with feedback in a non-emotional manner and learn from it.
- They completely understand that networking is essential to their success. Every one of them are excellent networkers, and many didn’t start out that way!
- They learned to develop patience and humility. Every one of my friends is so thankful to be able to write music and make money from that, and they also know that it’s a long term game and have nurtured that quality of patient persistence.
It is amazing to see how these folks have grown and continue to grow from the first time I met them. They are all very success oriented and “get it” when it comes to being a professional composer/writer. They take the long view. These folks range from people on the “low end” of the royalty stream to people making six figure incomes from their royalties. The fact that we can all hang out together and learn from each other is a testament to how much love and respect we all have for each other. There is no hierarchy, the more successful folks (financially) have a distinct memory of when they weren’t earning what they are today and are more than willing to share their knowledge with those of us who aren’t quite there yet.
I can’t end without a huge shout-out to Michael Laskow and his amazing staff. This is a massive undertaking that they put on each year and it really is an amazing event. I can’t imagine what goes on behind the scenes to put on the Road Rally, but I want to state right now that I do not take any of it for granted. The Rally and Taxi have changed my life and for that I am forever grateful.
Until next year: Do something towards your music career every day. Treat it with the respect and devotion that it deserves. Be persistent, willing to learn. Be easy on yourself when you get frustrated or depressed, reach out to your compadres on the journey, because they might need you when they get down (and they will!!!). Cultivate balance in your life, get rest, take breaks, have fun outside of the studio every once in a while!
See you next year!!
Love and Blessings,