by Kenny Kerner

He is a sound designer for video games as an employee of Lucas Arts, and as such, he did sound design for the best-selling Jedi Knight video game in 1997, yet, one of his dreams came true only through attending the 2000 TAXI Road Rally.

After forming his very first local band at age 14 and playing guitar in a series of high school bands, David Levison moved on to college where he received a bachelor's degree in liberal arts and a batchelor's degree in music.

David's studies in music composition at Cal Arts and his employment with film composer Michael Boddicker combined to put the talented artist on a career track with focus. "I learned a lot from Michael. I was an assistant to him for a few years throughout college. I learned a lot about electronics and recording and sequencing."

Name: David Levison
Residence: San Francisco, CA
Age: 34
Occupation: Sound Designer/Musician
Joined Taxi: 2000
Songs Forwarded: 12
Deals: OneMusic CD deal

Levison's hands-on experience helped land him a job with Lucas Arts as a sound designer. "Sound design is basically sound effects creation. Lucas Arts is the video game division of all the Lucas companies. I also had a couple of my music tracks in the film Groove from Sony Pictures.

Wanting a lifestyle change after college, David left Los Angeles for the Bay area and immediately formed a partnership with a friend and opened their own studio trying to get to do audio production for multi media. "Quite by accident I happened to find out about an opportunity to do sound design for a game company and it sounded kinda interesting so I went for it. I did some sound synthesis and sound design work at Cal Arts so I had some experience. Also, I had a lot of recording experience from all the years of being in bands. I had the audio background but not the game experience."

This very interesting scenario begs the question--why join TAXI? You've got two college degrees, a job at George Lucas video game company, music in one of their best-selling videos . . . so who needs help?

"Throughout my entire musical life the first dream I had was to make records and make money selling records. I've always had my own studio and was always developing my own material. So I've always been pursuing a label deal simultaneously. That was a good reason to get involved with TAXI. The music I create for games is a great job but it's not really the dream!"

David categorizes his relationship with TAXI as "encouraging" though he's had over a dozen songs forwarded. However, last winter, while attending the annual Road Rally 2000, his fortunes changed from encouragement to reality:

"I was at the Rally and went to the music library panel where they chose my CD and played the track 'Eye Spy.' When it was over, it got applause from the audience, which was pretty cool. Jim Long, the president of OneMusic was on the panel and he got excited about it immediately. After the panel we talked and he thought it was something special. The deal is that they gave me an advance to produce a full CD of beds, bumpers and stingers. These are terms they use in the music library business. Beds are thirty-second music segments, bumpers, which are 10-15 seconds and stingers, which are about five seconds each. I wrote, produced and recorded the entire CD which they've already released. It's called Design Electronica."

Producers can get in touch with OneMusic and ask for David's CD. And all because he attended the Road Rally. "There's been some really good opportunities because of TAXI and of course, the OneMusic deal happened because of them. So it's been pretty cool."

Many people tend to forget the plethora of opportunities made available through a membership with TAXI. While most concentrate on the song listings, never forget that during one weekend in November, at the annual TAXI Road Rally, you have the chance of a lifetime to mingle with the very people you're trying to reach with your music. And it's all free.

While David Levison waits to hear about his many forwarded songs, he can begin collecting royalties on a CD that came to be through a door opened byTAXI.


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"Thanks to TAXI, we are at this point in our development years in advance of where we would be if we had done it alone."
— John & Larry,
TAXI Members

"TAXI's Road Rally was the most exciting music business event I've ever experienced. All the questions troubling me about songwriting and how to get my songs promoted better got answered!"
— Miriam Duncombe,
TAXI Member