Dear Michael, Michael, & Doug:
You did it again. And it was, once again, even better than ever (I
get to say this, as a proud member of the Six-for-Six club). I had pretty
big concerns that the extra day would spread the thing out not only in
time and space, but would also somehow dilute the vibe and energy. How
could I be so wrong? If anything, the atmosphere of the world's finest
music biz lovefest was even more sizzling than last year. The panels were
terrific, Steve Seskin was brilliant, talent at the open mics deep and
beautiful, the mentoring a groove.
seems to be saying, "Hey, it's not all work, and no play at the Road
But the thing I came away with most was the outlandish support two
thousand music makers give each other for three delirious days, without
the usual ugly competitiveness. The goodwill was palpable. And I'm convinced
this goodwill comes from the high road you three and all the TAXI staff
exude all year long, focused like a mo'fo for those three and a half days.
Closing with the screener's band -- what an idea! Talk about a grand
finale. Remember it when some joker gives you grief about screeners' inadequacies.
That final hour of live playing dispelled my exhaustion and kept me cranked
until 5:00 a.m., when I had to get my ass to the plane.
And then there's the good judgment issue. You three blokes show some
of the best judgment I've ever seen, on all fronts, all the damn time.
I'd like to get it from you in pill form.
And to those whining cretins who love to give you grief about legitimacy
and hearts being in questionable places, let them chew on this: one of
the most memorable moments in a sea of them was looking up at one point
on Wednesday night, before the start of the Rally realizing that the trio
who founded, funded and run this wondrous company are on the front damn
line stuffing a couple of thousand goodie bags!!!!
Oh dear. I've started gushing and I can't
Dear Michael (and the rest of the TAXI Staff):
Just wanted to send a few comments regarding this year's TAXI Road
Rally. As an attendee of all six of the Road Rallies, I can unequivocally
say this one was the best! When I think about the adding of mentor meetings,
a second "open mic" area, the showcasing of artists, "soulmate" lunches,
extra day (etc.) to the usual great speakers, panels and instructional
sessions, it's hard to believe that something like this actually occurs
within the Music Industry.
Over the last six years, I have seen more and more industry people
participate; and for the last few years, those folks have been more and
more willing to accept material from Road Rally attendees. This can only
be because, over the years, TAXI has worked extremely hard to gain a tremendous
amount of credibility and respect within the Music Industry; and the result
of that relationship is, quite simply, an incredible payoff to TAXI members.
Thanks to you, Michael,
Doug, and the entire TAXI Staff for doing what you do. See you all next
I just wanted to thank you for making such an event as the Road Rally
possible! It 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!
I met so many interesting people and have already decided to collaborate
with two of them.
I came all the way from Switzerland and celebrated my birthday during
the TAXI event and I tell you, this Rally was the best gift I could wish
Words (for a songwriter!) don't seem adequate when trying to describe
the experience of the Road Rally, or to express my appreciation for all
you do to find and make opportunities for us.
Thanks so much,
Valerie De La Cruz
I just wanted to say thank you to Michael & the entire TAXI staff.
The Road Rally was amazing. I learned so much and I made some great contacts.
Hats off to all of you wonderful people at TAXI from this struggling Canadian
In the words of Jason Blume, "It is possible!"
(on the East Coast of Canada)
Congratulations on an extremely successful event this past weekend! It
was my first trip to the Road Rally and it was by far one of the most interesting,
informative and entertaining events I've ever attended for business or personal
Kansas City. MO
Michael and Doug,
Hearty congrats to you and your team for another spectacular Road
Rally! I think I speak for most of my fellow members when I say that it
is inspirational, instructional, inspirational, friendly, inspirational,
and just a ton of fun. You clearly go out of your way to make each year's
Rally better than the last. It's always hard to see how you can top the
previous Rally, but with the extra day, the mentoring sessions, the two
venues for open mic and all the rest, you've raised the bar way above
and beyond the call of duty. I know what goes into something like this,
and you do it masterfully.
Now, what are you gonna do NEXT year?
Ann Arbor, MI
Hello Alex, Doug, Michael, Michael, Chris, and Clint...
It's a great thing you do. We learned some new things, got solid work,
great advice, and met many, many talented people.
Frankly, we think it's the best and most innovative music conference
out there, even including SXSW. The mentor lunches and the approachability
of the panelists make all the difference.
Johnny Young & Michelle Young
I can't say THANKS enough. I just got back from the Road Rally and
just wanted to tell you it was the most productive weekend of my music
I met so many great people on personal and business levels. We also
made a contact who is going to get our disc in the hands of the producer
of Dawson's Creek to play on the show.
I've only been a member for 2-3 months. Needless to say I am very
impressed with TAXI, thus far.
All the best and thanks again,
Dean Person from the band Butterfinger
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!!!
The Road Rally was so educational! So many musicians were able to do in
four days what usually takes years.
We loved your choice of speakers, we loved your staff, we loved it
Thanks for everything,
Dear Michael, Doug, Michael, and TAXI Staff,
Thank you so much for everything you did at the Road Rally. It was
so great meeting you.
Having just joined TAXI, attending the Rally was one of the best things
I could've done this year for my music career. I met so many people, and
learned so much. In Jason Blume's first address, he said "people's lives
are going to change this weekend." Mine did.
I was affected with a fresh outlook, stronger sense of direction,
and eagerness to improve.
Thank you for providing the place and opportunity for a songwriter
like me to meet people like you.
Sioux Falls, SD
Thanks. Congratulations. Great job. You're awesome. Add this letter
to the pile proclaiming what an incredible Road Rally you put on.
I was skeptical. I've been to tons of music seminars put on by reputable
companies. Most of the time I would feel like I was being "sold to." And
it was definitely every man for himself. None of them have ever come close
to the Road Rally. There is a simple reason why: you and your staff really
care about us members.
Right off the bat it was apparent that both the staff and the members
are working together. I have never met so many people who were interested
in what I do (film scoring) as opposed to what I could do for them. The
highlights were during the A&R pitch panel when the audience applauded
the really good songs. Those moments clearly demonstrated that we want
each other to succeed.
But that goodwill stems from your staff. It is obvious how hard all
of you work up to and during the weekend. Yet, you were always friendly,
helpful, and interested in making sure we had a fun and educational weekend.
I cannot imagine being "on" for 72 hours straight like that.
It was apparent when I watched you run the show from the trenches.
I was surprised how much I saw you moderating, talking to members, and
generally commandeering the Rally. Again, that's the difference. It's
your honest desire to help us that makes all of TAXI such a positive experience.
I thank you for giving us musicians true guidance. You should be very
proud of the great work you do.
Arlington, VA 22207
Just wanted to tell you that we had a GREAT time at the Road Rally.
Talk about an eye opener! I came not knowing what to expect and left excited
and motivated to be a success example for next year's Rally. I was really
surprised how everyone was so nice: the A&R people, the TAXI staff, and
the other musicians. This was the first conference of any type that I
was sad to leave.
Anyway, keep up the good work. I WILL BE AT NEXT YEAR'S RALLY FOR
Jason Nokes from Shiver
Dear Michael, Doug, and TAXI Staff,
Thank you for a wonderful conference. It was so well planned
and had so many great aspects.Highlights for me include Jason Blume,
Steve Seskin, Jai Josefs, the open mics, the A&R panels. Well,
heck, I liked it all! It was such a change being around so many songwriters
and musicians. Very inspiring, and a real shot in the arm. (Not to
mention a good dose of reality!) I came away with a clearer vision,
a lot of helpful information, and a big appreciation for TAXI and
See you next year, for sure!
Villa Park, IL
How can the best keep getting better and better? As always, this
Road Rally is still ringing in my ears. And, as you know, I have attended
all six Road Rally's.
Every panel and presentation was filled with tips extremely valuable
to any songwriter, teaching us what to do and (using some TAXI member
submitted CD's) what not to do - as vividly proved by the audience participation
Both Jason Blume's and Jai Josef's songwriting seminars contained
information that every songwriter needs to keep in the very front of his
brain. And Ralph Murphy gave us all the structural secrets for a #1 hit,
laid out on a silver platter. Pat Pattison's seminar on lyric writing was
eye opening, funny, and important.
And where else can you sit in and watch/study while a major songwriter
(Steve Seskin) begins to create a song on the spot! A brilliant TAXI idea!
(It was somehow comforting to hear all those wildly successful Hit Songwriters
on the panel confirm that every one of their newest songs were still very
much subject to rejection.)
The hotel was as sumptuous as ever; the staff bending over backwards.
All the TAXI members I ran into were up, eager to share, and justifiably
enthusiastic. At Rally end, the house-band-of- TAXI-screeners was a very
cool, tight gig, too!
Finally, any musician supposedly trying to make it, but who doesn't
belong to TAXI, can only be, in my estimation, not very serious about
Great job, you guys! I can't wait for next year, although actually
I may not be able to attend: As you can see, I've run out of superlatives!
New York, NY