By Doug Minnick
This month, letís explore the spectrum of reactions that members have to feedback from TAXI. Our first letter:

Dear Michael,

I have been a member of TAXI for probably 4 or 5 years now. I have had a total of 23 forwards but alas I'm still waiting on the elusive deal! However I, like many of your loyal members do firmly believe that the critique process helps us focus our songwriting and improve on our craft. I was reassured of this belief last week when I was informed that I placed First and Second place in the Unisong International Songwriting competition in the Country/Folk category out of nearly 1000 entries.

Thanks for your continued hard work and coaching!

David Leask
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

Nice, huh? We love the letters from the folks who appreciate the critiquing process. We love the deals, too, but these make us feel like we are really helping, even if a deal hasn't been made. By the way, check out David's web site-good stuff!

But every time we get to feeling just a little proud of ourselves, we are brought back down to Earth. Read on....

To Whom It May Concern,

Unless listener # *** is listening to these three songs I know that I have wasted another fifteen dollars. Listener # *** is the only one whom has ever forwarded any of my material. Listener # *** has always complimented my work and gave me high marks on critiques. Meanwhile your other listeners have all sent my CDs back to me, and they tell me what I am doing wrong. Of course I don't feel like I am doing anything wrong. I wrote all the words and music to the songs the way I did, because I'm the one who went through the experience, I felt the emotion, so I painted the picture. That is why they call it ORIGINAL music. For example a couple of your listeners said my drums were too busy, my answer to that is " The drums are as busy as I want them to be at that time." Another one of your listeners can't distinguish between a violin and a synthesizer. Another listener said that my rhyme and my melody was too predictable. I think that listener should research the meaning of a "HOOK"' another listener said that they could not tell where the verse ended and the chorus began. That listener should read the words in the booklet (because it is clearly marked).

And for future reference for this person a chorus is a couple lines in a song that tends to repeat itself, and if they still have trouble distinguishing a chorus from a verse they might call up my neighbors eight year-old little girl, she could tell them.

I welcome all these listeners who have criticized my work, to send me a copy of their CD, so they can show me how it is suppose to be done. Surely they must be wealthy and successful songwriters and accomplished musicians, to be so critical of my work.

Name withheld

We could go on about how it is the responsibility of the communicator to do the communicating, that no one should have to read a lyric sheet in order to figure out where the chorus is, that all artists feel emotion when creating, but the real trick is to make the listener feel it too... but nobody likes a smartass.

But seriously folks, keep those cards and letters coming. We love to hear from you!

Please address questions to:

5010 N. Parkway Calabasas #200,
Calabasas, CA 91302

or e-mail to:

All letters submitted become the property of TAXI and can be edited for length, spelling, grammar and sentence syntax. Basically, we can do whatever we want!

See How TAXI Works

"I can't thank you guys enough for everything you do."
— Peter Elakis,
TAXI Member

"Your dedication and hard work never ceases to amaze me."
— Jimmy Clark,
TAXI Member

"Taxi costs a fraction of a songplugging company."
— Jimmy Clark,
TAXI Member

"Thanks for creating and maintaining this great organization!"
— Angie Peckham,
TAXI Member