By Kenny Kerner

Don't let Matt's statistics fool you. In reality, he and his band do a lot more than merely collect unemployment checks. The guys have been very successful placing songs on their own: Four songs on MTV's The Real World, one on ABC's Life As We Know It, one on FOX's Roswell, one on She Spies, and one song used for an Arizona Jeans promo.

So why, you might ask, did Matt opt for becoming a member of TAXI? Well, let's read his story and find out, shall we?

Do you come from a musical family? Do you play an instrument?

MD: My grandfather on my mom's side played the saxophone in the World War II Army band. It kept him away from the front lines. On the other side of my family, I have one cousin who plays jazz saxophone and another cousin who plays piano/organ. He played organ for the St. Louis Blues hockey team for years.

My twin brother and I got a set of drums and guitar when we were 6-years-old. I got the drums and my brother the guitar. We didn't really get into playing seriously until sixth grade when three buddies asked us to join their band. We haven't put down the instruments since. What's really interesting is that eventually, I took up the guitar and my twin played drums. Now he plays keyboards and sings and I play guitar and sing.

Did you continue playing music in high school and/or college? When did you begin to think it could actually be a career for you?

MD: I was a big soccer player. We had bands all through junior high and high school. My soccer career went downhill and music was constantly getting better. We wrote and recorded original material all through high school. A lawyer out of Chicago swore that if we'd move to Chicago he'd make us famous. We all wanted to go to college, so the band lost a member and reformed in Champaign at the University of Illinois. None of us thought we would graduate. We were sure we'd have a record deal by then. Well, I'm 33 now. I've had a demo deal with Virgin Records, but to this date, no major label has released any of my material. I got my degree in English.

At what point did you begin writing original material and what happened to the material you wrote? Did you record it? Did it just sit there?

MD: I began writing in high school. We recorded in my parents' basement a lot. Then we got booted to the garage and made some recordings there. We did one studio recording while we were in high school at the studio owned by a guy who worked at the local music store in Collinsville, Illinois.

How did you first hear about TAXI ?

MD: I heard about TAXI through ads and asked a few people about it. I knew a few of the screeners and talked to them. They spoke highly of It, so we figured it couldn't hurt to try.

What made you become a member and were you suspicious at first?

MD: Definitely suspicious. I believed that they were legit, but I've have had contact over the years with many different A&R people at major labels, music supervisors for major TV and films companies, so I really didn't think I needed to use TAXI. But things were slow and I wanted to try it.

Describe your relationship with TAXI.

MD: They've been very supportive and responsive to my band's music. We've been forwarded along for tons of stuff but have not really had any deals come from it. Maybe that will change. But we haven't been submitting lately because we're writing a new record and we will see what Cathy and the gang think of that when we're done.

Are the song critiques you receive useful to you?

MD: Some of the critiques are useful. Music is a subjective art, so everyone is entitled to his opinion. However, if you start hearing the same thing from numerous people, it makes you think about their comments and at least try them.

What has being a TAXI member taught you about the music business?

MD: That Chip Schloss truly is a weirdo — just kidding. He's a TAXI screener friend of mine. Being a TAXI member reminds me that there are many opportunities constantly arriving and changing in the music business.

Would you recommend TAXI to others?

MD: I would definitely recommend TAXI to younger artists or people who don't have many contacts in the music business. I can't guarantee that the TAXI forwards get heard or not. I'm sure some A&R reps listen, some don't. There are a million different reasons why some bands get signed and released and others don't. And we all know that almost nobody is going to do anything for you in the music business... it's a self made endeavor.

So, my feeling is that if being a member of TAXI increases your chances of having a career in the music business, why not go for it. I've spent more money on a bar tab than what it costs to be a part of TAXI. Or maybe it sounds better to say, "I've spent more money on a haircut than what it costs to be a part of TAXI." That makes me sound so fashionable, don't you think?

Well, there you have it. Successfully getting his original tunes into major TV shows, yet, still a TAXI member because Matt wants to open as many doors as possible! And that's what TAXI can do for you, too.

See How TAXI Works

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

"I signed a two-song deal with a major Music Library for film and TV."
— Bob Kroeger,
TAXI Member

"I am in awe of the sheer volume of amazing ideas to help musicians that you not only come up with, but make into real opportunities."
— Mara,
TAXI Member

"TAXI provided real access to a nearly inaccessible industry."
— John Mendoza,
TAXI Member

"With help from you guys, the music is pouring out and I'm having such fun! Thanks!"
— Willie McCulloch,
TAXI Member

"You are making an incredible difference in the lives of musicians and artists trying to break into the business!"
— Rob Khurana,
TAXI Member