Answered by Michael Laskow, CEO, TAXI
Dear Readers,

We sometimes get asked to compare our convention, the Road Rally, to other large-scale musician conventions. We have refrained from doing so because we might be seen as biased. ;-)

I saw the post below on our Forum today, and thought it answered the question well, as the person writing it had been to both events. I've edited out the name of the other gathering because we are friendly with the company that holds the convention, and don't want to cast any aspersions. There may be other people who post on this thread who present another view in the future, so to keep this fair and balanced, here's the link to the thread so you can follow it further if you'd like.

Found on the TAXI message board 4.12.08

Hey guys, just thought I'd reply with an update, as I've been here for a few days now and am about to head in to the final day of the (name omitted).

It's been very interesting for sure, but honestly with the price tag (a couple hundred depending on when you signed up), or even if it were free, it's definitely nowhere near as valuable as the TAXI Rally. There's such a focus there on connecting people and getting them to the next step, and the attendees seemed to run the gamut from the very beginners to the very successful.

Here, I don't mean to bash it, but I feel like this (name omitted) is worse in both regards. The vast majority of attendees seem to be a lot less educated / knowledgeable about what they're doing, and the panels tend to be mostly interviews with famous people, with very little information about connecting the dots of a career and starting out. It seems to be a funny disconnect when the bulk of their attendees need focus on first steps into the industry and help making connections and all of the panels (with one or two notably great exceptions) are either interviews with famous people, information you can find in books, or worse, run by people trying to sell you something.

Now all that said, I love (name omitted), but as far as a trip to LA (I hear you Ted, I'm thinking next year I might stick with just the one!), the Rally had TONS more valuable information and networking for someone at square 2 (definitely past square 1, but not very far past it yet). Everything from the Drive-By Mentoring to the Mentor Luncheons to the one-on-one sessions (which they technically have here but which were all filled up by six months before the convention so I didn't get to have one), to the performance opportunities are all well-designed to facilitate industry connection at the Rally, and I think (name omitted) could definitely learn a thing or two (admittedly this is only the 3rd (name omitted), so I'm sure they're still learning furiously!).

— I'll cut my rant off here, but thought I'd share with all concerned!


I once read that it's important to use the hook or part of the song's hook in the title. Can you please tell me why?

— Name withheld on request

Good question, relatively short answer (at least for me;-). If you hear a song on the radio, and it makes you want to buy it later, using the most memorable part of the song as the title seems like a smart idea. It makes it easier to find!

Even if you're doing instrumental music for Film and TV placements, giving your track the right title could get you more placements. If you worked at Fox Sports and needed music to use for the end of the NBA Championship game where the winning team was awarded the trophy, would you choose "Sunrise Avenue" or "Champions Anthem Up-tempo" while searching the publisher's catalog?

It's often the little things that add up to success!

— Warm regards,


I've noticed that you are placing more and more listings that say that the music is going to be screened by the actual person who needs it. Most of them are publishers and music supervisors, and I even saw one Dispatch listing that said that an A&R person from the major label was going to come in to screen the music.

It's great to know that the music is being heard by the very people who need it, but they don't do critiques for those listings. Why not, and do you think they ever will?

— Thank you for a great service,

Nomi Band

You're right that we are offering more of the listings that have the actual industry decision makers coming to our office to listen. I think we've been around for so long, and have established enough credibility with the industry people that they feel comfortable working with us in that way.

We think it's great that you get heard directly by the people who make the final decision. It's just another way we can help you guys.

The downside (if you can call it that) is that these people are very busy, and they don't really have the time it would take to critique the songs. Frankly, our screener training is much more rigorous than you might think. It would be so time consuming to train the industry people to meet our standards that it would be enough to scare them off.

We didn't want to see these incredible opportunities go away, so we made it as easy as possible for the people running the listings to find what they need, hence, no critiques. It was a trade off either we ran the listings with no critiques, or we could have insisted they DO critiques, and have them NOT run the opportunities at all.

We chose the path we thought would benefit our members most. And by the number of deals being done through these direct listings, we think we made the wise choice.

— Thanks for asking,


Please address questions to:

5010 N. Parkway Calabasas #200,
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