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Are You Making This Deal and Placement-Killing Mistake?

There’s a highly effective way to get more deals signed and get more placements, yet most TAXI members don’t take advantage of it. That mistake could slow your progress in signing deals and getting placements.

Sure, countless signings, deals, and placements result from submissions to TAXI’s Industry Listings each year, but a huge chunk of them also happen for members who come to our FREE, World-Class Music Conference each November—the TAXI Road Rally. This year, it will be November 7 – 10.

I know that for many of you, it means you have to fly to Los Angeles to attend. But you’d probably spend at least as much on a nice keyboard or guitar. I drool over great gear as well, but let’s be honest, there’s not a publisher, record label, or music supervisor on planet Earth who will sign you because of the instrument you play.

The music industry is built on relationships, and that’s what TAXI has always given its members through the favorable introductions made when we forward their music to the companies that request it, and in-person at the Road Rally. You’ll see what we mean as you keep reading.

We’ve begun the process of deciding what the panels will be this year, and who will be on them. We’ll open registration soon, and we’ll let you know when you can begin booking your rooms at the completely renovated Westin hotel.

For those of you who have thought about coming for years, but never taken the leap, we’ve gone into the first few pages of our Member Success Stories and copied some verbatim so you can see how the Road Rally has impacted the lives and careers of many of our members. As you read these, take note of where these Rally attendees come from!

They got on airplanes, got off their couches, and out of their comfort zones. They stopped thinking, “Maybe I’ll do it next year,” and look how it paid off for them! And remember, these were copied from just the first few pages of success stories. There are 50 more pages of Member Success Stories you can scroll through if these aren’t enough to make you mark November 7 – 10 on your calendar.

We also highlighted the Road Rally specific passages if you don’t feel like reading the full success stories that the Rally is mentioned in ;-) P.S. None of the people you’ll see below were asked to mention the Rally. These success stories are organic!

All these placements resulted from the Road Rally

Vincent Nicotina

Vincent Nicotina – Gloversville, NY USA
Vincent’s TAXI Forum post: “Recently, I've received a series of Cue sheets in ASCAP and got some nice payouts in the international quarterly statement too. It seems that my music was played all over the place in 2022, and I had no idea about it! Some of the places I had music in 2022 were: Stromboli (Dutch movie on Netflix), Celebrity and Somebody (Korean TV shows on Netflix), Emmettville and Coronation Street (long-running British TV shows), as well as other TV shows in the UK, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Romania, Honduras, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, Australia, and The Con on ABC (a true crime show).”

From Vincent’s follow-up email: “In 2023 so far, I had tunes in the finale of Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies on Paramount+, and had some stuff on German TV, but it's probably too soon to know what happened overseas. The Paramount+ placement paid me a $1,000 sync fee! The true crime show came from a deal I made through a TAXI forward, and my co-writer was someone I met in the registration line at the Rally. My Paramount+ deal came from a library I learned about from a guy I met at the bar at the Rally!

This just goes to show that there really is a long gap (1-2 years) between when your music gets placed and when you learn about it. It takes even longer to get paid. So if you’re frustrated that you got some tunes in a library and they never got placed, just wait a couple of years before you do anything rash! And keep making music and putting it out there. I only have a little over 100 tunes in libraries, but the action is finally starting to pick up! Now I need to press for 200.

All of these successes came from connections I made at the TAXI Road Rally over the last two years. I met a library owner (through the TAXI mentor program) at the Road Rally in 2021, and ended up signing a contract and writing a lot of music for him. Through connections I made with other composers in that first library, I got pulled into two other libraries and released music for them as well. This year (two years from where it all began), I finally found out where all that music has been used and finally started getting paid!

I really like the TAXI community, and the opportunities for networking in a convivial and supportive environment. I came to TAXI for the possibility of getting forwards, but I stayed for the people. It’s a great place to learn the business and meet some people that can help you along the way! Thanks to all the wonderful people like [names omitted for privacy] for the placements listed above, and of course, Michael and TAXI for helping me get an opportunity to find an audience for this music! I'll see you all at the Rally in November!

Road Rally connections result in numerous placements

Greg Carrozza and David Zimmer

Greg Carrozza and David Zimmer – Albuquerque, NM
Greg and fellow member/collaborator, David Zimmer, shared their recent successes. Greg told us, “Here are some new TV show placements from my last PRO statement: I topped 300 placements, including MTV, Matthis Family Matters, Love and Hip Hop Atlanta, House of Ho, and the History Channel’s Crazy Rich Ancients.

Greg also highlighted other notable placements on popular TV shows such as Real Housewives of NJ, Queer Eye, Love Island, Lights Out with David Spade, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, and Growing Up Hip Hop. All those other placements are through deals I signed as a result of TAXI forwards. Couldn’t have done it without you!”

Additionally, Greg shared an anecdote about how he and co-writer, David Zimmer, coincidentally met at the 2018 Road Rally while sitting next to each other during a music listening panel.

David confirmed the classic TAXI story, where he and Greg connected while sitting next to each other in a session in the main ballroom during the Road Rally. Their collaboration expanded to creating Christmas songs for a TAXI-friendly publisher and signing original songs with yet another TAXI-friendly publisher. These connections ultimately led to their most recent placement on the show, All American, on the CW network. David also mentioned his placements on The Young and the Restless, and another on the National Geographic network. He attributed these accomplishments to the connections made through TAXI, the Road Rally, and the education provided by TAXI through the Road Rally and TAXI TV. David emphasized that the supportive community within TAXI has been the most significant aspect of his musical journey, allowing him to develop relationships with like-minded individuals who complement his skills.

TAXI’s convention led to signing a deal

Thomas Goodeluinas

Thomas Goodeluinas – Springfield, MO USA
Here’s a nice note from Thomas! “I'm excited to share some great news with everyone! Recently, I signed three tracks to my first music library, thanks to my attendance at the last TAXI Rally and seizing the opportunities to learn and network. During a conversation with the library owner at the Rally, I gave him my business card (which featured a photo of me playing violin), and in early February, I received an email inviting me to submit my music. This ultimately led to a contract and acceptance of my tracks. Although I've been a TAXI member for a while, this was only my third Rally experience, affirming that being present and ready to connect with like-minded individuals is truly rewarding. Go Rally!

This newfound confidence in having my music heard has invigorated me, and I'm motivated to continue on this path, eagerly anticipating more successes. Thank you, TAXI!”

Signed four of his Country songs with two sync companies

Tom Ervi

Tom Ervin – Greenville, SC USA
Tom recently let us know that he’s signed music licensing deals for four of his country songs, resulting from his submissions to TAXI listings. His songs "She’s Just a Country Girl" and "More Football" found homes with one top notch company, while "Country Memories" and "You’re My Dream Come True" were signed with a second company.

Tom shares, “I only learned about TAXI a couple of years ago, and it’s given me many great opportunities to find a home for my country songs! TAXI’s weekly episodes of TAXI TV on YouTube, as well as the annual Road Rally—which is free for members to attend, allows aspiring musicians and songwriters a great opportunity to network with veterans in the music industry. A TAXI membership is a must for all aspiring musicians and songwriters!”

Had a bunch of new TV placements

Marco Iannello

Marco Iannello – Manchester, UK
Marco is back to let us know about a bunch of recent placements he’s had! “In the past few months, I've had several of my Middle Eastern-flavored tunes placed in Europe. Tension drones like 'Infected Oasis' and 'Virus in the Sand,' co-written with my collaborator Max Carrey, found their way into Fahndung Österreich (Servus TV, Austria) and Brennpunkt Aere (NRK, Norway). Quirky tracks like 'Desert Gangster' and 'Urban Casbah' made an appearance in Achtung Kontrolle (Kabel Eins) in Germany.

All these tunes originate from the same library owner who reached out to me after a forward at the end of 2019. We've built a strong relationship, and I've been producing a lot of music for him and his labels.

Additionally, my track, Impractical Jokers featured 'Hiding in the Closet' again in an episode with Eric André. On top of that, 'Hot Tub Flow' made its way into both Love & Hip-Hop: Miami and Love & Hip-Hop: Atlanta. Miami even utilized the tune in two different spots within the same episode, according to Tunesat. Not bad for 'old' tracks from 2020, wouldn’t you say?

What I appreciate about TAXI is the camaraderie among members and even between members and library owners. Relationships that stem from deals often evolve into friendships. Moreover, the wealth of knowledge about the sync industry available through the TAXI forum, TAXI TV, and the Road Rally conference is invaluable. The Rally, in particular, is worth the price of membership alone. Being in the same space with peers and industry professionals almost always leads to incredible opportunities unfolding.”

MTV placement resulted from a Road Rally Mentor session

Dean Turner

Dean Turner – San Mateo, CA
Dean told us, “I found out that I had a placement in two episodes of The Challenge on MTV. One cue, ‘Labyrinth,’ was placed by a Music Library whose CEO was my One-to-One Mentor at the TAXI Road Rally. That meeting led to a publishing deal.

The other cue, ‘Circle of Deception,’ was placed by yet another Music Library I signed with as a result of a TAXI forward. ‘Circle of Deception’ was also in an episode of House of Pop.”

Dean added, “TAXI’s listings have given me access to people in the music business that I wouldn’t have had otherwise. TAXI TV is a great resource for information and motivation. But the highlight of the year is the Road Rally. It’s a wonderful opportunity to meet and hear from experts in various aspects of the industry. It’s educational and inspirational, and a lot of fun!”

Landed a record deal

Anthony Zarlengo-Reyther

Anthony Zarlengo-Reyther – Denver, CO USA
Here’s a nice note from Anthony: “In August of 2023, my Denver-based heavy metal band, Immortal Sÿnn, had our music forwarded to a record label in the UK through TAXI. After a series of emails and Zoom meetings, we inked a deal with the label to have our upcoming singles and EP released through them. Immortal Sÿnn has been a member of TAXI for many years, and have had our music forwarded many times, most recently to an independent horror movie. But, this is the first time that a forward converted to a deal!

The best part of TAXI is the Road Rally conference, for sure! It’s an invaluable wealth of information and opportunity!”

Landed a deal at TAXI’s Road Rally

Robina Ritchie-Barker

Robina Ritchie-Barker – Duncan, BC, Canada
Here’s an awesome bit of news from Robina after she attended the 2023 Road Rally, last November: "Thanks for getting me to the starting line! :-) This deal was a thrilling surprise!
I thought I’d give a big shout out and a huge thank you to the entire TAXI crew for the amazing Road Rally that netted me my first music library contract! I’m a sync musician, also working on TrackStage, a software for sync musicians, with my husband. Last year, we attended the Road Rally to connect with fellow sync musicians and improve our product. This year, my husband managed TrackStage, and I joined as a musician. I knew the Road Rally would be good for networking, but I kept my expectations in check as this was the first time I’d ever submitted music to the panels. I submitted a few songs and I was thrilled (and slightly terrified) when my piece ‘Exodus’ was randomly chosen to be played. The panelist had wonderful feedback, and while I was pleased that finally my music was being heard and appreciated, I assumed that was as far as things would go this time around.

But last week one of the panelists reached out to me and signed not only ‘Exodus,’ but another of my songs! Now, I’m composing my first orchestral trailer for him. Thanks to TAXI, this process was streamlined.

I’m truly excited that I’ve finally ‘broken the seal’ and have started building a positive industry relationship - something that would have been exponentially more difficult to get started had it not been for TAXI and the Road Rally panel. I’m a big fan of TAXI for the tremendous value it gives its members, whether through networking, watching TAXI TV, or learning how to get very specific when writing for the briefs. And the Road Rally? Well, there’s nothing like it.

Thanks again for all the great work you do!”

Another deal resulting from the Rally

Stephen Wood

Stephen Wood – Seattle, WA, USA
Stephen emailed to tell us about another deal he recently signed after the Road Rally: “I've been very busy with a few short film scores, teaching, and developing some sync licensing albums. I've been seeing lots of great TAXI listings as well! My main reason for emailing now is to give some great news! As a result of attending my first Road Rally (2023), I’ve signed my first licensing agreement with a prominent production music library.

I became a member of TAXI in late 2022. Throughout the year I immersed myself in the TAXI listings, composing new music every week. I took all the critiques to heart from the non-forwards making sure I learned from each one. A few of my tracks were forwarded to libraries and supervisors. My personal colleagues and mentors started encouraging me to attend the Road Rally and to trust what TAXI was saying about the conference. So I did and it worked! I made tons of new connections and ended up signing my first library contract!

Now, eight of my tracks (which wouldn't have been composed if it weren't for TAXI listings) are now signed and active.

After one year of membership and hard work with TAXI, I've had a few forwards, signed with an exclusive library, and learned more than I ever have at any academic institution. I'm excited to see what the next year with TAXI brings! Thank you very much for all that you do and providing great opportunities above and beyond your own specific briefs. Your A&R team’s feedback has been the major factor in my development over the past year. That composing and production development, along with my Road Rally participation, directly resulted in my first library contract. Very inspiring to keep working throughout the next year while still submitting to TAXI.”

Song placed in Hyundai TV commercial

John Pearson

John Pearson – Hendersonville, TN, USA
John and his co-writers and fellow TAXI members, Greg Carrozza and Becky Ketelsen, landed a great placement. Here’s the story. “I’m stoked to report a nationwide Hyundai TV commercial placement that my co-writers and I landed! The song is 'Do It Like This' by our band 'Reveica' and is available on all DSPs. My fellow band members Becky Ketelsen and Greg Carrozza, who are also fellow TAXI members, wrote this remotely in 2022, and I pitched it to a publisher I had met through another TAXI member. That publisher asked us to do an album, and so far off of that collection, we have also landed a national TV ad with Samsung, and internet ads with Kleo Color and several other companies. I would have never made these connections if not for TAXI and the networking opportunities TAXI provides. Be it TAXI TV, the TAXI Forums, or the TAXI Road Rally, the networking is second to none!”

John added, “I really like the inspiration that TAXI’s daily briefs afford, but my favorite thing about TAXI has been the networking that comes with attending the annual Road Rally in person. Those Road Rallies and the TAXI Forums have helped propel my career faster than anything else I have done.”

Four deals signed on numerous tracks

Todd Bordonaro

Todd Bordonaro, Bronx, NY, USA
Here’s some great news from Todd... “I'm fairly new to TAXI, and in 2022 I attended my first Road Rally. I met someone [a music library executive] the first night at the bar hangout. We hit it off immediately, and I sent a few tracks for review. I ended up signing a contract and have since created 12 tracks for that company.

My goal at the 2023 Road Rally was to do more networking. I met two other music licensing executives and signed contracts with both of them, as well. I’ve now signed four deals as a direct result of attending the Road Rally! I’ve also been collaborating with some fabulous musicians I’ve met at your conference, and the tracks we’re producing go to the companies I've made deals with through TAXI. My feeling is, if you don't attend the Road Rally conference, then you're only getting a small part of what TAXI has to offer. Looking forward to the 2024 Rally!”

Signed 6 Sports Rock pieces

Tim Walker

Tim Walker – Tampa, FL, USA
Tim posted about a great connection he made at the Road Rally last November, “I signed four songs from connections I made at the Road Rally 2023. I met a music library owner at the Road Rally. He was saying he had the immediate need for ‘sports rock’ type things, and this is exactly what style I’ve been writing in. We exchanged contact information and I sent him a playlist when I got home, and he was prompt in getting back to me with what songs he wanted. Since I made that post, he’s picked up two new songs as well. I’ve now got a total of six songs signed. I’m fairly new to TAXI, but I can say The Road Rally is an incredible opportunity for learning and networking.”

Road Rally resulted in getting signed!

Michael Leeman

Michael Leeman – Chapel Hill, Australia
Michael reports, “I traveled from Australia recently to attend my first Road Rally, and this trip included a brief and memorable Californian holiday with my wife beforehand. This was our first visit to the USA.

About six months ago, I bought a good quality classical guitar, and after a long break I began working to regain technique. This eventually encouraged me to have a go at writing some original classical and Spanish guitar music. A music library owner who attended the Road Rally liked the two Flamenco-ish style tracks which he listened to in a Road Rally mentor session, and another track since then, and has now offered a deal! He also asked me how many more similar tracks I could provide him with in the next three months. Would you believe it?! I would say that if I hadn’t made the effort to attend the Rally, the above would not have happened.”

Got a placement on France 5

Bob Gardner

Bob Gardner – Akron, OH, USA
Bob reports, “In 2021, I had a swamp rock instrumental cue forwarded to a prominent production music library. They signed that track and I subsequently ended up doing two complete albums for them. From one of those albums, an album of Chicago blues-style instrumentals, two tracks were placed on a show that aired on a TV station called France 5. One cue was used for its entire length of 2:30!

I had a co-writer on those tracks, a gentleman I initially met through TAXI. At last year's TAXI Road Rally music conference — I was unable to afford this year's, unfortunately — I met a person whom I have collaborated with a great deal. We’ve signed a vocal song with another well-known company, whose owner I met at the Eat & Greet Luncheon at the Road Rally in 2022, as well as some instrumental tracks with yet another Los Angeles-based music licensing company.

My accomplishments thus far are rather insignificant when compared to those of some of TAXI’s long-time members, but they’re important to me, and it’s hard to imagine that I would have accomplished anything had I not become a TAXI member. TAXI has enabled me to learn what the industry wants, how to produce it, put me in touch with like-minded collaborators, and ultimately has helped me sign deals that have gotten me some of the first of, what I hope will be, many, many placements.”

ABC and HBO placements from Road Rally relationships

Bob Mete

Bob Mete – Earlysville, VA, USA
More placements for Bob Mete, yay! “I love those quarterly statements from BMI and my favorite Publisher. Found out I had a second placement on Good Trouble (ABC), and two more placements on Game Theory, on HBO. The song was co-written with Sue Straw (Sue is also playing the Native American Flutes).

Both of these were placed by TAXI-friendly Publishers. My relationship with these publishers came from interaction at the TAXI Road Rally. Thank you, TAXI! You help make all of this possible!”

Made $40,000 from a Jack Daniel’s TV commercial

Braiden Wood

Braiden Wood – Titusville, FL
Braiden shared this great story, “Hello! To anyone reading, my name is Braiden Wood. I was a founding member and toured with the pop-rock band, Before You Exit. We had the privilege of playing shows with All Time Low, Yellowcard, and Mayday Parade.

Back in 2017, my manager recommended that I also look into the sync music industry and signed me up for TAXI. As I started watching TAXI TV and submitting songs to listings, I quickly learned it was a different goal in sync and started testing the waters by submitting to different genres. November rolled around and I attended my first TAXI Road Rally conference in Los Angeles. It was an awesome trip! I gained valuable insight and made lots of great connections with other producers and songwriters there.

Shortly after the conference, I submitted two TAXI listings under the ‘Advertising’ heading. They both mentioned that the placements could be in the ballpark of $10,000! One was a calm serene ad and one was a sports-oriented TV commercial. Little did I know that the listings came from the same sync company. Both submissions passed through TAXI’s screening, and shortly after that I got a call from a music licensing company to discuss the songs and what working together could look like. Since then that company has signed many of my songs and placed them in TV commercials like Jack Daniel’s, Alta, and Teachers Credit Union! And to top it off, the Jack Daniel’s ad has made over $40,000 so TAXI’s listing didn’t lie! I’m truly grateful for that music licensing company, and TAXI for all your hard work and for teaching me how to be successful in the sync music industry.

I had a few other publishers sign songs, two of which I still do some work for. I've had placements on shows like Married to Medicine and Black Ink Chicago, through one of the companies for trap placements. I've found that working with the first company that the advertising lane is my favorite genre to be in, and they are such a talented team so it's really a joy to get to work with them.

I think the best part about TAXI is the free education I’ve gotten. TAXI TV is such a great learning spot, and the Road Rallies are so worth the time and effort to travel to, as you gain so much in such a short time there. From the classes to the panels, to the mentors and relationships you leave with, it really felt like Michael (TAXI’s CEO), and all of the TAXI team genuinely wanted to see everyone thrive! I am very grateful for TAXI, and love getting to work with the great music licensing companies I’ve met.”

Helen S. Young

Helen S. Young – Austin, TX, USA
Helen sent in this nice note about how TAXI’s music convention, the Road Rally, helped her land a deal: “At the last TAXI Road Rally, I made some connections and one, a music library owner, recently invited me to pitch for an orchestral listing. My piece was signed. The library owner then asked for submissions in some other genres he was looking for. I submitted a piano and cello piece, and it also was signed. I’m so happy and thankful for the great connection I made through the TAXI Road Rally and look forward to attending again this year!”