Mentor or Tormentor: Submitting Your Music at Demo Panels

Suzie McNeil, Ayah, Brian Thompson & Bobby Gale were part of the demo panel at Songposium 2012.

Written by S.A.C. Member:  Angela Ricci

Writers are to songs as chefs are to their recipes, personal and passionate about their ingredients.  We all crave the same result, recognition for our craft…after all we’re ALL rock stars. But what do you do when the listening panel doesn’t hear what you hear?  Over the years I’ve attended numerous demo listening sessions, most constructive but not all of them kind.  This type of feedback can make or break a songwriter’s will to continue.  The human instinct is to justify the reasoning behind the lyric.

So a couple of suggestions to fellow songwriters…ask yourself why it is you write? Is it for personal or professional goals? Are you writing to have your music placed in film and television OR are you writing for your friend’s wedding? Ask yourself why you are at the listening session and use the critique to answer that question.

Most of us share our creations because we want feedback from non-biased listeners on the panel  and fellow songwriters in the room.  But how do you get a non-biased opinion from a rock panelist when you’re a hip hop artist? Good question and the answer should lay in the panelist’s professional ability to appreciate ALL genres but when that doesn’t happen, DON’T get upset.  It’s all about knowing your audience. Writers need to do their homework and understand each panelist’s background to benefit from the critique. You don’t pitch a rock song when it asks for jazz, right ? Again, don’t be offended.  Know the agenda because they’re not all the same.

EMBRACE the opinions about your works, implement and grow.  Remember  there’s  NOTHING ORIGINAL about SOUNDING THE SAME.    Write cuz u luv 2 not cuz u have 2