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The Muse's News

Issue 12.4 - July 2009
ISSN 1480-6975

This issue sponsored by:

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I n T h i s I s s u e :

@-- Editor's Musings
@-- Music Reviews - Chip Withrow, Alex Jasperse & Don Sechelski
@-- New Artist Spotlight Additions
@-- Songwriting Book Review - by Ed Teja
@-- Musical Notes - Songwriting Contests & Market Info.
@-- Muse's Clues - Songwriting Web sites that inspire - brought
to you by singer/songwriter & teacher, Irene Jackson.
@-- Featured Article - LOOKING FOR A PUBLISHER? BE ONE!
- by Eric Beall
@-- On Site Featured Article - An article already online for your
viewing pleasure.
@-- Classifieds & Useful Services
@-- Contact information
ISSN 1480-6975. Copyright 1998-2008 - Jodi Krangle.
For more contact information, see end of issue.

All sorts of products and services especially for songwriters,
negotiated so that you get the best price possible. You'll find
means of promotion and distribution, songwriting aids,
educational products, musical instruments and their accessories,
and lots more. Find the perfect gift for the songwriter in your
life - even if it's you!
S p o n s o r M e s s a g e :

(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)


The best way to learn about writing it to write - and what better
way to learn than under the mentorship of Berklee College of
Music songwriting instructors., the online
extension school of Berklee College of Music, offers a number of
instructor-led online songwriting courses that provide the tools,
the support, and the practice environment you'll need to express
yourself more effectively in words and music. Berkleemusic also
offers forward-thinking music business online courses in music
publishing, concert touring, legal aspects, and more for
musicians that want to blend their musical ability with business

Enrollment is also now open for their June 29th Term.

For more information visit:

E d i t o r ' s M u s i n g s :

Hello for another month! I'm sending it out slightly early this
time around so that you'll all have enough time to look into the
latest term at Berklee College of Music (which starts on the
29th!) if you're interested.

In the meantime, there's lots going on around here. I'll get
right to the raffle winners (there's info on how you could be one
of them, below!) so I can get you to the meat of the matter. :)

* Ray Withrow, from Tomball, TX, has won a copy of
Virtual Studio Systems' Lyricist software

* Thoth Ganesh, from Oakville, ON Canada, has won a copy of's Musician's Toolkit CD

* Robin Akovenko from Troutdale, OR, has won a free 3
month membership to SongU (, an
Internet-based learning environment providing online coaching,
co-writing and pitching opportunities, in addition to over 70
multi-level courses developed by award-winning songwriters.

* Carol Sokoloff from Victoria, BC Canada has won a copy of the
book reviewed in last month's newsletter: The "RealEasy" Ear
Training Book: A Beginning/Intermediate Guide to Hearing the
Chord Changes By Roberta Radley (

If you'd like one of these fantastic prizes for yourself, feel
free to write to me with your first two choices for a raffle
prize, include your contact information so I know where to *send*
it, and that's it! You're in! :) The prizes are all listed at
the top of .

In the meantime, Happy Summer, folks! May you find it

All the best,


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S p o n s o r M e s s a g e :

(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)


You Can Play Guitar author and publisher Scott Morris now offers
7 Free email guitar lessons that include easy to learn guitar
tablature, a sound file and free guitar lesson videos of his easy
to learn Billboard top rated guitar method that includes learning
guitar scales and theory used by professional songwriters. The
Free Guitar Lesson Videos - teach samples of learning the names
of the notes, sharps and flats, easy to play guitar chords and
more great information for beginner to professional level

But not only that - his lessons are currently $60 off their
regular price - AND he's offering free shipping within the US!
There's never been a better time than now to improve your guitar
playing (and there's a bass guitar course there too!).

Want to know more?


M u s i c R e v i e w s : Chip Withrow, Alex Jasperse
& Don Sechelski


Chip Withrow:

* Roy Rogers
* Moonspank

Don Sechelski:

* Hilary Hawke
* Dodd Ferrelle



For bios on each of the reviewers, see . If you're
considering sending in your own CD for review, you can also view
that page to find out which reviewer reviews your genre. Thanks!

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N e w A r t i s t S p o t l i g h t A d d i t i o n s :

Great music is only a click away!
Here are just some of the great CDs highlighted in the
Artist Spotlight section of The Muse's Muse at

Frank Villafañe - Genre: JAZZ 

Punto De Vista (ViewPoint), Frank Villafañe's latest CD, blends
traditional latin rhythms and forms with contemporary technology.
Incorporating modern inventive stylings and electronica, it
strikes a balance between the established and the unconventional.
Completely computer generated, Punto De Vista (ViewPoint) is an
atypical latin jazz release, and perfects Frank's pioneer concept
of virtual latin jazz.


Nancy Falkow - Genre: SINGER/SONGWRITER

Nancy Falkow is a melodic and soulful singer-songwriter from
Philadelphia, who relocated to Dublin, Ireland in June 2004 on
the heels of her well received 3rd release, "Clear View." As a
vocalist Falkow has landed guest spots on recordings from Astrud
Gilberto to G Love. Her most cherished career highlight was when
she toured as a vocalist with Daniel Lanois on his "Shine" Tour
in 2003. She is also half of the duo Sunflow and released "Under
the Stars" in November 2008.

S o n g w r i t i n g B o o k R e v i e w : by Ed Teja

by Penny Dionne & Troy McConnell
Writing songs is (when properly done, as Jimmy Webb points out)
hard work. So perhaps thinking about marketing your work is the
last thing you want to do when you are on an artistic roll. You
are an artist, after all and you've already taken on the chores
of writing the song, often arranging it, and getting a radio
ready recording made (you didn't think a demo would do in this
market, did you?). But the business of songwriting means getting
your song to a recording artist and where is there time and
energy for that?

Enter the songplugger. This is the business to business marketing
person who contracts with you to find the right home, or at least
a home, for your song. The songplugger might work for your
publisher, or directly for you, under contract. This person, or
company, has one focus—getting the right songs pitched to the
decision makers for the right artists.

This book is about that task. In some ways this book relates most
to those of you writing country music, or writing for artists who
record in Nashville. There, songplugging is the norm, whereas it
is less common in other music towns. But then the culture of
Nashville is a networking culture. Outsiders call it clubby. But
the skill to network, and an aptitude and love for it is an
essential part of songplugging. Oh yeah, and although it is a
business, you have to love, really, really love music.

Songpluggers work on retainer, commission (of royalties,
placement fees, etc.), and a combination of these. It takes a
fair amount of faith in your songs to put out money on a monthly
basis to someone who is "trying" to place your songs. Your faith
in your music is up to you, but this book offers a number of
ideas on ways you can ensure that the person you are paying is a
legitimate songplugger — and what that means in the absence of
any industry standards.

While Dionne and McConnell provide a fairly detailed look at the
life, the trials and tribulations, the joys, the excitement and
frustrations of songplugging, and give you a step by step guide
to songplugging, the most important aspects of this book for a
songwriter are those that let you realize what a songplugger can
and cannot do for you. If anything, a good songplugger will
insist that you do your job completely before sending songs out
there, because they are not going to represent tunes that are not
competitive. Whether your song is great, but the demo is, well,
just a demo, or the song itself needs work to make it a hit (or
even commercially viable), the songplugger becomes a first line
of the industry’s dreaded "gatekeepers." The good news is that if
you can wow the songplugger, you probably have something hot on
your hands. This books helps give some tips on what that takes as
well, in how to prepare your offering and the songwriting itself
(ditch the ballads, Leroy).

Overall, this is a wonderful insight to the entire songwriting
world in Nashville. Case histories, anecdotes and a series of
interviews with songpluggers, songwriters, and industry pros add
personal perspectives. Even if you are thinking about pitching
songs to metal bands, this is a great book for getting the look
and feel of the day to day process of pitching songs (how
relationships do and do not work), and a general handle on the
business of plugging songs. Every serious songwriter should have
this information.



Ed Teja writes a broad range of music. His songs and
instrumentals have appeared in television shows (Court TV and
Discover Channel) and in a variety of videos. He has had two CDs
released by Morrhythm Records ( and is
currently cowriting songs with an exciting singer who is working
on her second CD. As a performer, Ed has appeared at strange
venues in Hong Kong, Canada, St. Martin, Bequia, Venezuela,
Grenada and Trinidad, as well as the Silver City (New Mexico)
Blues festival, Pickamania, and the Tucson (Arizona) Folk

You can hear some of Ed's music at:

If you'd like *your* book reviewed (as long as it has something
to do with songwriting, of course!), please do email us and let
us know!


S p o n s o r M e s s a g e :

(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)


(Muse's News readers get a special summer discount!)

MasterWriter is one of the most remarkable software programs ever
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M u s i c a l N o t e s : Songwriting Contests & Market Info.

In the interest of conserving space, I will only be including
changes to this listing in this newsletter. All other contests
and market information that have already been listed here, are
displayed at & . Please check there
regularly for updates!

The highly recommended Great American Song Contest is open to
amateur songwriters everywhere. This annual international event
features prestigious awards to 45 winners in 9 categories and
provides $10,000 in Prizes. Music-industry judges include
prominent publishers, music producers and recording artists.
Entrants receive written evaluations of their songs. Songwriters,
lyricists and composers are invited. Sponsored by Songwriters
Resource Network, a trusted educational resource for songwriters
everywhere. Submission deadline is October 30, 2009. For details,
visit: For details, visit:

A regional favorite for years, this contest is now open to all
songwriters no matter where you live. And this year, all entrants
receive a free SongU course just for entering. Eleven winners
will split $35,000 worth of prizes, with an increased Grand Prize
of $2,500 US cash, a chance to headline the annual Winners'
Concert, and more publicity and goodies from the sponsors. All
ages, all styles, and winners keep all rights to their songs.
Mail-in deadline is September 1, with a special extension until
September 15 for entering on-line through Sonicbids. Sponsored by
Elderly Instruments,,, and Go to for everything
you need to enter.
ARE YOUR SONGS BEING PLAYED ON THE RADIO? FIND OUT NOW! is an independent, music-auditing technology
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We listen to the radio... lots and lots of radio. Then we take
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This year's staff includes: Skip Ewing, Deanna Bryant, and Clay
Mills. (Applications must be postmarked by May 15)

Based on the merit of their work, selected applicants are invited
to spend an entire week personally mentored and guided by three
of today’s most successful songwriters. Plus, if You are
selected, You will attend on a scholarship worth $2500 and pay no
tuition.Selected applicants will receive concentrated songwriting
mentorship in the areas of creativity, self-exploration and
observation, music business, co-writing, craftsmanship and more.
Scholarships provide for food, lodging, songwriting instruction,
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For more information please contact

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Do you have a dream of having your music heard, being on the
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best possible chance for achieving your dream, because it's not
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that dream, to schedule your free consultation, just go to or call (573) 814-2169.
You can talk with the owner, Jason Cannata, directly, ask him any
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Music Promotion. If you believe in yourself and your dreams, and
never give up, anything is possible, so contact Song Warrior
Music today and
Go For It!

REO Rafting Resort is hosting its 10th annual songwriting retreat
July 12-17, 2009, featuring CMA female vocalist of the year Pam
Tillis, Songwriter of the year Beth Nielsen Chapman, Berklee
College of Music's Pat Pattison and author and songwriting coach
Jai Josefs. Experience one-on-one time with instructors and
songwriters in addition to private critique sessions, daily
social hours, open-mic and co-writing sessions in an
all-inclusive resort facility located in beautiful British
Columbia, Canada. REO's one of a kind resort is surrounded by the
jade-green Nahatlatch river, snow capped mountains and scenic
forests of pine to add to the inspirational experience of this
retreat. Seats are limited so book now.

For more information please contact retreat organizer, Bryan
Fogelman, at or see our website:

The Deli is the website that every A&R person and local promoter
checks out on a weekly basis. Our publication and web sites focus
on local music scenes and emerging artists (from rock to folk to
experimental, with a little bit of hip hop as well). We currently
publish a printed magazine about the NYC music scene and have
daily updated , separate web pages tackling the new emerging
music in NYC, LA, SF and Nashville. Check it out here

You can submit your music via the web through our open blog pages
(here's the one for Nashville:

The author of The Little Black Book Of Band Profit Secrets has
come thru again! He's just published: "Co-Op Synergy Power, Your
Fast-Track To Profit, Exposure And Free Advertising..." and fans can get it for free.

Click here>

And be sure to check out The Little Black Book Of Band Profit
Secrets while your there... It's worth the look.
STUDIOTRAXX.COM: BREAKING NEW GROUND - FOR YOU! provides an e-commerce platform that allows
artists/bands to purchase and book time with musicians,
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studio collaboration purposes. They facilitate the entire music
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StudioTraxx is actively building its talent network and is
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26,000 live music venues of all sizes are featured including
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for more information!

Pete & Pat Luboff will pay for the phone call for Muse's Muse
songwriters who use the Luboffs' songwriting consultation
service. The service provides detailed, constructive song
analysis, answers to all your creative and business questions and
references to contacts when appropriate. Visit for more information.

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M u s e ' s C l u e s : by Irene Jackson

©1998-2009 Moonstone Productions All Rights Reserved.
Used By Permission

These days it gets more and more difficult to find websites that
are less about splash and more about content. However, there are
a few good souls out there who still offer up lots of info or
tips or tricks on their websites, rather than just trying to sell
you something.

Now, don't get me wrong, the website I'm going to introduce you
to has something to sell too, but Robin Frederick
( gives you plenty to read and do
on her website besides buying her book. There is a beginner's
guide called "Notes On Songwriting" which gives you a
step-by-step guide to writing songs, as if you were starting from
scratch. Another really interesting section called "The Sandbox"
that gives you some exercises to try out, in order to "kick-start
your creativity", like picking a song in public domain and
adapting it by re-writing the lyric or changing the existing one.

In the "Study The Hits" section, Robin gives you a list of five
popular songs to study including one that I really like called
"I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz, and then she does her own analyzation
of each of them, breaking them down and showing you what works in

In the "Songwriting Tips and Techniques" area, you'll find
excerpts from her book. They include "Look For the Melody That
Lives in Your Lyric" and one called "Use Contrast to Get
Attention!" She includes a large section of songwriter resources
with books, software, music instruction and songwriting contests,
and of course, she is selling her book called "Shortcuts to Hit
Songwriting". She also has a link to MyBlogLog, which features
her Twitter entries that include some creative suggestions that
might inspire you. For example, just a few days ago she wrote
"Images add power to your lyric and draw listeners in. Choose an
image - a place, object, or person - and use it in a verse.
Describe it!" There are lots more there.

Robin Frederick is a former Director of A&R for Rhino Records and
has written more than 500 songs for television, records, theatre
and audio products. And she gives lots of juicy, free advice, so
grab it while you can!


Irene Jackson is a performing songwriter from Victoria, BC in
Canada. Aside from writing, recording and performing, she also
maintains a website for songwriters that includes tips, articles
and a songwriter's messageboard.

Songwriting Tips:

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F e a t u r e d A r t i c l e : By Eric Beall


These days, it seems like everyone wants to be a music publisher.
Investment firms are lining up to start new music publishing
companies like Kobalt, Primary Wave, and Evergreen Music. Record
labels are insisting on 360 deals that would force artists to
sign to the label's publishing entity. Individual A&R people are
starting publishing ventures, like David Massey's Liberal Arts
Music. Suddenly, everyone thinks they're a publisher.

Everyone except songwriters.

Judging by my interactions on a day to day basis, at industry
events, conventions, and songwriting clinics, most songwriters
just want to find a publisher. They don't want to be one.

This is unfortunate. Because unlike the investors, record labels,
A&R people, and others who are flocking to the world of music
publishing, songwriters are the ones who are actaully most
qualified to get in the game. After all, they are already are

That's right. From the moment you write your first song, you are
officially a music publisher-you control the publishing on that
song unless or until you make a deal to transfer that control to
someone else. So if that's the case, why are so many songwriters
trying to find publishers? What they really need to do is learn
to be a good one.

The truth is, until songwriters take control of their own
publishing company, and begin to generate some activity and
income from their catalog of songs, they are unlikely to attract
the attention of any major publisher. These larger companies are
looking for writers with whom they can become a business
partner-they want to get on a train that's already moving. No
publishing company is looking to sign writers with nothing going
When an aspiring songwriter asks me how to find a good publisher,
I usually reply, "Become one".

Not to say that it's easy. For those that don't know, and that
includes plenty of folks who've graduated from music business
school, have their music business degree, or have been in the
music industry for decades, the fundamental role of a music
publisher is to make music make money. Songwriters write the
songs. But music publishers turn those songs into money, by
licensing them to those who want to put them on records or
ringtones, in a tv show, movie or advertisement, inside a
greeting card or a singing stuffed animal. That's a big job,
which entails five fundamental responsibilities:

1. Acquisition.
First, a publisher has to go out and acquire some music. This is
the area where a songwriter has a big advantage in the publishing
game. You don't have to go looking for tunes.

2. Exploitation
That's a good thing, not a bad one. It means getting songs into
situations where they can earn money.

3. Administration
Just like it sounds, publishing is paperwork. The publisher is
responsible for issuing licenses to people that want to use
music, negotiating the terms of those licenses, and registering
songs with collection societies like Harry Fox, ASCAP, BMI, and

4. Collection
This is a big one. Someone has to go out and get the money that
the songwriter has earned. Publishers make sure everyone gets

5. Protection
It's a jungle out there. Publishers register copyrights, and they
protect those copyrights from anyone who tries to use them
without permission.

Is it a lot of work? Definitely. Will it take some time away from
your writing? Probably. But if you want to enter the world of
professional songwriting, there is no other way but to learn how
to turn your songs into a business-and that's what music
publishing is all about. As you become more successful, you may
decide to partner with another publishing company to help lighten
the workload and increase your opportunities. But as a publisher
myself, I can tell you that fundamental publishing skills are a
songwriter's most important asset. The truth is, most successful
songwriters in any large music publishing company are those who
have learned to pitch their own material, develop and administer
their catalog, protect their copyrights, construct a solid
business team, and establish an industry presence for themselves
and their company.

Everyone else is doing it. Why not you? Don't wait any longer.
Starting your own publishing company is a proactive approach to
structuring your music career.


Eric Beall is Vice President of A&R at Shapiro Bernstein & Co.
and has held senior posts at Zomba Music, Jive Records and
Sony/ATV Music. He's worked with artists, writers and producers
ranging from the Backstreet Boys, NSYNC and Britney Spears, to
Stargate Productions, the Jonas Bros., and David Guetta. Eric is
also a songwriter and record producer, and the author of The
Billboard Guide To Writing and Producing Songs That Sell
Making Music Make Money (An Insider's Guide To Becoming Your Own
Music Publisher)
You can find more information on Eric at &

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" O N S I T E " F E A T U R E D A R T I C L E :

Curry and a Mantra for Music - by Trevor Krueger

I thought I'd found my ideal opportunity when a friend showed me
a restaurant with live music potential... but as ever, money gets
in the way of creativity.


Same As It Ever Was, Then And Now - by Mick Polich

Mick goes back in time to tie in schlock 1960's/1970's pop music,
Schlitz beer, and how some things never change for a listening
pop culture...


C l a s s i f i e d s & U s e f u l S e r v i c e s :


It's the "secret weapon" used by some of the winners of the
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Learn the one mistake even professional singers make, that drains
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The package includes 12 audio CDs (packed with 17 repeatable
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Visit for more details and start
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Expand your vocal range and improve your tone with The Deva
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I'm a professional male rock singer with 20 years experience. I
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Join the thousands of other singers who own Jeannie Deva's
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The Indie Bible shows you where to get your music reviewed, your
songs played, and your CDs sold. Now in its Seventh Edition, The
Indie Bible has 330 pages of valuable contacts and music-related

The 9th Edition of the Indie Bible contains:
4200 publications around the world that will REVIEW your CD!
3400 radio stations around the world that will PLAY your songs!
500 vendors and services that will help you to SELL your music!
200 sites where you can UPLOAD your band's MP3 files!
500 helpful resources and sites where you can PROMOTE your band!
52 articles that will help your career to MOVE forward rapidly!

Listings include web, e-mail and physical address, as well as
phone and fax numbers.

For details and to order online visit:

Inspired by the songwriter's journey, and through understanding
the principles talked about in "THE SECRET", this audio program
is specifically created for the songwriter based on those
findings. Through Power of Thought and Understanding the Law of
Attraction, you will have the tools, knowledge & ability to
create the thoughts, experiences, and circumstances to be a
phenomenally Successful Songwriter. Included is a guided
meditation that is as passionate as it is empowering!

Muse's Muse Visitors - Enter Promo Code: 42567 for Discount.

Limited Introductory Offer of $12.95 for Digital Download
Discounts for CD, and CD/Digital Download Combo shown on ordering


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This tool will revolutionize the way you write and organize your
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C o n t a c t I n f o & C r e d i t s :

Jodi Krangle ............................................. EDITOR
Kathryn Obenshain ...........................GRACIOUS PROOFREADER
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