Recording - November 2009 - 45

NOVEMBER 2009 TAXI Road Rally 2008 Major Label A&R Panel Part 1, moderated by Michael Laskow PANELIST S Sherrill Blackman – Music Row Magazine’s Song plugger of the Year for 2004, 2005, and 2006. He’s a three-term past president of the Nashville Publishers Network, co-founder of the Independent Pluggers Association and the 2002 recipient of the Tennessee Songwriter Association Award for Lifetime Contributions to the Music Business. Tony Ferguson – VP, A&R, A&M/Geffen/ Interscope. Discovered and signed No Doubt. 25 million CDs sold. Brian Howes – Award-winning songwriter, Grammy-nominated producer, record label executive, and publisher. Right now his co-write of “Light On,”David Cook’s first single, is burning up the charts. Rev Theory, the first signing on Brian’s joint venture with Interscope, Van Howes Records, is making waves and starting to break. He also produced Hinder’s multiplatinum-selling debut, Extreme Behavior, as well as their highly anticipated sophomore release, which is just about to hit stores. Darius Jones – Senior director of A&R, Capitol Records, Los Angeles. He’s worked with the likes of Ice Cube, T.I., Chris Brown, Snoop Dog, Fabulous, Ne-Yo and Faith Evans, among many others. His credits include J. Holiday, Dem Franchise Boys, Chingy, Mims, LeToya Luckett, Coach Carter, Lil Zane and Javier. Good morning to all. Sherrill, there’s probably not a person who writes Country music in this room who wouldn’t give up a body part to have a song plugger with your reputa- The panelists enjoy a hearty laugh during the panel. From left to right; Sherrill Blackman, Tony Ferguson, Brian Howes, and Darius Jones. tion and clout represent them. You’ve been Nashville Plugger of the Year for several years running; you represent just a handful of the very very top writers in Nashville. How hard is it to get a cut with a top-shelf major label County artist—for anybody to get a cut? Even though your clients are the crème de la crème, how hard is it to get a cut? Sherrill: It’s tough. It’s always been tough, but in the end the great songs are always going to win out. I think the thing that frustrates my writers and me, is just how long it’s taking. Most of the cuts I’m getting are songs that are five and six, seven, eight years old. But they are fabulously great songs and that’s what makes people want to record them. A lot of the time it’s about market timing. Sometimes I think that writers have trouble comprehending the market cycles and how songs fit into timing and cycles and that sort of thing. The thing that I do is that I’m able to remember a lot of facts-songs that are old—you know, 10, 15 years old—so that when the time comes up and somebody requests something specific, I’ve got it tucked away in my brain, I pull it out, pitch it and, hopefully, get it cut. How many writers do you represent at any one point in time? Sherrill: I keep my roster real small and exclusive. No more than six writers, and they’re all very highprofile hit writers. They’ve all written tons of #1s, with gold and platinum albums. That’s what it takes for me to be able to walk in and be taken seriously. Now, that’s not to say I don’t work with unknown writers. Usually what I do when I’m working with an unknown writer—not as a plugger but as a publisher—I will slide their stuff for the people that I’m playin’ songs for. What percentage of the songwriters who move to Nashville and have become pros have had real cuts before they got off the bus? What percentage of the big-time writers get at least two cuts a year? Sherrill: Well, you’ve got some guys at the top end, like a Craig Wiseman or a Rivers Rutherford and some of those guys, are probably getting tons of cuts a year—anywhere from 10 to 15 to 20 cuts a year. Then, some people aren’t getting any cuts a year. It’s hard to give to a percentage. Continued on page 47

Recording - November 2009

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recording - November 2009

Recording - November 2009
Fade In
Contents
Talkback
Fast Forward
Les Paul Speaks
Cakewalk SONAR V-Studio 700
The Hybrid Guitar Recording Method—A Modern Way of Tracking Serious Tones, Part 1
Radial JDX and Phazer
Shure SM27 and SM137 Microphones
Eventide PitchFactor
Recording’s Guitar Column
Lexicon I•ONIX U42S RecordingInterface
Recording’s Showcase of Sounds
Readers’ Tapes
Vibesware GR-1 Guitar Resonator
BOSS ME-70 Guitar Multiple Effects
Line 6 BackTrack and BackTrack + Mic
Advertiser Index
Fade Out
Recording - November 2009 - Recording - November 2009
Recording - November 2009 - Cover2
Recording - November 2009 - 1
Recording - November 2009 - Fade In
Recording - November 2009 - 3
Recording - November 2009 - Contents
Recording - November 2009 - 5
Recording - November 2009 - Talkback
Recording - November 2009 - 7
Recording - November 2009 - Fast Forward
Recording - November 2009 - 9
Recording - November 2009 - 10
Recording - November 2009 - 11
Recording - November 2009 - Les Paul Speaks
Recording - November 2009 - 13
Recording - November 2009 - 14
Recording - November 2009 - 15
Recording - November 2009 - Cakewalk SONAR V-Studio 700
Recording - November 2009 - 17
Recording - November 2009 - 18
Recording - November 2009 - 19
Recording - November 2009 - 20
Recording - November 2009 - 21
Recording - November 2009 - 22
Recording - November 2009 - 23
Recording - November 2009 - The Hybrid Guitar Recording Method—A Modern Way of Tracking Serious Tones, Part 1
Recording - November 2009 - 25
Recording - November 2009 - 26
Recording - November 2009 - 27
Recording - November 2009 - 28
Recording - November 2009 - 29
Recording - November 2009 - 30
Recording - November 2009 - 31
Recording - November 2009 - Radial JDX and Phazer
Recording - November 2009 - 33
Recording - November 2009 - Shure SM27 and SM137 Microphones
Recording - November 2009 - 35
Recording - November 2009 - Eventide PitchFactor
Recording - November 2009 - 37
Recording - November 2009 - Recording’s Guitar Column
Recording - November 2009 - 39
Recording - November 2009 - Lexicon I•ONIX U42S RecordingInterface
Recording - November 2009 - 41
Recording - November 2009 - Recording’s Showcase of Sounds
Recording - November 2009 - 43
Recording - November 2009 - 44
Recording - November 2009 - 45
Recording - November 2009 - 46
Recording - November 2009 - 47
Recording - November 2009 - 48
Recording - November 2009 - 49
Recording - November 2009 - Readers’ Tapes
Recording - November 2009 - 51
Recording - November 2009 - Vibesware GR-1 Guitar Resonator
Recording - November 2009 - 53
Recording - November 2009 - BOSS ME-70 Guitar Multiple Effects
Recording - November 2009 - 55
Recording - November 2009 - Line 6 BackTrack and BackTrack + Mic
Recording - November 2009 - Advertiser Index
Recording - November 2009 - 58
Recording - November 2009 - 59
Recording - November 2009 - 60
Recording - November 2009 - 61
Recording - November 2009 - 62
Recording - November 2009 - 63
Recording - November 2009 - Fade Out
Recording - November 2009 - Cover3
Recording - November 2009 - Cover4
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