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Richard Scotti
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IAC Prime Member


Richard Scotti

1/27/2015 7:22:36 AM

IAMA Winner makes it big
I don't enter contests any more but I think it's cool that Meghan Trainor was an IAMA winner.

I find the cost of entering contests is quite high but I guess if you have a song you really feel strongly about, it doesn't hurt to enter one song once and a while. I've won many awards
in contests including coming in 2nd in the John Lennon Songwriting contest but it never led to anything more. It's always nice and validating to get awards. The wall of my home studio is filled with them but they don't pay the bills! I still think, though, that if you can afford it, it's like chicken soup when you have a cold. It doesn't cure the cold but it has a soothing effect, Unfortunately that soup is quite expensive. Years ago the cost was $10 per song. Now it's $35 and up. I just choose to spend my money on more productive things. If you can afford to enter, go for it. In this business, ANY way to get your foot in the door is a good thing. But it's just not for me. Been there, done that. But it may be a viable options for others.


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1/27/2015 10:31:30 AM

Well, you know I have won a multitude of contests and have awards all over my studio also. Our paths have been very similar in regards to our songwriting accomplishments. The big difference may be the fact that I have gained a wealth of contacts and have had several songs signed due to my songwriting contest involvement. I have also made some money from the signings but not enough to buy a home in Hawaii (my dream) and just kick it for the rest of my life. Also, I have won a lot of cash and gear. Some I used and some I sold or gave away to some up and coming music artists in my family. It certainly does feel good to win and gain recognition from established producers and artists. I may never be a household name but no one will ever say I didn't give 100% of my effort. I love to compete because it seems to make me dig deeper and work harder. That in itself is worth the entry fee. Seeing as I am retired from everything else, staying motivated is my daily challenge. Big Congrats Meghan Trainer. The IAMA is one of the few I have never won. The John Lennon is another. So you got that one over me my musical brother!

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Hop On Pop

1/27/2015 1:50:52 PM

The only songwriting contest that I need to win is the one inside my head that says, "That's a killer tune, Todd!"

When I can go back and listen to my own song multiple times and still enjoy it.
That is the ultimate prize:
To know that I am listening to something that, before I plucked it out of the air, did not exist.

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Steve April

1/28/2015 9:21:25 AM

A real estate developer enjoys my music, and named two new streets after me, near where I reside, April Lane and April Place.

The core group of IACers are superstars, in my view. All the hype with these celebrity shows, are the trappings. The gems are here on IAC, forged in the crucible of experience, with artful finesse lol...

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Shoe City Sound

1/29/2015 8:43:21 AM

Oh my God Steve - streets names after you! That's incredible - congrats :)

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Richard Scotti

1/29/2015 3:03:12 PM

Stoneman ~ Everybody gets what they need in different ways. Perhaps I do things the hard way but I've enjoyed making money and a wealth of contacts through my hard work and networking here in NYC rather than trying to win things in contests. In the end the results are similar. The roads we took to get there are somewhat different.

I have singers from Styx, ELO, RENT and Beatlemania singing on my songs. It took me years to develop working relationships with these artists. But my intention is never to brag or compete or list all of my accomplishments. I try to let my music speak for itself.

The validation that I did receive through winning contests was worth it's weight in gold. So I never meant to imply that the contests were worthless to me. In fact, I was partly endorsing them. I was simply saying that it's like a game of chance to spend lot's of money on contests if you can't afford it. If you can afford to compete in contests, go for it. The more songs you enter the greater the chance of winning.
As I said, I don't really care who does what. I'm just saying what my experience has been, not advocating for any particular way of doing things or saying that my way is the right way or challenging anyone's methods or accomplishments.

If you are in a league of your own like the multi talented genius, Stoneman, then your chances of winning contests increases greatly. His is the exception to the rule and I applaud him for it but he is truly one of a kind, in the best possible way. His experience with contests is not the one that most people experience. And I totally respect his amazing ability to "do it all". Not everyone can do that. I can't record a song a day because I need other people to work with to do what I do.

As for contests, I never meant for my post to be controversial. I wasn't trying to compete with anyone or suggest that contests are good or bad or anything. I was just reporting a story that I thought might be of interest. I never meant to downgrade
IACers or anything like that. Of course I think we are the best but I was just saying that it's interesting when someone goes from winning a contest to actually getting a hit that everybody knows about. That doesn't mean I don't value the talents of IACers. I'm sometimes see people posting things praising this famous artist or that famous icon and I never say WTF? Let's talk about IAC artists! This site is somewhat like a music workshop, not a fan club.

I'll think carefully before I post again because it seems even the most innocent post can get folk's dander up. Perhaps I'll slip into the background like the rest of the crowd and just let 3 or 4 people do all the posting.

In the end, we all do the best we can and we find our rewards where we find them.
Everyone's a star in my opinion and everyone is equal. We're just different and that's a good thing! My first post was misunderstood and I suspect that this one will cause me equal headaches but I just had to get it off my chest. Everything I say is with love and respect but I understand how the written word can easily be misinterpreted.

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1/30/2015 8:11:49 AM

I didn't see anything controversial or derogatory in your first post. It seemed to me to be more of a matter of fact report that someone had reached the highest level of the industry (worldwide hit) by being discovered in a contest. There are several artists that have had similar success through contests. Usually the judges are people that have the ability to push your music up the chain of command in the industry. But for every one artist that makes it that way there are thousands who don't. Even the most hated avenues like American Idol, The Voice etc. have winners that never go any further after they have won. Many musicians have great angst about these shows because they don't believe in competition. I don't see it that way. I say that any avenue you find that may get you to the level you aspire to should be taken. Yeah, I know I may get some hate mail for saying that in an IAC forum. But the truth of the matter is that the industry is in shambles and millions of artists are having WTF moments about how to get there music heard and published to the masses. Publishers, labels and distributors are all scrambling trying to figure out the new digital music business model. As the imminent death of the CD becomes more and more visible, the industry continues to seek an answer to the ever dwindling money that use to flow freely but now lays dormant in a heap of unsold downloads and warehouses filled to the brim with physical CD's that no one wants to buy.

More over, I see the song contest as a gauge of where I am at from a songwriting point of view. I happen to love every song I write because I am personally involved in it from the beginning to end. They are like my musical children. But getting feedback from outside entities that have proven track records is worth its weight in gold for me. It gives me confirmation that a song is great or not so great. Granted that it is only someone else opinion. But any avenue you take towards success in the music industry will be rife with someone's opinion. As we all know, the ultimate opinion is the listening public.

I told a friend of mine one time that music should not be a competition. He is a multiple Grammy winning artist. His reply was that every artist on the planet is in competition whether they want to admit it or not. He said even the artist that plays at the local dive is in competition with artists that wish they could play there. There are so many levels of competition in the industry. Even people who don't aspire to make a living in music are in competition because we all want that one most important thing. TO BE HEARD! What good is a song that no one has heard but you? Well it may be good for you personally and you may be happy with being your own #1 fan. But some of us, people like me, are driven by accomplishments. I set benchmarks and plot my next course constantly. I always have a goal and a plan towards reaching it. I am not satisfied until I have reached my goals. I don't see anything wrong with that. I see that as a strength that has helped me financially, spiritually and emotionally. Basically, I want my shit to be heard by the masses. Preferably, before I die. It may or may not happen. But no one will ever say that I didn't give it my best effort.

So, my feeling is this, if winning a contest inspires you to keep upping the ante in regards to your career. Why not use that? Whatever it takes to reach your goal and still feel good about yourself, do that. If just writing and producing songs is good enough for you. By all means, have it your way. Self gratification is always subjective to self. There is no right or wrong on this. There is only your personal course. Only you can find your own little corner of fulfillment. I applaud that! Contests, contracts, contacts and the pursuit of impossible dreams is not for everyone. Some people are content with just being a songwriter and musician. Cool!

Richard, thank you so much for your kind words about my musical gifts. I fight hard every day to not allow my accomplishments in music to go to my head. That's why I enjoy hearing other artists work and to give them creative feedback. That's why I constantly come from a position of respect. Even though there are artists here that I have always supported but have never said a kind word about any of my music. I still give them respect and positive feedback. It is not about what they can do for me. It is all about being an encouragement to others. IAC is without a doubt the best talent pool of artists I have ever known. I have great respect for so many artists here. I think that greatness is not measured by how many hit records you have or how high on the Billboard charts your song may go. For me it is measured by how dedicated you are to your art and how self invested you are towards reaching your individual goals. Even if that goal is just to write a song and be blessed by what you have written. Cool!

Much Respect To All The Great Artists Here At IAC

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