Hello to all! This is my "MakeMusic" story:
I'm new here and not a very serious contributor, relatively speaking. A few years ago I wrote a novelty tune entitled "Wait'll Next Year". I scribbled it out with pen and ink, copyrighted it, then put it "in the closet" so to speak. Did nothing with it, in other words.
I conceived the song after years of watching the Minnesota Golden Gopher football team field inept squads year after year, all the while consistently promoting the next year-to- come as a potential win-loss breakthrough.
Then, recently while watching the NCAA basketball tourney, I started thinking about that tune. I had found MakeMusic by that time and was amidst the work of putting the tune in a more presentable form when I heard Brent Mussburger, TV sports guy, say "Wait 'til next year" about a team that had just lost their game. To me, that was confirmation enough!
I had looked, via Google, for any programs available for putting it on paper. I had heard from friends that such existed but I'd never looked into it because there are so many creative people who write songs. Seems to me that the late Steve Allen was said to have composed more than a thousand songs.
I decided to take a shot at it, anyway.
Viola! I came across MakeMusic, tried it, found it fascinating and easy, then put the tune on paper - words and notes - first via Finale Notepad, then as an upgrade to Print Music. I'm working on a second song now. I got increasingly excited over the possibilities.
My objective has been to get the tune to an agent or publishing company that might get it to the market place, knowing up front that the likelihood of success is pretty limited.
Following a 'normal' course, I went back to Google and looked around. I stumbled across 'song contests'. Then I saw the Paramount Group, International website. The graphic presentation looked strong. Nicely laid out, prominent performing artist name droppings, etc.
I finished work on the tune and sent Paramount the $20 'enrollment fee' for a contest scheduled to begin April 1, 2009.
On April 3rd I got Paramount Group's reply. The letter was dated March 31st - the first of several red flags. (The 'contest' wasn't scheduled to begin until April First). "Congratulations! You've already won the Director's Award and are now in consideration for the Grand Prize and First Prize Awards". See contract below.
A bit farther down the page I read the list of fees and charges for the services of musicians along with the costs for recording studio services. The lowest of the recording fees is $189. The range rises to $489 for a vocalist and seven piece band. A 5% royalty fee is charged on sales.
I didn't find those dollar amounts outrageous, having played trumpet professionally in groups ranging from trios and quartets to twelve piece dance bands.
The phrase "return the contract ASAP" raised a red flag, but I still was not overly alarmed. In total there are five or six 'scam indicators' in the letter. Enough to cause "caution".
Thankfully, Google is to curiosity as Webster's is to spelling.
A little research via Google showed that Paramount Group, International's services have been purchased by many and found lacking by at least a few. I put the Paramount file on hold. I have since found others of a comparable style.
My question: Is there a way to get one single novelty tune to a recognized performer wthout going through all this nonsense?
I won't be shocked if it's a moot point in the opinion of readers here, in view of what I've written here, but I'm open for suggestions, if any exist.