Randy Poe has been the President of Leiber and Stoller Music Publishing since 1985. Leiber and Stoller wrote hundreds of hits for the rock & roll era, and their legacy lives on today. Poe's book entitled Stalking the Red Headed Stranger narrates a peculiar mission on which Poe embarks to pitch a song for one of the legendary founders of Leiber and Stoller, Jerry Leiber. The man he's tracking is on tour across Canada at the time, and his name is Willie Nelson.
Throughout the narrative, Poe interweaves career insights on how to pitch songs to music publishers and performers alike.
"If I find myself within earshot of a recording artist or a record producer - or anyone else who uses songs - I'm listening to what that person is saying, even though I'm smiling and nodding at the person who's actually talking to me... You have to use your ears to be able to hear a good song. Don't be afraid to use them to hear other people."
This may seem like common sense, but it's reassuring to hear it from someone whose climbed the industry ladder. It speaks on taking advantage of opportunity when you see it, acknowledging that impending uncertainty can lead you to climbing over a hurdle or staying in a restrained mindset.
This uncertainty creeps up a lot when I"m walking around town pitching music venues. Jake and I have gotten into the habit of walking into pretty much every restaurant or bar that we have a hunch would be into hosting live music and just asking after booking. Sometimes the response is no, but they suggest three or four other places in the area that do. These leads are priceless. It brings up the hunch at least 20% and does wonders for confidence. And the more often I do it, the easier it becomes to start. I guess that's the story with a lot of things in my life right now.
Don't give up,