Friday, February 4, 2011

DSA E-News #116, Feb. 2011

Hello Songwriter,

I'm sitting here in the Dallas deep freeze trying to stay warm and hoping that the rolling blackout does not roll my direction.

The song contest is open for entries through March 31. I had so much trouble with the formating on the old page, that I had to cry uncle and do a new page. I hope it is easier to read.

Give Me A Break did not cast, I'm sad to say. We only had one male audition and there are six male roles. We are planning to reschedule for Summer 2012. Hopefully there will not be as many conflicts with other productions and we can cast the show.

The 53rd Annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA is airing Sunday, February 13th. We've been listening to the nominees and the meetings and doing our own voting. See the list of Texas nominees in the articles section below.

Our good friend, Marty Rendleman has a new book, Singing Your Way To Stardom, released this month about the music business. Marty was LeAnn Rimes manager who got her a record deal in Nashville. The book will be a great read. For more information, go to:

There is a lot going on this month. Check out the events listings. Wow! This newsletter is long. I'm sorry, but there is just so much stuff to do and read. It took me forever to put it together. Guess I needed the ice and snow to keep me focussed. Also, thanks for all your emails and comments.

HELP A STUDENT OUT: Take the survey
"My name is Celeste Debro, a conflict management graduate student at Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN, and I would like to conduct a PRO survey with the members or subscribers belonging to your organization to get more information on how they recognize conflict and if mediation could become a larger option for dispute resolution within the music industry.  I feel as though this survey is very instrumental in understanding how different approaches could be brought about within the music industry for handling conflict. This survey is the start of my externship, and if allowed I would love to devote some of my hours, free of charge, to your organization based on the results of this survey.  This survey is electronic and the results would come directly to me.  If you would like to see the survey, or if you would like more information please do not hesitate to contact me. If you cannot assist me with this request, please refer me to someone who is able to do so. Thank you for your time.
Celeste D. Debro "
Conflict Management Student
Lipscomb University

Not a DSA member? Then you've missed the musings via our member yahoo group of our DSA Prez, Buck Morgan. Catch up with what's going on here:

Dallas Songwriters is on Facebook. Go on Facebook and LIKE us.

QUICK LOOK CALENDAR OF DSA MONTHLY EVENTS - put this in your bookmark.

Happy Valentine's Day!

1. ANNUAL SONG CONTEST - Deadline March 31.
Dallas Songwriters Association 2011 Song Contest
Now in its 21st year, The DSA 2011 Song Contest is one of the longest running international song contests for amateur songwriters. Offering over $5,000 in cash and prizes this year, the DSA has EIGHT categories in all. See Contest Rules for eligibility. Accepting Submissions 12/15/2010 through 3/31/2011. Pick your category and enter today! 
  • Country
  • Pop/Rock/R&B/Alternative
  • Americana/Folk/Bluegrass
  • Christian/Inspirational
  • Love Songs/Easy Listening
  • Children's/Novelty
  • Singer-Songwriter
  • Instrumental

    Click here
     for more info about this contest, and for more information about joining DSA (membership not required to enter contest).

    Click here
     to view a list of frequently asked questions. 

2009-10 SONG CONTEST - 
Winners were announced April 15 on the website and at the Dallas International guitar show.
See John Nitzinger and Tradition Guitars presenting the grand prize at the show.

See the press release on the song contest winners:

Get a hard copy of the April issue of Songwriters Notes with a list of winners and read about grand prize winner, Lanny Sherwin.

See the winners, be sure to scroll to the bottom for Roy Elkins comments on the cream of the crop.

Semifinalists were posted on the song contest website on March 15th.

Mimi Balkey won the drawing for the ipod.



See past 2008 winners.

Here 2008 winning songs in a series of three podcasts at:

2. DSA MEETINGS - Jan. 11 - 

David Banning -  Getting Your Songs Cuts and NOT Living in Nashville. 

Former DSA member, David has cuts, The Horse That Nobody Can Ride and Baby I'll Come Back To You, on Joey + Rory's Billboard charted Album #2 . Rory is also a former DSA member. David met Rory and a DSA showcase.

Free to Members
$5 for visitors
Sign in and Networking begins at 6:30
Announcements at 7PM
Program about 7:30
Song Critiques follow - Members only may enter for $5

Future Programs:
March: Tom Prasada-Rao
DSA T-SHIRTS $10 at the meeting (you must ask me for the special) or online by mail $15
MONDAY SONG SWAPS for peer critique
Song Swap Workshops
Monthly 7:30-10 PM
Free, Visitors Welcome
Where songwriters perform their songs for peer review. Bring your guitar and a few lyric sheets. This is like an old fashioned guitar pull with comments between songs.

FIRST MONDAY in East Dallas
Half Price Books, 5803 E Northwest Hwy Dallas, TX 75231-6519 (214) 379-8000
Roger Russell, Jame Pappas coordinating.
We'll be in the Community Room at the back left in the building.

Tino's at Collin Creek Mall- Steve Sullivan, coordinator.
Tinos Mexican Restaurant Collin Creek Mall, Plano, Tx 972 2572

EVERY 3RD THURSDAY - 7:00pm to 9:00pm

TEXAS SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND at Sandstone Cellars Winery Showcase & Open Mic in Mason Texas.  
HOURS 6-9PM 211 San Antonio Street, Mason, TX 76856
Our season opener is on St. Patricks Day and shows will be on the 3rd Thursday of each month starting in March.

Guidelines for our stars @ Texas Songwriters in the Round shows:
* All original set of 45 minutes
* A professional commercially released CD with some airplay and press.

We allow any songwriter to come be part of the TSR in the Round, with one star per month! If you'd like to come out and join in as a rounder I can make sure you have a place for the night! To Showcase contact: Jeri Alice

Balcony Club First Tuesday Showcase & Open Mic 6 - 9PM  1821 Abrams Road, Dallas, Tx (In the Lakewood Theater) Three 30 minute showcases and last hour open mic. To Showcase ontact Lisa Byrn

4. LYRIC CONTEST - Next deadline postmarked March 31th or enter online.


CARDBOARD DADDY by Richard Keller, Orlando, FL
SOMETHIN' BOUT SOUTHERN GIRLS by Richard Keller, Orlando, FL
LET'S GAMBLE ON US by Larry Dodge, Dallas, Tx
GRANDPA (WHY YOU DRIVE SO SLOW?) by Tom Biles, Keller, Tx


Next Lyric Contest Deadline is March 30th, 2010 for Spring Lyric Contest
Entry fee is $10
Please see lyric contest webpage for details.

April 2010 Hardcopy issue of Songwriters Notes has Summer and Fall 2009 winners posted.

October 2009 Hardcopy issue of Songwriters Notes has Fall 2008 & winter/spring 2009 Lyric contest winning songs listed:

The 2011 Board of Directors met on January 23rd to elect officers and plan for the year according the the wishes of the membership's input at the January 11th meeting. 

Wanna get involved? Become a committee member. It's fun!
To view a list of the 2011 Officer and Directors and Committees go to this link:

If you are not a DSA Member, you missed these tips sent out through our yahoo group:

* Publisher looking for Childrens songs
* Artists/Producers looking for original material for recording artists
* Major Brand X (To be disclosed at a later time) Seeks Independent artist for music campaign.
* Where to get your cd reviewed
* Music related job listing
* Film Licensing Co. seeking instrumental music
* Cheap and free tickets - Free tickets to selected Winspear Opera House events.

Lyricists are invited to co-write with music writers by submitting your lyric through the member yahoo group.

WELCOME NEW MEMBERS: Guy Rourk, Thomas Cavazos, Robin Hughes, Larry Dodge, Tonye Scott, Joe Milton, Shelby Cook, Mina Shamsa, Robert Montgomery, Tracy Merchant, Jan Osborne, Tim Schramm, Kevin Mountcastle, Brent Benton, Pru Gilmore, Timberly Padden won a fee membership in the guitar show drawing.. Tim Phillips, Pru Potter, Joanna Endley, Robert Tenorio, and song contest winners Ward Parker, Eric Christensen, Chris Trentham, Scott Tonkinson, Lisa Torres, Noel Cohen, David Spence, Edward Turton, Lauren Smith, Lanny Sherwin, John Watilo Louie Cate, Claire Ulanoff, Karyna Cruz, Peter Bacsalmasi, Bernadette Conant, Roger Kaye, Matt Dahan, Dom Stasi, Sinem Varoglu, John Visconti, Jaime Leopold,

THANK YOU FOR RENEWING YOUR MEMBERSHIP: Steve Erickson, Mimi Balkey, Jason Winford, Morri Hartgraves, Roger Russell, Nancy Rynders, Donna Scoggins. Ken Golden, Brook Malouf, Bill Honker, Scott Fant, Ed Willians, Tom ThomasTrevor Dahen, Butch Schindel, Bob Paterno, Ian Dickson, Jackie Doss, Mary Guthrie, CB Luce

TIME TO RENEW: The following members owe dues:

JULY: Michael Fredde, Dave Dalton, Dave Sanchez
SEPT: Don Wall
OCT: Reagan Redfern, Morri Hartgraves, Paul Penrod, Billy Roberson, George Ross, Rod Ballou, Stephen Blackwell, Curtis Goho, Erick Bunch, Robert Charles
NOV: Jose Cantu, Michael Roth, Cheryl Anderson, Justin Marler
DEC: Jeff Sharp, Genell Kelso, Michael Brandon and Krystal Pinkins. 
JAN: Sharon Pisors, Nathan Alan Toon, Baylee Kuss, Adrienne Weitzel
PLEASE RENEW THIS MONTH: Donna Lisa, Drew Ash, James Pappas, Will Hopkins, Trevor Dahlen, Chris Rucker, and Rachel Sanchez Lonon.

Renew your membership online,
You'll find the link to the store on the panel to the right

(Each month we have a workshop at our monthly meeting on the 1st Monday, 3rd Monday and 2nd Tuesday. see item 3 above.)

Kim Copeland & Susan Tucker
Songwriter’s Workshop
Sunday, February 20, 2011
1PM - 5PM
$10 cash at the door
RVSVP to Susan Tucker
Sponsored by Dallas Songwriters Association
and the Collin County Songwriters Association
Love and War in Plano -
601 E. Plano Pkwy
(NE Intersection of US75 Central Expressway)
Plano, TX Thanks to Roger Russell for coordinating the place.


PLAY FOR PUBLISHERS WORKSHOP - writers who want to get songs recorded in the Nashville Country market are invited to apply now for this workshop hosted by Barbara Cloyd. Sixteen writers will be chosen to present their songs to six publishers who come, two at a time, to listen to songs and give feedback. It will be held at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville Feb 24 - 26. Application deadline is Jan 17th. For complete details, visit .

7. EVENTS- Featuring local and worldwide events of the songwriting community including, seminars, conferences, and showcases.

5 Songwriter 101, Center, Tx
12 Barbe, Buck, David Cline and Randy Brown play a fundraiser, Saturday Night Dinner & Show benefiting the Theater Group,  Wills Point, Tx RSVP Bonnie Reichel
13 Grammy Awards, LA
13 Monthy Workshop NSAI Houston, League, City
16-20 Folk Alliance, Memphis, TN
15 Ready For Radio, Austin Tx - free
14-16 New Music Seminar, LA
19 Kim Copeland, Houston, Tx
19-20 Amigo Nashville Guitar Show
20 Kim Copeland Workshop, Plano, Tx
21 Where Creativity and Commerce Meet, Austin Tx - free
24  Protecting Your Most Valuable Asset - Your Art, Austin, Tx - free
24-26 Play For Publishers
25 From Gospel To Hip Hop, Austin Tx

9-13 Canadian Music Week, Toronto, CAN
16-20 SXSW, Austin, Tx
18-19 Austin Guitar Show, Austin,Tx
20 Largest Guitar Jam Ever, Austin, Tx
24-27 Rivers Rutherford Songcrafting Seminar, Nashville, TN
29-April 1 Tin Pan South, Nashville, TN,

1 - 2 Spring Training, Nashville, TN
15-17 Guitar Show, Dallas
28-30 ASCAP I Create Music EXPO
29 - May 1  Jazz Fest, New Orleans,

5-8 Jazz Fest, New Orleans,
20-22 Wildflower Fest, Richardson,



Comprehensive VENUE LIST - compliments of Uncle Calvins


Dallas Morning News Guide Live Music Listing ( hit search after opening the page)

8. Featured Articles:
PREZ SEZ: Tune in to DSA President, Buck Morgan's, musings and DSA goings on.

44 Texas born-or-based acts receive a total of 55 GRAMMY nominations

The Eagles on BBC

VIDEO: Duct Tape – Proof Music Can Be Made With Anything
By Kyle Bylin -- Real men (and women) don't need instruments to make music.
The 13 Biggest Songs of All Time (That Feature Lots of Whistling)...
By Paul Resnikoff [Paul missed Guy Mitchell's, "Singing the Blues" featuring a happy little bouncy, bouncy whistling accompaniment to expressions of utter disbelief and despair by someone who had just been dumped ... It's the greatest mismatch of arrangement to lyric in the history of recorded music.... spent nine weeks at #1 on the U.S. Billboard chart from December 8, 1956 - February 2, 1957. Mitchell's version was also number 1 in the U.K. for three (non-consecutive) weeks in early 1957.. ]
Know Your Genre
By Paul Lamere -- Not sure what the difference is between Black Metal or Death Metal? Looking for the quintessential nerdcore track? Confused about how 3rd wave ska relates to ska? Check out Know your Genre for all the answers. [Includes audio samples.]
The Man Who Recorded the World: A Biography of Alan Lomax by John Szwed - Review
By Sean O'Hagan -- Alan Lomax brought stars such as Lead Belly and Woody Guthrie to the world's attention. But was he really the selfless pioneer that this biography claims?
Laurel Canyon's 'Troubadours'
By Amy Kaufman -- Forty years ago, Laurel Canyon, the tree-lined neighborhood perched high in the hills above Los Angeles, was home to a collective of artists who wrote some of their most famous music while living there. That's the story they and others tell in "Troubadours: The Rise of the Singer-Songwriter," (Includes Trailer) a documentary that centers on Carole King and James Taylor, their role in the singer-songwriter movement and the Troubadour club in West Hollywood, where they launched their careers. [Thanks to Michelle Kay for the link.]
How and Why Every Song Can Be an App
By Eliot Van Buskirk -- Music should be heard and not seen, a friend once said. But what happens when music players have large color screens, sophisticated controls, processors, and connections to the internet? Music becomes an app — or at least it can, where such an approach makes sense.
Bob Paterno's blog Making Music Making Money

Glossary of Terms Used in the Music Industry
Compiled by Mario F. Gonzalez, Esq.

Barbe McMillen's blog, The Craft of Songwriting

Let's look at some tools and formulas help you build similes.

What Makes a Hit Song? Science Tries to Find the Answer
By Eliot Van Buskirk -- What do hit songs have in common over the years, and how are they changing? And what does it all say about who we were, and who we're becoming?
Historic Kansas Cabin an Elemental Part of Folk-Song History
By Beccy Tanner -- "That song is the most famous cowboy song in the world," said Orin Friesen at the Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper near Benton ... But in the fall of 1872, Brewster Higley's thoughts were simply written in poem form on a scrap of paper (and) tucked it away in one of his books..
"This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession"
By ACN Staff -- "In this groundbreaking union of art and science, rocker-turned-neuroscientist Daniel J. Levitin explores the connection between music - its performance, its composition, how we listen to it, why we enjoy it - and the human brain."
Review: Art of Writing Lyrics
By Scott G - The G-Man -- You cannot teach someone to write good song lyrics. That's just how I feel. And yet, I kind of changed my mind after reading "The Art of Writing Great Lyrics" by Pamela Phillips Oland. ...

Online Thesaurus and Rhyming Dictionary

9. Song and Talent Contests
See contest details at:
Song, Lyric and Fiddle Contests

A comprehensive list of Song Contests compliments of

10. Songwriting Resources
Links to websites about songwriting, performance, music industry.

DSA Book Store - reviews, links, lists of recommended reading, and what's in the DSA Library.

11. BEST SONGS of the 2nd Tuesday Meeting

JAN 2011
Ask Your Heart by Vern Dailey
Beautiful For Just A Moment by Guy Rourk

Read about 2009 Songwriter of the Year, Vern Dailey:

Download a pdf hard copy of the Oct 2009 Songwriters Notes with 2008 best songs of the meeting winners announced.

To view past winners go to the Best Songs blog.
To hear the winners go to our myspace page.
Did you know that A and R reps from labels and music publishers are listening to our Myspace page each month?

Did you know???  DSA held two song contests for active military and the Cds of the winning songs, Songs From the Soul of Service Vols. 1 and 2 are available online at:

Tribute to our fallen soldiers from DFW at our Podomatic site:
You Know Me Tribute to Fallen
Read the latest story about this years winners

DSA depends on your support.
Giving Rocks!
While it never hurts to remind you that DSA is a non-profit organization (and so your contributions are tax-deductible) -  this year it means so much more. We're proud to be celebrating our 20th Anniversary as a non-profit. DSA has been an organized songwriter group since 1985 and became a non-profit in 1990.

Your gift
 enables us to meet our mission:

We exist to enhance the overall personal growth and professionalism of our members through the following means:

• Provide a practical and realistic orientation for songwriters/artists on common standards and expectations of the music industry.
• Sharpen required competencies for excelling in the song writing profession.
• Serve as a forum for networking among peers and with industry experts to generate career opportunities.
• Serve as a non-political advocate for songwriters and performers in a liaison with peer organizations throughout the country.

Our programs created to meet our mission goals are: a monthly newsletter, workshops, critique sessions, showcases, contests, networking opportunities and community service.
If you like what we do, and want to help us keep doing it, please make a contribution today. Gifts of all sizes are meaningful and appreciated.

Donations are welcome year round. 
Thanks for reading this far. If you have any suggestions for the newsletter, please let me know. Follow me on Twitter @barbemcmillen. Give me a tweet.
Songwriter Notes
Founding President Emeritus, DSA