Nashville Songpluggers Join Forces for Better Song Placements
By Randy Rudder
Provided to Damn Good Tunes as featured content
© 2012 CMA Close Up® News Service / Country Music Association®, Inc.
At 5 PM on a balmy October afternoon, in the offices of Harlan Howard Songs just south of Nashville’s Music Row, 15 female publishing executives are sitting in a semicircle around Sony Music Nashville artist Joanna Smith. In the center of the room is an assortment of hors d’oeuvres, cheeses and beverages, but no one seems to be indulging. Smith is pensive as she listens to the first verse and chorus of two songs from each publisher, responding with comments such as “pass,” “kinda cute,” “not for me,” “nice groove” or “hold that one for sure.”
All of this is an exercise in the art of group song pitching, in this case by an informal assembly of pluggers and publishers who have dubbed themselves “Chicks with Hits.”
The Chicks are among the pioneers of the group pitch concept. “We did this because at the time we were, and still are for the most part, independent publishers, and we couldn’t get meetings with the big artists,” said Kim Jones of Mighty Kimmy Jo Music. “Some of us were not able to participate in ongoing plugger groups that were already there, so we just thought, ‘Why don’t we do an all-female group?’ The idea was that since everyone in this group has such great publishing experience and is great at what they do, we thought we could get to more artists as a group than by doing it individually, which we have done.”
Abbe Nameche was the other founder of the Chicks with Hits network. “When I worked at DreamWorks, Kim and I got together and hatched this idea,” she said. “We hand-selected the members and started rolling. It’s basically just one-stop shopping.”
Each of the group’s meetings is geared specifically to a particular artist’s project. Members are notified ahead of time exactly what the producer is looking for.
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