Getting Up the Down Slide

Picture from
Picture from

Standing at the top of the slide on the playground, I was contemplating how I could go down it. Should I sit on a piece of wax paper or will a sheet of foil allow me to go faster on the metal? This slide was very tall and steep, and if you levered your body just right, you could fly off the end of the slide and land in the dirt far away from the end. What if we could boost the output and get further in the dirt?

Kids behind me were hollering for me to hurry up. I pulled out the wax paper, sat on it, and proceeded to go. With the heat, the wax melted, the paper stuck, and I had to clean it off. Everybody was soooo mad at me. But, foil was next and it was a smooth and fast ride. Next thing you know, everybody was bringing foil.

I have no idea where I got such an idea. Maybe I saw another kid sitting on a towel to protect their backside against the hot metal and a spark happened. I’ve forgotten.

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But one thing I do know is this: I was soon bored with the whole idea of how to go faster. The bigger challenge was how to get up the slide from the bottom. How could I start at the bottom and get to the top of the slide itself without using the ladder on the back?

I was not the only one thinking about this great challenge. Every kid was trying to figure it out, giving the ascent a running start. I watched as one after the other attempted to make it to the top, only to slip, fall, and slide back down in frustration out of reach of their goal. Sounds a lot like the music business these days, doesn’t it?

I myself tried those methods and found they did not work for me either. What were we doing wrong? It wasn’t the amount of effort that was lacking. It wasn’t speed. What was the problem?

Studying others’ failures, I finally found where the problem was. I gave my method a try, and it worked.

The use of hands at just the right time was the key. Apply hands too early, momentum was slowed. Apply hands to late, not enough strength to regain momentum. So, just before momentum equaled gravitation pull, I grabbed the sides and gave one quick yank. That allowed my shoes to dig in on the next two steps, escaping gravity, and propelling me to the top. Everybody quickly caught on and next thing you know, going up the down slide was old hat.

My personality is still the same: I identify the most basic and important challenge to success, find ways to work within those confines, teach it, and then move forward. I’m doing that now with the music business. I invented, a way to document ownership of a song through a third-party validator, and yet retain control of your data.

But I could not invent it until I stood still and asked, “What is everybody doing wrong?”

You see, those kids going up the slide were doing many things right, but the most important thing they needed to do was so simple nobody thought of it, and their failures kept mounting. Nobody found the solution, to the slide problem, that is, until I stood still and watched.

In the music business today the thing everybody wants is worldwide distribution. Worldwide distribution is so easy as to be ridiculous. It’s like climbing up the ladder, sitting on a piece of foil, and WHOOSH! 


On the slide, if you don’t prepare for the landing, you will land face first in the dirt. Not good.

In the same manner, without preparing for worldwide distribution, your catalog will not be yours. The preparation involved is all about proving you own the works you are uploading to digital aggregators/distributors.

I’m sorry to say, but just about everybody is not doing the most basic steps to protect and defend their property. They make basic assumptions about organizations who say they have the best interests of songwriters at heart, when it is an open secret they make a practice of not keeping the data accurate.

They allow too many hands into the pot and have no checks and balances. Furthermore, if you disagree with their record keeping, they want you to provide proof they are wrong.

WHERE IS YOUR PROOF? I bet you don’t have it. 

So all the effort and technique and speed you’ve got to get your career going will not do you any good if you are missing the key component: Documentation you solely control.

If you are a songwriter or song publisher, I encourage you to put into your production and creative workflow. Everybody will benefit. Yeah, they’ll scream a holler for a bit, but remember…


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