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The Frettie Journal
A collection of interviews, updates, tips and resources for songwriters.

Pitching Your Songs Is Like Playing Guitar.

Tips & Resources by Brent Baxter, Pro Songwriter on February 07, 2018

Remember when you first picked up the guitar? It was a mystery. How do those great guitar players do it? Then you watch a YouTube video or pick up a Mel Bay book (showing my age) and it tells you how to form your left hand into G, C, & D. The first time you strum a clean G, it’s magic!

And that magic quickly becomes pretty dang painful.

Your soft, virgin fingertips haven’t built up their calluses yet, and it feels like they’re going to split open any minute. (And Heaven have mercy if your first guitar has high action.)

But if you play frequently enough and don’t quit, your fingers will toughen up. Making those chords won’t hurt. That high E string won’t be the razor blade it used to be. Now you’re not quite the beginner you were. Now you have a little “pro” about you. (I may focus on lyrics now, but there was a time I earned some calluses on an old acoustic.)

Learning guitar can teach you a valuable lesson about pitching your songs to publishers and labels. And that lesson is:

You need calluses.

If you’re like me, your first meeting with a publisher is full of excitement, hope and big possibilities. Well, that’s how it feels on your end, anyway. From the publisher’s perspective, you’re probably just the next person through their door- a stranger who may have potential but probably doesn’t have a hit to play that day.

The publisher is probably right. And it hurts.

Then you get another meeting, either with the same person or with someone else. Again, publishing deal offers don’t drop out of the sky like confetti at the end of your song. The disappointment stings.

But, over time, you build up your calluses and it doesn’t hurt like it did. Having someone pass on your song will never feel good, but you’re able to take passes in stride and move on to the next song.

Like playing guitar, if you stick with it and don’t give up, you’ll be rewarded for it.

If YOU would like to play your song for a legit music publisher, Songwriting Pro's next Play For A Publisher event is coming right up! Our guest is Courtney Allen of BMG Nashville. Courtney works closely with hit songwriters Travis Meadows, Wynn Varble, Lucie Silvas, and more. If YOU have the songs, SHE knows what to do with them!

P4P Courtney Allen


God bless,


PS- Thanks for stopping by Frettie! I appreciate it. As a matter of fact, I want to give you a special little something just for your visit. It's my FREE ebook "Think Like A Pro Songwriter," and it reveals valuable I-learned-it-the-hard-way-so-you-don't-have-to tips to help you succeed at the art, craft and business of songwriting. You can download it at

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