Wednesday, February 7, 2007

A Little History—Part 3

It's been 6 years since I decided to quit the jingle biz and do what I always wanted to do in the first place. Despite our best efforts we haven't been able to get Pigeonholes a home in a theater even though we got raves from everyone that saw the show or DVD.

While all this has been going on, Dan Rather's ratings have been slip-sliding away thanks to some faux pas that chipped away at his credibility as an anchorman. But on September 8, 2004 Dan made the final fatal blunder. Just weeks before the presidential election, Dan had the proof that George Dubya had a shady military past. The documents turned out to be forgeries.

This, and the fact that Dan took a while to own up to it, was the nail in the coffin. He announced that he was leaving CBS. Bob Schiefer was to be his temporary replacement while they looked for someone permanent.

Holy crap! Would they keep the music? If not, what would I do. I've already spent a lot of cash on getting Pigeonholes to where it is. If I lose the CBS airplay checks, could I get a replacement income fast enough? Was this a blessing in disguise? The fire under my ass to finally get my career going?

The day came when Schiefer took over as anchorman. I watched with baited breath. Ya Ha! They kept the theme music! I got a reprise from the Governor! But how long will it last? Will they keep the theme when they get the new permanent anchorperson?

The ratings for the CBS Evening News started to climb. I got chills. Would this mean they might keep Bob and the theme. After all, they have many years of recognizability in that theme. It wreaks "AUTHORITY".

Then it was made official. CBS found their new savior. Katie Kouric. She would take over starting September of 2006. So, I mustered all my nerves into one ball and made a call to the director of the news program to ask if they were changing the music. They were. I asked if I could be in on the gang-bang. (Gang-bang is the term used when lots of composers are all submitting demos for the same project.) Being that I had written and produced music in the past for CBS (Connie Chung's Eye To Eye, Bryant Gumbel's Public Eye and others) he said sure.

I wrote several themes and sent them off. A few weeks went by and I found out they gave the theme to some young upstart. Some guy who scored Titanic and a few dozen other hit movies.

The shock finally set in. We'll have to sell our house and live off the profits while trying to get my CDs and shows to actually make money. At age 59 we were going to be starting over.

At least we had the house to sell.

(A few days after we decided to sell the house, all the newspaper and TV reports started running stories that the housing market bubble has finally burst. Oh well. We needed a challenge.)