MY VERY EXPENSIVE DEMO… AND HOW IT PAID OFF

Per the request of a few forum members, here is one of the demos I created for an animated musical I wanted to sell.

I had moved to LA from Bakersfield with no money and no connections. Eventually I worked my way up to being a talent agent. Over those years I saved up a nest egg to help send my son to college and to use for a rainy day.

For a number of reasons I instead elected to gambled my entire life’s saving ($125,000) to record orchestral and vocal demos for a animated musical I was writing along with the composer Megan Cavallari and lyricist David Goldsmith

I could have done it on synths and with session singers but I went with a 75-piece orchestra and stars.

I could have lost everything, but I wanted to give this my absolute best shot at succeeding without any nagging regrets of “if only…”

And I sincerely believed that it was going to workout (even in ways beyond what I ever expected. That is where faith kicked in. I stepped up to the table and went all- in.

And it worked.

We ended up selling it to Warner Bros a Geffen Films for $875,000 upfront against another million or so if it were made. And the number of major career doors it opened for me is immeasurable.

So, for those who might be interested, here is the opening number, IT’S MY DAY from my animated musical, PEPITA (aka SENORITA MATADOR).

This song sets up the world of bullfighting and its cast of characters. In this song we join the townspeople (the mayor, vendors, groupies, etc) of the sleepy villa of Mantilla as they anxiously await the arrival of the annual Bullfight El Grande.

Among the characters in the bullfighting world are the macho matadors and the roadie picadors.

On a hilltop overlooking the arrival of the bullfighting parade we meet young Pepita and her best friend and pet calf, Placido. Pepita mistakenly thinks all the commotion is to celebrate her 5th birthday.

The other folks we meet within this song are our villain, Hector the Evil Bullfight Promoter and his poor ranch hand, Manuel who is Pepita’s father and a former matador himself.

This is one of a batch of demos we recorded. The song was written by composer Megan Cavallari and lyricist David Goldsmith. I wrote the script and produced the song. Jeff Atmajian was the orchestrator. We recorded at Paramount Stage M in Los Angeles with 75 musicians. Tim Boyle was the engineer. Pepita is sung by Jodi Benson, best know as the voice of Ariel in THE LITTLE MERMAID.

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