My item was rejected with just "This item does not meet the general commercial quality standard"

Hello. I submitted a piano piece which was rejected with the laconic answer in the title. Frankly, I wrote it in MIDI and “rendered” the sound through my digital piano, and thus I was afraid it might sounds more mechanical then it should be. Thing is, they didn’t give any actual point in their rejection. If the composition itself is simply not to the staff’s liking, I need to know that a different recording of this would likely be rejected as well. If their problem is mostly with the tone and quality of the “performance”, I need to know that perhaps a better reproduction can be submitted and accepted.

Here is what I submitted (I don’t have a SoundCloud yet so this is just some random MP3 host):

What are your thoughts? Is their reply supposed to be a “hard reject”? Thanks in advance.

Then I suggeset you get SoundCloud, because not many people want to (or should) click random links…

Well, I used this website before and it seems fine. It simply lets you upload audio files.

…and so does SoundCloud, with the added (enormous) benefit of being able to post an embedded player in the forum. Just trying to help, as I don’t click random links and download files unless I really have to, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. But I do click a SoundCloud player every now and then and provide feedback.

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Hi There,

I gave it a quick listen. All I can say is that you really need to listen to some of the other tunes on here to get an idea of where you need to be from a quality standpoint.

As it stands right now this piece isn’t suitable from any perspective.

Compositionally it’s just not a great fit, it has a very weird rhythm and while there are some ok ideas nothing really flows together.

Production/programming it sounds very robotic and static, definitely does not sound like a human player.

Sound quality wise you are just way off the mark.

Type ‘solo piano’ into the AJ search engine and listen to a few results and then listen to yours critically, you’ll see that they aren’t even close. It’s hard to do sometimes but you have to look at it from an outside perspective.


Hello, thanks for replying.

The rhythm isn’t weird, it’s less orthodox and I understand a lot in this might be less fitting for this platform. It’s written mostly in 5/4, some 6/4 and some 4/4. It’s really not common in tracks in here, many of which are light, unassuming “corporate” music, but I listen to and write mostly progressive rock and metal, so I suppose to me “weird” rhythms make more sense.

Regarding the sound of the “recording” is not human enough. I believe your perspective about this might have been different if it were a more lively performance.

Regarding the examples from this site: I already listened before to some of the solo piano results. Some of the things I listened to were quite nice–and better recorded–but I’d also say that some of the approved things sounded pretty banal and boring to me. I guess it’s stylistic preferences.

Yeah I guess I’m strictly trying to provide feedback that will help you with acceptance here. Also please keep in mind that any feedback offered is just to provide some insight, never to insult!

As for the rhythm, jumping time signatures like that just won’t work here (or for most background music marketplaces in general) because it makes it much more difficult to cut to video. You have to keep in mind that this is music designed for picture, it’s not meant to be the main focus and shouldn’t be, so the more complex and interesting you make it, chances are the less likely it is to get accepted… to a point, you have to try and be creative within a “common framework” if you like… But I would say until you really get your feet wet, 4/4 and to a lesser extent 3/4 or 6/8 are the only time sigs you should be using.

As for not being human enough, I’m more referring to the “machine gun” like sound of the programming. Everything sounds like it’s quantized very hard to the grid. Example when the moving bass comes in around 10 seconds it’s very static and robot like. Need to play with push/pull and velocity especially in a solo piece like this.

When you are referencing tracks to compare against, make sure that you are referencing tracks that have been approved within the past month, no later. This market place gets more competitive by the day and there is a very good chance that a lot of the pieces that were approved last year or even 6 months, probably wouldn’t make the quality control cut now.

Overall recording quality is huge as well, and this piece really doesn’t stack up in that respect unfortunately. Better samples, better programming, nice reverbs and fairly heavy limiting are the name of the game here :slight_smile:

What I found is that you really have to change your style to suit the market place, not the other way around. “Artistic License” doesn’t go very far around here but it doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun trying to fit your style into the AJ format.

Best of luck!