Rex Benson – Interview (Part 1)

by Emilio on August 10, 2009

Today I have been lucky enough to interview Mr. Rex Benson from Rex Benson Music Group. Rex kindly answered the questions I sent him about music and songwriting, as well as letting us all know more about his company. He also provided his priceless advice on how to start making inroads into the industry at the end of the interview.

This is Part 1 of the interview (“Corporate Information”).

Part 2 is entitled “Music & You”.

Part 3 is named “Songwriting”.

Enjoy!

Mr. Rex Benson

Mr. Rex Benson

Full Name: Rex Benson

Age: 56

Company: REX BENSON MUSIC GROUP

Position: Owner

PART I

CORPORATE INFORMATION

Rex Benson Music Group

Tell us a little about your company. When was it first established?

I opened my first publishing company, JESSE ERIN MUSIC-BMI (named after my kids) in 1983 as part of a co-publishing agreement with FAMOUS MUSIC CORP. I was also a songwriter then…I have since also opened REX TO RICHES MUSIC-BMI, REX BENSON MUSIC-BMI, CHECKS TO REX MUSIC-ASCAP, and REX ROCKS-SESAC…

What was its breakthrough?

Our first recording was with Mel Tillis on MCA Records…Produced by Harold Shedd who also produced SuperGroup ALABAMA at the time…

And the biggest achievement it has had so far?

A couple of particular milestones come to mind…The 1993 recording of our copyright ‘UNTO YOU THIS NIGHT’ by Capitol Records Superstar Garth Brooks…Garth was the biggest artist on the planet at the time…

The 1999 Single Release of ‘BUY ME A ROSE’ by Kenny Rogers which stunned the country music industry by Hitting the #1 slot 14 years after his previous chart topper… and then same song recorded by Clive Davis on Luther Vandross…Included on his Grammy Winning ‘DANCE WITH MY FATHER’ set…released as a Hit Pop single as well…

What are some of its past and current key artists?

Publishing companies sign writer and sometimes those writers are also writer/artists… Major Publishing houses often sign publishing deals with young artists, but my companies simply work with writers…

Where do you see your company going in the future?

That will depend upon the state of the industry…given the U.S. economy currently, it’s frankly tougher than I’ve seen it in years to place songs and yet we continue to keep faith that great works will find a home…and of course our job is to find great work…

As to particular goals, we have several…but one thing that comes to mind is our interest in finding both a UK/European act to record and release ‘BUY ME A ROSE’ (ala what all-4-one did when they covered the John Michael Montgomery hit ‘I SWEAR’)… PLUS…

We have also completed a Spanish translation and demo of this same piece titled ‘DAME UNA ROSA’ and would be thrilled to find a worldclass romantic male Latin vocalist in the style of Luis Miguel, Julio Iglesias etc. to record it…Much of the world has not yet heard ‘BUY ME A ROSE’ and we would hope to rectify that…

(Continue to Part 2)

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Rex Benson – Interview (Part 3) | MusicKO
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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Louis Brown April 6, 2010 at 1:18 am

Terrific resume Mr. Benson.
Glad you thought those first two songs of mine were close.
I sent 2 more of my best ballads and I wonder what you thought of them.

1. Your Memory Gets All Over Me
2. Goodbye is Written Softly [In Your Eyes]

{This is a strange mode of submitting a song}

Louis Brown

Reply

Louis Brown April 6, 2010 at 1:20 am

I’m staggered at the great success you’ve had, Mr. Benson.
You’ve worked with so many musical legends.
I was honored that you sent me an email yesterday.
I wish you continued great success.

Louis Brown

Reply

John Bowden June 21, 2010 at 1:51 am

Hello Mr Benson:

Are you any relation to George Benson? (Just kidding.)

I am a songwriter seeking to get my songs out there. I look to the interent for possible connections. This is how I came across your website here. I am 59 years old and have been writing songs for over 40 years. I have some tunes signed with DSM Producers. In fact they have had many of my tunes for over 26 years. So far, they have not been able to place any tunes but I still have faith in them. I have a lot more songs I would like to get into the hands of a publisher/producer who would also like the opportunity to try and place some. The website I listed above has about 100 of my tunes not signed with a publisher. I would greatly appreciate it if you could give a listen to some of those tunes there. They are all under the name “Valencia Magic”.

I’m thanking you in advance Mr Benson for your considerations.

John Bowden

Reply

glenn erickson July 23, 2010 at 3:02 pm

Rex, I’m a songwriter and live in Mission Viejo, CA; but am currently in Maui where my wife and I care for her 95 year old mom. Some day, when back in CA, i would enjoy meeting with you.

Meanwhile, with your permission, I would like to send you three of my strongest songs, which I refer to as “easy listening country”. Thanks for your consideration of this request.

Glenn

Reply

Rex Benson June 22, 2012 at 3:09 pm

Glenn…Feel free to send me a song via mp3 and pls include lyric…Thx Much…

Rex Benson
REX BENSON MUSIC GROUP

Reply

Rex Benson June 22, 2012 at 3:10 pm

btw…I’ve heard a number of your songs via Broadjam

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Lisa Madison January 14, 2011 at 2:26 am

Hi Rex. We have 2 songs on the CD that might interest you. Breathe and Kiss the Sun. You can find them on the website “lisamadison.com”, iTunes or Napster. I hope you give them a listen. Thank you for your time. Take care, Lisa Madison

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george allen hicks February 6, 2011 at 6:34 am

hello my name is george allen hicks a songwriter from north carolina i write traditional country becouse it’s music we realy need to keep living but any i am looking to pitch my songs to nashville artist and would love to become family and staffwriter for a nashville publishing company if there is any help you can give please do thanks http://www.myspace.com/georgehicks1

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Carol April 9, 2011 at 12:56 am

Dear Mr. Benson,
I have been writing a play for my church for this coming Christmas, and I would love to use the song you co-authored, ‘Unto You This Night’. The first time I heard it, it brought me to tears, and it never fails to do so. I’d like to share that with the audience, but I don’t know how to go about getting permission, and if it involves buying copyright laws or rights, I won’t be able to do it.

The church ministry does video record the performances of the plays, but I’d like to know if we have your permission to do so. Otherwise I’ll have to write my own song, and I have no doubt it will not be anywhere near as good as yours. I’m not sucking up, just stating facts.

Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you.

Reply

Rex Benson June 22, 2012 at 9:40 pm

Hi Carol:

Thx for your kind words re: ‘Unto You This Night’ which was originally recorded by Garth Brooks…

As to your question…any works can be performed free of charge in the U.S. at any LIVE venue…but if the works are to be sold, then a mechanical license will need to be received…and if works are to played on public airwaves, either via Radio or TV, then the appropriate performing rights organization (in this case BMI) needs to be notified…as do the publishers…The 2 publishers for ‘UNTO YOU THIS NIGHT’ are REX BENSON MUSIC (administered for the world by PEN MUSIC GROUP INC.) and Universal Music…

Thx again for your interest…RB

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Gerry Jara March 30, 2012 at 4:53 pm

‘DAME UNA ROSA’ Hi Rex , Please get in touch, we have the next Julio Iglesias for your song , guaranteed. It’s never too late to see what he has to offer, we rate him highly as he had a no 1 hit in 2002 before he change to the romantic style. and is incredible without copying Iglesias , same emotion, beautiful tones etc

This business is tough and he is about to pack it all in, and we don’t have the clout to make him the next Iglesias Crooner.

We have amazing sample of his voice, and you have nothing to lose and have the means to save this guy’s talent from disappearing, perhaps with your song, I guarantee you will not find anyone better ( have been in this business 50 years and he ” is ” the talent you seek )

Gerry

Synful Music Publishers

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Rex Benson June 22, 2012 at 9:41 pm

Gerry:

Thx for your interest…Pls email me at checks2rex@aol.com and I”ll get you a copy of the Luther master of ‘BUY ME A ROSE’ and also the Spanish demo version titled ‘DAME UNA ROSA’…

Best…RB

Reply

Rex Benson June 22, 2012 at 11:03 pm

I was wondering if you could forward me an email address for Gerry Jara who had left a reply to the interview we did a few years back…Pls. advise…Many Thx…

Rex Benson
REX BENSON MUSIC GROUP
checks2rex@aol.com

Reply

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