Guitar

Making Use of Musical Momentum

If you’re familiar with Maurice Ravel’s “Bolero”, you will know that it is comprised of a 32-bar long melody in two 16-bar parts which repeats, over and over again, with the only change being the orchestration of the melody. There is no other musical development. No change of key, no change of tempo, no competing […]

Songwriter - editing music

Making Improvements On Your New Song Hook

When you get an idea for a song, you’re actually getting several ideas all at once. That’s how creativity works. You might think that you’ve just conjured up a single entity called a hook, but in fact you’ve brought together at least 3 different things very quickly: A catchy little melodic bit; A chord progression […]

Why Writing From a Title Works So Well

In considering the many ways that songwriters start the songwriting process, working from a title is, in my opinion, one of the best. The reason comes down to one word: focus. To tell you more about what I mean, consider one of the other common ways to get the process started: working from a chord progression. […]

John Legend

Using Opposite Approaches For Your Verse and Chorus

As listeners of music, we like to hear contrasting ideas as a song progresses, even if we’re not consciously aware of it. In songwriting, a contrasting idea might mean something like this: one part of a melody that’s harmonized mainly with minor chords, followed by a section harmonized with mostly major ones. Contrast in a […]

Beach Boys - Vocals

Creating Good Backing Vocals For Your Song Recordings

Backing vocals, when they’re done well, can give your song a professional sheen. When they’re done poorly — out of tune, or not well written — no one wants to hear that. It’s not really possible to solve the problem of writing or performing good backing vocals (BVs) in one blog post, so I’ll do […]

Recording Studio

If No One Is Humming Your Melodies, Here Are 3 Reasons

The world is a big place. I only mention that because that’s one possible reason why no one is humming your melodies. You need to be realistic in your expectations. If you aren’t actively trying to build an international audience base, most people actually won’t be humming your tunes. But that’s not what I’m talking about […]