When you write lyrics, do you hope that they speak loudly enough to someone else that they sit up and listen — that they can get something positive from your song’s message?
There is an interview online with singer-songwriter Jason Mraz, and he was asked this:
TT: You seem like a very positive person. What keeps you inspired and energized?
JM: Luckily, I drink my own medicine. Because I perform so often I’m constantly singing those lyrics and mantras. The music becomes my own philosophy and my own energy-boost.
Even when my day is going terribly wrong or I’m running behind or I start to get in my head about things, I take it to the stage and I play my songs and I’m re-awakened.
That’s a really great reminder that sometimes the best lyrics aren’t just the ones that tell a great story to someone else, or even the ones that are meant to inspire others. They might actually be lyrics based on inspirational statements you make to yourself.
As a songwriter, you’ve got this amazing gift of communication. You don’t just say things: you finesse your thoughts, feelings and opinions by creating lyrics, and then you communicate those words to others — and ultimately back to yourself — by creating melodies and chords that enhance their power and effect.
There are days when we all have to drone positive statements to ourselves to keep focused and happy. As a songwriter, you get to sing yours.
When you write a song, don’t just ask, “What will others think of this?” Ask yourself, “Is this speaking to me?”
Because if it isn’t speaking to you, it may be the case that it isn’t speaking to anyone.
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