The Hurtin’ Song: Give it an Emotional Focus

Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 E-book Bundle, and become a top-level songwriter! __________________ There’s nothing like a good hurtin’ song. But there’s nothing worse than a singer who gives us a verse lyric that moans about his miserable existence, moving on to the chorus where we learn that he really feels miserable, in case we […]

Good Songs and Likeable Songs: Is There a Difference?

Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 E-book Bundle, and become a top-level songwriter! __________________ In my opinion, the best songwriters are not overly trying to make their songs likeable. They’re simply trying to make their songs good. And for those top-level songwriters, you the listener can either come along for the ride, or miss out. […]

Writing Song Melodies That Use Pentatonic Scales

Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” E-book Bundle, and become a top-level songwriter! __________________ Most songs are written in a major or minor key, and the scales for those keys use seven notes, not counting any altered tones. A pentatonic scale uses only five notes per octave. There’s a tendency to think of pentatonic scales as […]

Making a Complex Chord Progression Work

Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 E-book Bundle, and become a top-level songwriter! __________________ If you’re the kind of songwriter that likes to experiment with innovation, you’re probably always looking for ways to integrate abstract elements into your songs. You are probably already playing with complex lyrical metaphors, nonstandard formal design, and melodic/harmonic combinations that […]

Song Analysis: “Pumped Up Kicks” (Foster the People)

Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 E-book Bundle, and become a top-level songwriter! __________________ Foster The People’s current hit song, “Pumped Up Kicks” is a good model for a song that uses one set of chord changes that serves as the progression for the entirety of the song. Our instincts usually tell us that using […]

Some Thoughts on Beethoven and The Beatles

Get “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 E-book Bundle, and become a top-level songwriter! __________________ There’s a fascinating parallel between the evolution of “Classical” music and the development of rock music. Studying those two genres can give you really interesting insights into songwriting. It’s a bit difficult to consider the Beatles to be the progenitor of all […]