John Newman - Losing Sleep

Constructing the Bridge Section of Your Song

I’d be in favour of a name other than bridge to describe the optional song section that occurs after the second chorus. Maybe “section 3.” A bridge implies that its main job is to transition from one thing to another newer thing, and to make that a smooth connection. But a song’s bridge most often takes the […]

Starting a Song Bridge on a ii-Chord

A song’s bridge usually follows the second go-through of the chorus. And it’s a good opportunity for you temporarily to explore a new key area. That’s because by the time this part of the song happens, a listener’s musical brain is ready for something new. So a bridge will usually give you: a new melody; a new […]

Singer

How to Know If a Song Needs a Bridge

You could make a case for saying that no song needs a bridge, in the sense that there are other solutions at your disposal. Here’s what I mean by that: One of the most important characteristics of any song is contrast. Audiences need to be able to hear some difference between, say, the verse and the chorus, however […]

Song Form

Does a Song Need More Than Verses and a Chorus?

At a minimum, most songs these days will use a verse-chorus or verse-refrain structure. Songs might be constructed of verses and nothing else, such as Amanda McBroom’s “The Rose”, made most famous by Bette Midler. Many old 12-bar blues songs are basically a verse and nothing else, though many will use a repeating refrain to […]

Band in concert

Getting the Most Out of a Bridge Lyric

If you’ve been writing songs for a while, you’ll know that lyrics change in character as a song progresses. To generalize, you’ll notice the following: VERSE LYRICS: Verse lyrics set the stage, recount details of a story, describe characters, etc. It lays out the narrative, the storyline or general song topic. “Hooks and Riffs: How They […]

Comparing Verses and Bridges in Pop Songwriting

When you take a cursory glance at verses and bridges in most pop songs, you see certain similarities: Verse and bridge melodies often display a more wandering quality than a chorus melody. Chorus melodies tend to be rather “hooky” in quality, repeating a concise idea rather than going on a musical journey. Verses and bridges tend to be more elaborate, […]