Songwriter - Pianist

When Your Song’s Hook Isn’t Doing Its Job

A hook has several defining attributes that all partner together to make it memorable and catchy: It’s main identifying characteristic is its shortness, making it easy to remember. It has a melodic component that frequently includes some sort of leap, usually upward (“Born in the U.S.A.”). It has a rhythmic component that frequently includes a […]

Guitar and paper for songwriting

Got Great Lyric Ideas, But No Story?

Let’s say you find yourself in a situation where some catchy lines of lyric, or some great word combinations, have been rolling about your mind, but you don’t have a story or song topic that helps knit those lines or words together. “Use Your Words! Developing a Lyrics-First Songwriting Process” shows you several ways to […]

Properly Preparing the Chorus Hook

Here’s something interesting that you may not have noticed about the songs you love: the part you love may only be a few beats long. The rest of the song has the main duty of building up and leading to that great moment. Those first few beats are so enticing, so interesting, and so exciting, we […]

Microphone

Creating a Lyrical Hook

In songwriting, a hook is a short, catchy element within a song that gets repeated often, particularly in the chorus. There are many kinds of hooks, however, and if you’d like to read about those, try this article: “Exploring a Deeper Definition of a Song Hook.” One hook type that that article doesn’t directly address […]

Focusing Lyrics With a Good Payoff Line

The purpose of a payoff line is to provide a point of focus for your lyric, and, by extension, a purpose for your song. It’s a kind of hook that is delivered by the lyric. When a listener hears a good payoff line, their subconscious reaction is, so that’s what the song’s really about. (Example: […]

Band rehearsal

Why Songs Usually Need a Powerful Moment

A hook – that short, catchy, memorable moment – is an important feature of many hit songs. Hooks don’t just show up in pop music; classical music also makes use of hooks. But classical composers are far less likely to discuss it or consider it a make-or-break element within their music. That’s because classical works are often […]