How to Use Non-Diatonic Chords to Great Effect in Your Songs

by Gary Ewer, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website: A non-diationic chord is one which does not normally belong to your key of choice. In the key of A major, the seven naturally-occuring chords are: A, Bm, C#m, D, E, F#m, and G#dim. Of those chords, there are countless ways of modifying them by adding tones (Aadd9, […]

Does a Verse Melody Have to Differ from a Chorus Melody?

by Gary Ewer, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website: I’ve devoted considerable space in my e-book “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting“ to describing the differences between verse melodies and chorus melodies. Nothing in the arts is exact; it’s not a science. If it were, I don’t believe we’d have a lot of interest in it. Songwriting would […]

Help! Which Chords Do I Use?

by Gary Ewer, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” Website: Once you know what key your new song is going to be in, it’s a fairly simple process to figure out the triads (chords) that easily work in that key. You’ll find that the I (key) chord, the IV chord (based on the 4th note) […]

Looking for that Elusive "Killer Chord Progression?"

by Gary Ewer, From “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website: Songwriters often go looking for the elusive “killer chord progression”. It doesn’t really exist. Not because there aren’t great chord progressions out there, but more because chords don’t just work on their own. How good a set of changes is depends on what else is […]

How to Fix a Song That Just Doesn't Work

by Gary Ewer, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website: You can learn as much by looking at bad songs as you can by looking at the good ones. The problem is that it’s difficult to find a lot of bad songs to study.If a song has made it to the radio, it usually means that […]

Bored with I-IV-V-I Progressions? Spice things Up with These Suggestions

Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 e-book bundle, and get back to writing great songs! _______________ by Gary Ewer, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website: If you find yourself using the same boring chords in every song you write, it’s time to expand your chord vocabulary. Here are some suggestions for making things more interesting: […]