Singer-songwriter

How the Shape of a Melody Affects the Mood of a Song

If you’re ready to take your songwriting to its highest level possible, you need “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting 10-eBook Bundle.” Get the manuals that thousands of songwriters are using. When we talk about a melody’s shape we’re talking about how it moves up and down. That concept of shape becomes more obvious if you […]

Dolly Parton

What Melodic Direction Does to a Song’s Emotional Energy

The average listener may think that a song melody moves up and down in a kind of random way, but for the best songs, there does seem to be value in thinking about a melody’s direction as something purposeful and important. I’ve said in many blog posts (like this one: “How Making a Line Drawing […]

Neil Young - Heart of Gold

Structuring the Melody in a Verse-Only Song: “Heart of Gold”

When it comes to a song’s melody, there’s a standard kind of “formula” that practically all songs in a verse-chorus format use: Verse: Start the melody relatively low in pitch, and move higher as it comes closer to the chorus. Chorus: Keep the chorus relatively high in pitch. If the end of the verse is […]

Singer-songwriter-guitarist

How to Write Song Melodies that Connect With Your Audience

For some songwriters, songwriting seems to be all about writing a great melody. Paul McCartney, Joni Mitchell, Paul Simon, Barry Gibb — these are all songwriters for whom the success of their songs is often easily attributable to the quality of the melodies they write. I mention this, because not all great songs need to […]

Songwriter

Five Steps to Making Words Singable

Do you find it reasonably easy to write words (lyrics, poetry, etc.), but when you try to create songs with those words, everything sounds corny, random, and just plain bad? You read the words, and they sound just fine; you try singing them, and they sound a bit lame. The best songwriters are best because of […]

Keyboardist songwriter

Chords or Melody: Where Should You Put Your Focus?

Some songwriters start their process by working out a good chord progression as a first step. From there, they automatically create a backing rhythm that brings that progression to life. Once they’ve done that, the mood it generates makes them feel comfortable coming up with bits of melody and lyric, and the song starts to […]