Amanda McBroom

Controlling the Emotional Build of a Verse-Only Song

Some songs make use of a verse-only construction, and Bette Midler’s hit “The Rose” (written by Amanda McBroom) is a good example of this. There are other songs that are mainly verse-only, with a short one-line refrain, like Lennon & McCartney’s “I Want to Hold Your Hand.” Those two song formats, verse-only and verse-refrain, both have […]

Singer - Songwriter - Lyricist

Getting Your Verse to Properly Prepare the Chorus

What are the main differences between a verse and chorus that you should be concerned about as a songwriter? You’re likely aware of all the commonly-known ones: Keep the verse melodic range a bit below the chorus. Allow melody notes of the chorus to elongate, especially on title words. Prevent your verse lyric from getting […]

Guitarist - Songwriter - Lyricist

In Songwriting, Definitions Aren’t the Same as Meanings

If you want to know what a word means, you’ll look it up in a dictionary. So we say that a dictionary gives us the meaning. But not in the music world. Not to split hairs, but if you’re a songwriter, looking a word up in the dictionary gives you the definition, not the meaning. […]

Lorde - Writer in the Dark

Balancing the Unique With the Heartfelt

Every songwriter I know wants to write something unique, and you don’t even need to wonder why. Simply put, uniqueness means it hasn’t been done before, and there’s no better way to set yourself apart from other songwriters than to write something that hasn’t been done quite that way before. While that may be true, […]

Songwriter - lyrics

Organizing Words and Phrases Into a Complete Lyric

Improvisation plays an important role in pop songwriting. And we love that feeling of quickly coming up with musical ideas and having them sound great right from the start. Hopefully you know, however, that most songs, even the ones that seem to spill deliciously out of our musical minds within minutes, require some working and […]

Phoebe Bridgers

What’s the Best Connection to Make Between a Verse and Chorus?

There are many songs that seem to show no particular relationship between the verse and the chorus, except for the fact that they both exist in the same song. Take a hit song like “Somebody That I Used to Know” (Gotye), and you’ll notice that the verse and chorus bear no obvious similarity. For the […]