Writing Good Song Lyrics

Keeping Song Lyrics From Straying Off the Main Point

Songwriters are very familiar with the chorus hook, but there are other kinds to experiment with, and you will want to discover the power of layering various kinds of hooks in the same song. “Hooks and Riffs: How They Grab Attention, Make Songs Memorable, and Build Your Fan Base“ shows you how it’s done. When […]

Songwriting imagery

Creating a More Effective Song Lyric With Imagery

I like to think of imagery as any lyric that seems to create more pictures in the mind than what you’d normally expect from so few words. A quick example: “The trees glowed as the moon shone brightly” describes a scene in a literal way, but… “The trees, bathed in moonlight…” gives us the same […]

Guitar - piano

Songwriting: Hiding the Good Stuff

When you hear a song that you really like, what is it that you like about it? The answer probably changes from song to song. It might be the way the melody sounds for one song, while for another it might be the lyrics. But those are superficial characteristics. (I don’t use the word superficial […]

Writing song lyrics

Using Imagery to Increase the Emotional Effect of Your Lyrics

Imagery is an important part of writing good lyrics, but it’s hard to teach imagery. There are probably lots of ways to define it, but for me, imagery means that you’ve been able to generate a complex picture with very few words. “Use Your Words! Developing a Lyrics-First Songwriting Process” is FREE with your purchase of […]

Bruce Springsteen

Allowing a Chorus to Grab Attention When the Verse Uses the Same Melody

A few articles back I gave some advice on what to consider when you’re trying to write a good chorus hook (“Creating Effective Song Hooks“). But what do you do when your verse and chorus use the same or very similar melody? How can a chorus hook do its job if the verse is using […]

guitarist - songwriter

Does It Matter Which Process You Use to Start the Writing of Songs?

When a songwriter is asked the question, “How do you start a song?”, they usually mean, “Which element of a song (lyrics, melody, chords, etc.) do you work on as your first step?” That element then becomes the identifier for a particular songwriting process: a “lyrics-first process”, a “melody-first process”, and so on. No matter […]