Love songs

Good Lyrics Create (Rather Than Describe) Emotions

I read an interview with Paul McCartney once where he talked about the choice of words in “She Loves You.” In particular, he and Lennon considered it a bit risky to be singing a song about “he” and “you”, since most love songs put the singer front and centre. In other words, musical logic dictates […]

Guitar, Pencil & Paper

Getting Ideas When a Line of Lyric is Missing

One bad line of lyric can make an entire verse or chorus sound lame. So what do you do when you’ve got a verse that you really like, except that there’s that one line that just seems to be elusive: you just can’t come up with anything. It might be that the line in question […]

Guitarist - songwriter

Starting Songwriting Sessions With a Musical Game

For most songwriters, the way their craft gets practiced is to do more writing. There’s nothing wrong with that, but sometimes doing exercises that target specific songwriting skills is the best way to take what you do to the next level. A number of years ago I came up with five “games” that target specific areas […]

Guitar and paper for songwriting

How Good Lyrics Grab An Audience’s Attention

I had been asked to write a guest blog post for the good people at Songwriting.net (“The World’s Leading International Songwriting Competition”). They proposed several possible topics, and I settled on writing something about lyrics. My post, “How Words Change as a Song Progresses,” can be found on their site right now, and I hope […]

Queen in Studio

In Songwriting, It’s Never Too Late For Easter Eggs

In the software industry, an “easter egg” is a hidden feature that only becomes visible when certain keys are pressed, or when the cursor passes over a certain part of the screen. It’s become an attribute of many programs, and it’s meant to be an entertaining add-on to the program. People like discovering easter eggs […]

Writing great song lyrics

Lyrics and the Natural Pulse

When lyrics sound like they’re not working, you’ll want to check out the up-and-down of the emotional content. Good lyrics start by being observational and narrative in nature, and then move to being responsive and emotional. And that holds true no matter what genre of music you call your own. Beyond that, the next most […]