songwriter - guitarist

Committing to Writing Every Day

There is an expression that I keep on the front burner of my creative mind anytime I feel less than excited about writing music: Inspiration doesn’t create music; music creates inspiration. That’s not just a catchy phrase to me; I really believe that. The opposite, by the way, can be the case as well. But more […]

Neil Diamond

Taking a Close Look at a Song’s Pre-Chorus

If you’re looking for a song that has what amounts to being a textbook definition of a pre-chorus, that song would be Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline.” The pre-chorus section (“Hands, touchin’ hands/ Reachin’ out,/touchin’ me, touchin’ you”) moves step-by-step higher while the instrumentation builds, the vocal style becomes edgier, and everything gets louder. Those are […]

Singer-songwriter

Five Ways to Write Better Songs

There are many ways to improve your skills as a songwriter, and the best songwriters use a combination of many. These will include: Discussions with other songwriters. Discussions with other non-songwriting musicians (including players, producers, engineers, etc.) Studying the craft of songwriting (via written texts, videos, one-on-one sessions with instructors, etc.) Keeping a songwriting journal […]

Songwriting - chord choices

Keeping Everything You Write — Even the Bad Stuff

For most songwriters, the act of songwriting is about 10 percent imagination/creation, and then 90 percent working and reworking those ideas until a song is complete. Because of that, don’t be surprised if the first ideas you get for a song seem a bit lame. It can take some time before everything sounds the way […]

Band in rehearsal

Controlling the Energy Level of a Song

Musical energy is a subtle element. Most of the time people will think you’re talking about either loudness or rhythmic activity when you’re talking about energy. And while that’s often true, there’s a lot more to it. If you like starting songs by working out chord progressions, you need this eBook: “Writing a Song From […]