songwriter improvising melodies and chords

Improving Your Ability to Imagine Melodies

If the songs you write come about as a result of improvising — either by yourself or with other songwriters/players — you probably find that the various components of a song come together in layers. A bit of this, a bit of that, and it all eventually glues together. If you’re writing songs by yourself, […]

Guitar and music paper - Songwriting

Keep Looking: Second Ideas are Often Better Than First Ones

If you’ve had that happy circumstance where, while trying to write a song, you get some amazing ideas that appear all at once, and you manage to write that new song in one siting, within a half hour or so, I think that’s wonderful. It’s also rare. If hooks seem elusive when you’re trying to […]

Songwriting - List

A Songwriter’s List

If you want to be a better lyricist, putting lyrics at the top of your songwriting agenda is a crucial first step. Read “Use Your Words! Developing a Lyrics-First Songwriting Process.” Right now, it’s free with your purchase of “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting 10-eBook Bundle” Let’s say you’re in the market to buy a […]

Changing Key (While Not Really Changing Key)

Most songs will keep the same key from beginning to end. For songs that do change key, the most common circumstance is when you have a minor verse that moves to a major chorus. You hear this in lots of songs. I did a video a while back regarding how songs change key, and referred […]

songwriting collaboration

When Are Songwriting Collaborations a Good Idea?

The FREE DEAL continues… Get “Use Your Words!” free with your purchase of “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting 10-eBook Bundle”, and learn how to develop a lyrics-first songwriting process. First, the easy answer: a songwriting collaboration is never a good idea if it means making compromises that you aren’t happy to make. So if you’re […]

Piano - songwriting

Writing Song Melodies, and What You Can Learn From “Heart and Soul”

“Heart and Soul“, that popular song that so many people like to plunk out mindlessly on piano, is a lot older than many realize. It was written in 1938 — 80 years ago! — by American songwriters Hoagy Carmichael and Frank Loesser. If you look up “infectious” in a music dictionary, don’t be too surprised […]