Tom Cochrane

Songwriting: Pairing Up Instinct With Knowledge

As a songwriter, you’re always trying to get the notes of your melodies, as well as the chords that accompany them, to sound somehow magical. At least, that’s the way most audiences will perceive what you’ve done. But hopefully you know that it’s not magic. It’s not even random, even though you may use improvisation and […]

Guitarist - Songwriter

Songwriting and Healthy Self-Criticism

One piece of advice songwriters hear over and over (and I think it’s usually good advice) is to “silence your inner critic.” The belief is that songwriting can grind to a halt when you spend all your time finding fault with what you’re writing, before it’s even finished. Being critical, though, need not always be […]

Imagine Dragons

The Main Differences Between Verse and Chorus Chord Progressions

Learn all the important secrets of writing a song using the chords-first process. “Writing a Song From a Chord Progression” shows you the best way forward. Some songs will use the same chord progression for the verse and the chorus: “With Or Without You” (U2), or “Believer” (Imagine Dragons), for example. Songs that use the […]

Recording Studio - Producer

8 Tips For When All You’ve Got Is One Good Song Idea

How often does this happen to you: You sit down with your guitar, and within moments you’ve got something nice. A great little hook, a riff, or some other kind of musical idea. You play it over and over and it sounds great. And then you draw a blank. And it doesn’t seem to matter […]

Songwriter-Guitarist

7 Ways Chord Progressions Affect the Mood of Your Music

If you’re like many songwriters, coming up with a solid progression that supports the mood of your song is an important first step in the songwriting process. The process usually looks bit like this: Improvise (either on guitar or keyboard) some chords that work well together. Find a catchy rhythm that makes those chords sound […]

Songwriter working at a keyboard

Writer’s Block: Getting All the Parts of Your Creative Brain Moving Together Again

Get the manuals that thousands of songwriters are using to polish their technique: “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting 10-eBook Bundle.” And download a FREE copy of “Use Your Words! Developing a Lyrics-First Songwriting Process.” There are days when coming up with good songwriting ideas just seems impossible. You shouldn’t let that overly discourage you, though. […]