Songwriting Principle No. 3: Chord Progressions- What Makes a STRONG One?

You might think that when I talk about “strong” progressions I’m really talking about “good” ones, but that’s not what I’m referring to. A strong chord progression has a particular set of characteristics that contrast with the other category: fragile progressions.Good songs use a combination of strong and fragile progressions.  So what is the principle […]

Songwriting Principle No. 2: Energy Propels Your Song Forward

When we speak of the energy of a song, it’s probably obvious what we’re talking about. In short, it’s that unseen force within a songthat causes our body to move with the music. All songs have energy, even the very quiet, serene ones. The successful song does not deal so much with how much energy a […]

Songwriting Principle No. 1: Contrast Makes or Breaks Your Song

When I wrote “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting”, I researched long and hard about what makes good songs; why some songs work so well, while others seem to fall flat. In my preparation for writing the book, I developed a list of what I considered to be the primary principles of successful songs. There are eleven of […]

Chord Progressions for a Minor Key

Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 e-book bundle, and become a top-level songwriter! ___________________ The vast majority of songs out there are written in a major key, so for those of you who avoid minor keys, you’re missing out on an entire palette of colours. Minor key music has a different feel, and a […]

Bad Songs, and How to Write Them

There are many ways to write a bad song, but most of those bad ways will fall into one of the following categories:    1. Ignore the form of the song. The form is what makes the listener feel like they’ve been on a journey. Form, in essence, means that your song will make sense.    2. Make sure your […]

Use Slash Chords to Make Chord Progressions More Interesting

Simply put, inverting a triad (chord) means to put a note other than the root of a chord as your bottomost note. You might know them as “slash chords.” Used well, inversions can give direction to your chord changes, and make them sound like they’ve got a real purpose for being there. Here’s how it works: If you’re following a […]