Neil Young

Your Songs – Your Personality

When you listen to the songs you’ve written, can you hear your personality coming through? I’m not talking about the performance of your song; in good musical performances we usually find it easy to hear and feel the personality of the performer. “Use Your Words! Developing a Lyrics-First Songwriting Process” is FREE with your purchase […]

Rolling Stones

A Rare Tonic Note Creates Forward Motion in Your Songs

The tonic note is the one that represents the key of your song, and it has the main quality of feeling like “home”. When a tonic note happens, it sounds as if a musical phrase has, even just temporarily, ended, and the next one can begin. That’s a good reason why the tonic note happens […]

songwriting and architecture

The Architecture of Songwriting, and Changing Your Mind

Building a structure means having a plan before you start. If you’re not an architect, you’ll likely hire one, someone who knows how to create something beautiful while also being mindful of the laws of physics; you want to be sure it doesn’t fall down. Songs have a structure as well. And while I think […]

songwriter

However Long It Takes

How long does it take you to write a song? There’s  common opinion amongst songwriters that the quicker it happens, the better it is. Lots of people will brag about how quickly a song came together for them, but there are few who brag about a song that’s taken months or years. In the fairly […]

songwriter

Your Purpose

Why do you write songs? How do you measure your success? Those are important questions because they help define your purpose as a songwriter. Most of the good music we hear in our lives has been written, performed, produced and recorded by professionals. For most of those professionals, they have a very specific definition of […]

Adele

Delaying the Chorus by Using a Pre-Chorus

The conventional wisdom is that a song’s chorus should be happening by the time you get to the 1-minute mark, or even sooner. A chorus that happens after the 1-minute mark can work just fine, though, particularly if the song is in a slow ballad style. Deciding when it feels right for the chorus to […]