Piano and guitar - songwriter

When Pretending Helps You Through a Creative Block

“Hooks and Riffs: How They Grab Attention, Make Songs Memorable, and Build Your Fan Base” shows you how a good hook can make the difference between songwriting success and failure. With great examples from pop music history. Trying to sound like your musical hero is a great way to blast through a bad case of writer’s […]

Songwriting in the studio

Songwriting and the Meaning of Music

When you think of the word meaning as it applies to your songs, are you talking about the picture that gets created from the lyrics? Or perhaps you’re talking about the picture that gets created from the sound of the instruments? For me, I pull more meaning out of the instrumental/vocal performance of a song than […]

Justin Vernon

Creating Power Within Your Songs

I’ve been enjoying reading the transcript of an older interview (June 2011) with Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon on the Pitchfork website. Vernon is a singer/songwriter I have a lot of respect for. He puts a lot of thought into the music he writes, and in particular the lyrics. Get “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” eBooks. They’ll […]

Guitar - Songwriter

The Songwriting Process: Determining the Second Step

Everyone knows how important a good hook is, but that doesn’t guarantee you’ll write a good one. You need to read “Hooks and Riffs: How They Grab Attention, Make Songs Memorable, and Build Your Fan Base.” Everyone’s got their favourite way of starting songs, even if they try to change things up from one song […]

songwriter - guitarist

What To Do If Your Songs Sound Too Syrupy

Do you find that you’d like a bit of edge in your songwriting, but everything you write sounds too sweet and gooey? You’d like to write a song that sounds like a Springsteen rocker, but the more you work on it, the more it sounds like “Muskrat Love.” So what can you do to take […]

Is Motivation Different From Inspiration?

I wonder if someone has ever asked you where you find your motivation for songwriting. And if so, I wonder if you would give a different answer if they asked you to describe where you find your inspiration? Inspiration is a favourite word for people in the creative arts. By inspiration, most artists mean the initial “spark” that causes […]