Muse - Uprising

Unique Song Topics are Hard to Find, So Stop Worrying About That

For any songwriter, uniqueness is a crucial pursuit. Why would you want to write something that sounds like some other song out there, no matter how good it is? In every song you write, you need to hope that there’s something unique about it so that your fans can tell that it’s you they’re listening to, […]

Violin section of an orchestra

Changing Instrumentation May Be All the Innovation Your Song Needs

Chapter 5 of “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” shows how melody and lyric need to work together. Learn how to do it right! Get the entire 10-eBook Bundle along with a free copy of “Use Your Words! Developing a Lyrics-First Songwriting Process.” Most songwriters will, from time to time, worry about their songs all sounding […]

Writing word lists for song lyrics

Creating Word Lists: It Can Give You More Than Lyric Ideas

If you find that writing lyrics takes you a long time, creating word lists can be a big help. By building lists of words, you’re creating a vocabulary that speeds up the process of trying to find the right words: they’re probably all there in front of you, somewhere in your list. Word lists can […]

Neil Young

Borrowing Ideas From Other Writers’ Songs

John Lennon tells the story that Yoko was playing Moonlight Sonata on the piano and he asked her to play the chords backwards. From that reversed performance he composed his song “Because”, from The Beatles’ “Abbey Road” album. I’ve listened to Moonlight Sonata many times, including listening to it backwards (on YouTube you can find […]

The Weeknd

Creating Effective Song Hooks

Most of the time when you talk about the hook of a song, you’re talking about the main, distinctive part of the chorus. There are many different ways to hook a listener, but you could argue that the chorus hook is the most important one, as it gives listeners the most memorable part of the […]

songwriter - guitarist

Committing to Writing Every Day

There is an expression that I keep on the front burner of my creative mind anytime I feel less than excited about writing music: Inspiration doesn’t create music; music creates inspiration. That’s not just a catchy phrase to me; I really believe that. The opposite, by the way, can be the case as well. But more […]