It can be deceptively tricky coming up with song title ideas. You might be struggling to find that perfect name. That cherry on top of the awesome song you just wrote.
Here are a few pointers that will guide you through this slightly sticky situation…
The most common way songs are named, is by the artist picking a specific word or phrase from the chorus.
One that encapsulates what the song is all about. Using a word or phrase from the chorus to come up with song title ideas is extremely common in the pop music world.
It makes the song more memorable.
It would be a shame to write an amazing song but when people go to put it on they can’t remember the title.
They then scramble through lyrics in their head hoping to attain some sort of direction as to what the name is. But no luck.
This is exactly why pop musicians just stick with simple titles that are included within their lyrics. People remember them and in turn, the song stays in mind.
Having said that coming up with song title ideas doesn’t mean you have to strictly follow this formula.
Sometimes investing a little more thought into your name can go along way.
Here are a couple of more creative ways to come up with song title ideas.
This is a slight step back compared to picking from the chorus lyrics.
You can place importance on a lyric that is sung even once throughout the song. The lyric might not have worked in the chorus but works perfectly as a song title.
This is generally the next best thing when it comes to picking a title. For example
Snow Patrols “Chasing Cars” includes the lyric “Chasing Cars” once throughout the song.
They wanted to place heavy importance on this line.
If the chorus of your song contains the theme that something or someone is beautiful. Consider using a synonym for “beautiful” in the title. This can be a nice way of keeping a certain sense of familiarity between the title and lyrics.
You can create a catchy phrase or word that sums up what your song is about. Even if it's not included at all within the lyrics.
The Lumineers’ “Stubborn Love”.
They don’t use the phrase, stubborn love, at all throughout the track.
But the song is clearly about the idea of a stubborn love. So it suits well.
It's almost like a tiny synopsis of the song.
These titles can be very effective when you have a firm grasp of what the theme of your song is about.
Sometimes it's nice to engage your listener right off the bat.
Having something that you essentially “already recognise” as the title pop up within the first line can grab the listeners attention quickly.
This works especially well if used in the first line of the second verse as well.
Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car”
Be careful of this idea. As we said before, if its to abstract and has nothing to do with the song, it can be a disservice to a really great track.
If it's not catchy and memorable in its own right then people are bound to forget it. But it has been done before,
Alt-J's “Dead Crush” is an abstract title. Its a gripping title, creating imagery before you have even heard anything.
This can be a great way to personalize a song if you are comfortable with it. If you have written a song describing someone it can be great to name the song after them.
The listener can now fit a description to a name.
Make sure you are ready to reveal your true feelings to this person though. They are bound to know it's about them!
Remember the 5 senses. Touch, Sight, Smell, hearing, and taste.
Use these to come up with a title that describes something you see as inspiration.
Come up with words that hold value to you. If there are particular things you stand for, write them down and work a title off of that.
Describe a feeling in 5 words or less. A song title is best when short. Try and describe what you are feeling in a short catchy phrase. Preferably with some poetic value to it.
Rhyming within your song title works nicely as well. Such as Wigwam’s “Freddie are you ready?”
Use alliteration if it works well. E.g Cat Stevens “Wild World”
Feel free to use them, see what images the names stir when you read them, guessing what they possibly could be about.
-One last moment
-Words so sharp
-For the love of us
-Whispers of devotion
-Beg for beginnings
-Take all I am
-No one compares
-Gone with time
Those titles may have given you some ideas and themes before you have even written your song.
Sometimes writing down song title ideas before you have begun is a good way to get the creative juices flowing and stir imagery for lyrical inspiration.